Mogul vs. Remnants Pt. X: R1's Reawakening
Remnant 1 has decided to make efforts to become stronger, after losing his battle against Remnant 3, The Fury. Doubting his abilities, Arman decides to search for a second sword to aid in further development of his powers and his strength. However, when a new Remnant appears from his journeys, Arman begins to question if his actions are justified, in the eyes of the Argen Church.
- 1 Chapter 104 (Remnant 1)
- 2 Chapter 105 (Remnant 1)
- 3 Chapter 106 (Remnant 1)
- 4 Chapter 107 (Remnant 1)
- 5 Chapter 108 (Remnant 1)
- 6 Chapter 109 (Remnant 9)
- 7 Chapter 110 (Remnant 1)
- 8 Chapter 111 (Remnant 1)
- 9 Chapter 112 (Remnant 9)
- 10 Chapter 113 (Remnant 1)
- 11 Chapter 114 (Remnant 9)
- 12 Chapter 115 (Remnant 9)
- 13 Chapter 116 (Remnant 9)
- 14 Chapter 117 (Remnant 5)
- 15 Chapter 118 (Remnant 1)
- 16 Chapter 119 (Remnant 1)
Chapter 104 (Remnant 1)
"What do you think?"
I put the sword back into its sheath and returned it to the weapon smith.
"It is an incredibly crafted weapon. But..."
The weapon smith regarded me. "It is too light, I suppose."
The weapon smith took a look at her collection. "To be fair, my kind isn't really known for using heavy and large weapons to the scale of Pariah. But I guess you can already figure that out yourself."
I scratched my head awkwardly. "Yes."
The weapon smith laughed. "Dwarven weaponry has always been axes. But I guess you prefer swords. Sorry I couldn't be of any help."
"No! No, I think you are doing amazing things. Thank you again for your hospitality, Merchant Gimedelos."
"Call me Gime!"
"Thank you again for your hospitality, Merchant Gime!" I bowed.
I walked back to the Fortress. I had taken upon myself to help the people of Corinth, by adventuring out myself and completing a few errands for Sophia. Sophia had risen to a high rank due to her efforts in saving and protecting the people of the country, as well as leading to nationwide repairs. For the first time, many of the neglected towns we had visited were given attention. Sophia would go to visit the people along with Lucius to help out whenever they could.
Although the Inquisition was one of many peacekeeping forces in the country of Corinth, it had become of the most prominent ever since Sophia and Lucius embarked out and explored the vast lands. Sophia had become widely recognized as the Elven Maiden of the Inquisition, the heroine to the people.
As for Lucius, I had never seen him so happy.
I took a look at Loz-Q, in my hand. I had slain many monsters and demons with this blade. But without a second blade, I felt incomplete. I cannot deny that my time wielding only Pariah had been a waste. But ever since I had wielded both Pariah and Loz-Q, especially in my battle against Diablos, it made me feel more accustomed. It just felt right.
I put Loz-Q back into its sheath, the strap dangling on the back of my fur coat. My attire had once again changed. A sleeveless open fur coat over a tunic, black pants and sandals. Traditional Corinthian attire. My scarf was still around my neck. I would never forget it, for it brought back good memories of my time with the children of Hephaestus.
I saw a few children playing with a friendly dragon, who blew fire for entertainment. I instinctively felt uncomfortable.
Deacon Chow. The Fury. He had outmatched both Lucius and I. Despite holding back, there was a brief moment that I had let everything loose to stop him. And it wasn't enough. To think that I would be the firstborn and supposedly the strongest of my kind. I felt like I was not living up to my part.
I clutched my head. "Who... who is this."
You know who I am. I took out Loz-Q, and the golden segmented blade hummed with white mist.
"Koios..." I never encountered this before. To have a blade speak to me.
You fear inadequacy.
I looked down, in shame. "Yes."
Did you not forget, your destiny? Your fate? Did you forget how you obtained this blade?
I remembered. My clash against Koios and his two brothers. I was outmatched, but I kept fighting. Pushing past my limits. I remembered struggling through, and soldiering through all the pain that the Titan brothers had inflicted on me.
"Lord Koios, I fear that my brothers may have well surpassed me in power. If I am unable to live up to my name as the Eldest, I may not be adequate in this final battle."
Koios was silent. Why do you think they have surpassed you?
I stopped walking. "Deacon Chow, the Fury. He defeated both Lucius and I. I had the combined efforts of my brother, who is destined to be our leader, and we were outmatched."
You held back, did you not?
"I gave it my all at some point."
Yet, you chose to restrain yourself throughout most of your fight. I was watching. I am always with you so long as you wield that blade. You let peace and kindness influence your strive for power.
I said nothing.
But despite this, gap. You wish to become stronger, do you not?
"I have already given away one of my blades to my brother."
A second blade, you seek.
Koios' presence in Loz-Q intensified, the mist bringing about a radius of frost on the dirt trail.
It is during a time of desperation, does a hero evolve. Perhaps you must find that.
"I do not know how."
In time you will see. For my foresight predicts it. Your chance to redeem yourself, shall be soon.
The mist dissipated, as Loz-Q's hum was gone. I put the blade back into its strap.
"Redemption." I looked into the sky.
Chapter 105 (Remnant 1)
I walked in on Merrow sitting at her table, with the numerous shards of her spear sitting there, glinting in the light.
"Lady Rivenlight?" I asked, knocking on the door.
"Come in, Arman!" Merrow forced a smile on her face as I walked in.
"Your spear..." I muttered.
"Yeah." Merrow said, her face was full of sadness.
"I fought so many battles with this spear. My memories, and my moments." She ran her hand on a huge shard of the hilt. Written on it were two names in two glowing colors. Magenta and Green. I recognized one of them as "Paladin Decen" in Acadi, and the other, in a language I couldn't understand.
"The spear reminded you of him, didn't it." I asked.
Merrow nodded, picking up the broken hilt that had the two words written on it. She showed it to me.
"Skarkops De'ah Cen, Paladin Decen" She said. Then she put her finger on the green name.
"Mera Rivenlight. You already know whose name that stands for."
Merrow smirked. "That is my birth name. I changed it to Merrow. I thought it was weak. Silly, I know."
I frowned. "Mera is a beautiful name."
Merrow smiled. "Aww, thanks Arman."
I knelt in front of the shard and held out my hand. "Can I hold it?"
I took the hilt, and rotated it so that Decen's name was in view. The glow illuminating my face and my hair, as magenta streaks from the light reflected off my bangs.
A tear ran down Merrow's cheek as she looked at me.
"I've probably told you a million times. But you look so much like him."
I wrapped my arms around Merrow and held her.
"Lady Rivenlight, I know I am not Decen. But I will do my best to make sure you are happy. I don't want to see you sad."
"I know. I appreciate that, Arman."
I took a look at the shards of the spear. Merrow's memories. Her moments with Decen. This was what was left of the master she loved. And it was reduced to pieces. Every time Merrow wielded that spear, I could sense from her movements that it was full of peace, and security. Of the feeling of support and reassurance. I knew that with it broken, she would never be the same.
I suddenly had an idea.
"Merrow, I think I know how to fix your spear."
I used my hand to scrape the shards into a pile and gently put them into a red velvet bag.
"It's risky... but the Silver City. We might be able to take this to the Makers."
Merrow's eyes were full of curiosity. "The Makers?"
I nodded. The Makers were Celestial beings who had smithed the greatest weapons. They had smithed Pariah, the Celestial Slayer. Surely they would know how to restore your spear. But...
"There's probably a catch, isn't there." Merrow said.
"Yes. They probably did not take lightly that I had destroyed a majority of their military might. I... I will have to do something in return for them."
Merrow put her hand on my shoulder. "Arman... you shouldn't have to do this for me."
I shook my head. "I want to do this. Let me do this for you."
Merrow looked at me. "Arman Wan. You are one of a kind."
I smiled. "And you are one of the most amazing people I have ever had the pleasure of working with."
Merrow got up. "In that case, then let me come with you."
"It is my spear after all. I'm not going to leave you alone. I was Decen's Guardian, and technically you are part Decen. So I will fight alongside you."
I chuckled. "What about Lucius then?"
"He'll come too."
I got to my feet as well and held out my hand. Merrow shook it.
"It's a deal then, Lady Rivenlight."
Chapter 106 (Remnant 1)
"Hey. Merrow said you were headed to the Silver City?" Lucius said, as he and Sophia approached me.
"Yes." I replied, as I brought out my old Argen suit and attire. I strapped Loz-Q to my back and went out.
Lucius grabbed my arm and I turned around. He gave me a serious expression.
"You're not going alone."
I looked at him, then at Sophia.
"But... you two have so many things to do here."
Sophia walked up to me and smiled. "A lot of the people can handle themselves at the moment. I think it's a good time for us to go together."
I nodded. "Then it is settled."
We met Merrow at the gate.
"You know where we're going, right?" Merrow asked.
"Yes." I replied. I concentrated, to a very specific spot in the outskirts of Argen. "Send us to the Silver City junction."
Merrow touched my wrist and slashed the air with a shard of her spear, generating a portal. We walked in as the surroundings elongated, taking form of a massive glowing silver and gold gated door.
Sophia gasped. "It is beautiful!"
Lucius kept his hand on Pariah. "We don't know how dangerous this place is. But Arman has already struck bad blood with these guys. We gotta be careful."
The door began to creak, as we all prepared our weapons. A sliver of bright light leaked out of the cracks as the door flung open, to an empty city. It looked barren, but the buildings were all white, sparkling, as if they were made of precious limestone.
We stepped through, cautiously. Instantly, the gate shut behind us.
"Welp." Merrow muttered, as she shook her shard. "Can't teleport us outta here. I guess it's a point of no return."
We walked down the city. Sophia clung onto Lucius' arm as I looked around, absorbing the surroundings. It was everything Priest Pollux had described. A beautiful shining city of pure white. Sparkling water. Sparkling buildings. The sky, beautiful and peaceful. I heard laughter in the distance. Such a beautiful place.
I instantly thought of all the corpses of the Silver Legion we had killed. The men I had commanded and fought alongside with, the many dead from our war.
I had done this to these people.
I clenched my fist. Merrow glanced at me and sensed I was uneasy.
"Arman? Are you okay?" She asked.
"Yes." I lied. For the first time. I didn't want her to be more worried than she already was. But I was very clearly not okay.
These poor people. They lost their defenders. Very likely the Winged Warriors of this city had loved ones back here. And to know they were all slain. I looked at my hands.
They were all slain by me.
Be pure. Kind. For a kind heart will always outshine the darkest of evils.
Those were Pollux's words. But what was I even fighting for? Was I even pure anymore? I always believed that as a soldier of Argen, my duty was to aid my brothers and sisters. It had never occurred to me...
I was a priest who killed.
What kind of evils could I possibly outshine? If my hands have been stained with the blood of thousands?
Sophia looked all around. "This city is barren. There was no one guarding these gates."
"Indeed." A voice boomed from all around. We all readied our weapons.
A large flash of light blinded me, as we held our arms up to cover up. The light died down, and an angelic warrior levitated in the air. Beautiful, and elegant. His wings, segmented into six strands of light on each side. His armor, golden, decorated with arcane lines, similar to my Argen armor that lined my left shoulder. His white hood, covering his face, but I could still make out distinct features. A massive scar. A beautiful face, with two glowing silver eyes. He appeared middle aged, but this beauty was offset by his expression. It was pure resentment, and he was glaring at me.
"Arman Wan. Priest Proxima of the Argen Church. Lead Centurion of the Argen Guard. You dare show your face in The Silver City? After you had slain my brothers and sisters?"
Lucius stepped forward. "We need the Makers' help. We don't wanna fight."
The angel glared at Lucius. "You... I sense hatred and darkness rolling off of that arm of yours. Begone. This is your final warning."
Lucius drew Pariah. "We're here to see the Makers. We're not backing down."
Sophia stood by his side. "If it means we must fight you, then so be it."
Merrow looked at the two of them. She probably saw how dedicated we were. She understood the extent we would take to ensure her precious spear was restored. And I felt the same way.
I drew Loz-Q, and planted the blade firmly onto the ground. Kneeling down.
"Great Silver Soldier, I beg of your forgiveness. But we seek the Makers. We must restore the weapon of our friend. Please... give us a chance."
The angel sneered, as he dissipated into silver mist, and rematerialized in front of me. He unsheathed his large broadsword, and planted it in front of mine.
"Arman Wan. You are the reason this city's defenses have been weakened greatly. Have you forgotten... the pain you have caused me?"
I looked up, as I began to realize why he looked so familiar.
"You and your blade. The First Pillar. Dante of the First." The angel's voice was laced in rage, as the surroundings began to shake. His armor glowing bright.
Merrow looked at me. "Arman, it's okay. We can always find another way."
I got to my feet, my hands on the hilt of Loz-Q, facing the towering angel.
"You... are his son. Aren't you?" I asked.
The angel's glare confirmed it. "By your hands. By your rage. The Rage of War, you killed my father. I shall avenge him. Prepare yourself, Remnant 1. To this day, I have dreamt of this moment. And now, I shall embrace it. You shall be fighting Erion, the Keeper of the Gate!"
Merrow ran up to me, but I shot her a glare.
"No." I said, firmly. "I..."
I looked back at Erion. "I must make this right. If Erion wishes for this chance... he shall take it. This isn't just a matter of fixing your spear anymore."
I pulled Loz-Q out, as I readied my blade. The segmented golden sword steaming with white frost, as Erion did the same, brandishing his massive broadsword.
"Erion, I understand your rage. And I shall respect it. We shall fight."
Lucius' eyes widened. "Arman. This is ridiculous. We can fight him together." He stepped forward, but Erion glared at Lucius, and swiped his sword, knocking the Remnant out of the way as he flew into the side of the gate, landing on the ground.
"Luke!" Sophia shouted, and prepared her staff.
Erion swung his sword again, and created a magical barrier that separated Merrow and Sophia away from me.
I took my stance. Erion grinned darkly.
"So, Arman Wan. You understand, the rules of this bout. We shall fight. One on one. Until only one may draw breath."
I closed my eyes, summoning the Blessing of Pollux, as my body glowed silver.
"Come!" I shouted.
Erion yelled a battlecry, as he charged. I opened my eyes, and also leapt forward as we clashed.
Remnant against Angel.
One who sought atonement, against one who sought vengeance.
Chapter 107 (Remnant 1)
Erion's blows were heavy. His swings shook me to the bone, as every slash was met with Loz-Q. Every clash was a tremble. A tremor across the ground. Every time our blades crossed, a shower of sparks and the sound of an explosion rung the empty streets of The Silver City.
"Dante. Ivory. Tayael. Cera. My brethren. Slain by your blade." Erion growled, as he leapt back, swinging and sending hundreds of arcs of celestial energy my way at a superhuman pace. I rushed forward with the Blessing of Pollux, dodging the arcs acrobatically, and slashing Loz-Q and sending arcs of my own.
Erion roared, as he flapped his wings, the massive air pressure neutralizing the frost, and knocking me back.
Erion materialized in front of me in a burst of white mist, but I had already anticipated it from Combat Intuition. I clenched my teeth, as I barrel rolled out of his slash, rolling to the side, and slashing with Loz-Q as hard as I could. But the moment I did that, Erion swung around with overwhelming reflexes and speed, intercepting the blade.
We clashed once more, as I felt my boots crack and crush the pavement.
"FALL, MURDERER!" Erion yelled, as the arcane lines on his armor glowed an even brighter silver. The soldier slashed, and pushed me back as my feet left two large troughs on the ground.
I regained my composure, breathing heavily. "You are formidable."
But Erion did not care. He did not care about honor. He wanted his father avenged.
"RAAAAGH!" He roared, as his wings flapped, hurtling the angel at me with overwhelming speed. Even with Combat Intuition I found myself unable to keep up. Erion's speed, strength, and reflexes were overwhelming. The amount of hatred. Resentment, that he had kept inside of his heart. It must have fueled the young angel to turn into this... Arbiter of Destruction.
My luck finally ran out, by the fifty sixth strike, Erion had managed to get a clean cut into my side. I fell to my knee, as Erion slashed down, but I intercepted the blade.
"Erion... I am truly sorry." I seethed, struggling to match his immense strength, but Erion was not hearing it.
"You will have all eternity to lament your crime... in the afterlife!"
Erion let go, and clenched his fist. My eyes widened.
"No... this is impossible. Combat Intuition should have predicted-"
Erion launched the punch and got me square in the cheek. His eyes full of fury and anger.
"I don't... need to conform to the Silver City's ways. I just want you dead. BASTARD!" He roared, as he pushed so hard I went flying.
I smashed into a building, the limestone blasting into hundreds of fragments.
"Arman!" Merrow and Sophia screamed.
Sophia was trying to dispel the barrier with everything she had. Same with Lucius and Merrow. But I knew they could not do it. Nothing was as strong as a pact. A bind between two warriors. This was our fight. And our fight only.
I got to my feet, my wounds regenerating.
Erion approached me, his wings were no longer white, but glowing orange. Despite his heavenly appearance, he looked demonic. Rage and anger. Desire for revenge. His fist clenched, and his other, grasping his broadsword tightly.
"Your combat intuition..." Erion muttered. Suddenly, he dissipated into white mist, reappearing in front of me.
Combat Intuition predicted he would swing his fist, but suddenly, he swung his blade, cutting into my chest as I growled in pain.
"Is useless against me!" He yelled.
Erion leaned forward, and Combat Intuition predicted he would slash, but he grabbed my throat, and smashed me into the ground, then threw me into the air as I felt myself hurtling several hundred feet back onto the ground, cracking it.
I coughed out blood as I felt my bones break.
"Do you want to know why...." He growled, as he began to pressure me once more. I couldn't understand why CI was not working.
"DO YOU WANT TO KNOW WHY?!" Erion screamed, as more and more of his slashes got through CI and my defenses. I was getting more and more bloody. Even with Regeneration, my body had limits. The amount of pain I could take before I would go unconscious.
Erion slammed his sword into me as I slid back.
I got up, my bones mending, but I was in too much pain. I was getting lightheaded from the blood loss.
Erion slammed his sword onto the ground. "Because I am no longer a Winged Warrior." He seethed.
My eyes widened. "What do you mean?"
Erion glared at me. "I had to abandon... who I was. To become this strong. I had to abandon what I am. I am no longer a Silver Legion Soldier. I fight with two styles now. This new style... a transplant. A necessary evil." Erion held out his hand, and black electricity emanated from it.
"No... Erion how could you?!" I screamed.
Erion's eyes pooled with tears. "He said he could give me power... I needed the power. To kill YOU." He roared.
I had no choice. Erion had become infected with the Corruption. He did it to avenge me. It was all my fault.
"Erion... my actions cannot possibly be excused, and I see that. But to serve Mogul... I must free you from this. Whether you like it or not. I must continue living. I'm sorry." I said, as I brought Loz-Q up to my left forearm, and cut the tattoo that held the Mark of Ares.
My body surged with both the Blessing of Pollux, and the Mark of Ares, as I roared, powering up.
Erion grimaced. "The Fires of War. It is great indeed. But this time is different. For my father, Dante. I shall avenge him! Come, Devil of Argen!"
I stomped on the ground, cracking it. My sword arm steaming with so much frost that an armor over-mold of pure ice formed over my shoulder, resembling one of Erion's wings. My other arm, trailing with the Fires of War. My eyes glowed a bright white, as I could feel every action exponentially amplified. I clenched my teeth.
We clashed again, and this time, I was able to barely keep up with Erion's dual fighting style. CI was confused by his two techniques, but this was offset by the tremendous amount of power surging from my body. But I knew I couldn't beat him. I can't beat him.
I was at my max with my two boosts, and Erion's rage continued to climb. We clashed and the shockwaves of our attacks shook the entire city.
Erion finally managed to get another hit in, a stab right into my ribcage as I roared in agony.
"Yes....YES. SQUIRM, MURDERER." Erion screamed.
I grabbed the blade, my hands cut and bloodied. I glared at him, blood leaking from my head and the corner of my mouth. "Erion... I shall NOT FALL TODAY." I roared as I leaned forward, and head butted the angel as hard as I could. Erion slid back.
"I will avenge him. I will avenge him." Erion said, in a trance. He repositioned myself, and shot forward in a jet of steam. His speed now so overwhelmingly fast, that even with my superhuman reflexes, and my two boosts, I could not react in time. I could only watch the angel closed in on me, his broadsword aimed right at my throat.
"I WILL AVENGE HIM!!!!" Erion screamed.
Suddenly, the sky became dark, and Erion stopped moving.
"What.... no. You cannot interfere with my bout!"
I stumbled back. "Who... what?"
The magical barrier began to crack, as Lucius, Merrow, and Sophia ran up to me.
"Arman! You god damn idiot!" Lucius yelled, crushing me in a hug.
I looked in the sky, and another being had interfered with our fight. I looked back at Erion, and realized he had stopped, because a massive chain, glowing white, had held him down. Whoever this man was, his power was ridiculous. He had not only processed Erion's speed, but was precise and powerful enough to pin him down with the chain, and stop his immense momentum.
Not only was this man's reflexes out of our league, but his precision, his power...
The man descended from the skies. He wore red and orange flannel, and a white T-shirt. His hair, ashy grey, but curly. The chain wrapped around his arms and gave off a silvery glow. For some reason... I felt like I should have known who he was.
And everything in my body told me to stay away and to not fight.
"No... it can't be..." Merrow said. I turned to her, and her face was full of shock.
"Lady... Rivenlight?" I asked.
Merrow stepped forward.
"How are you alive..." She said, her eyes pooled with tears.
The man turned to her, with a smile on his face.
"It is nice to meet you again, Merrow Rivenlight." He said.
I walked up to Merrow. "Lady Rivenlight, how do you know this person?"
Merrow turned to me, her face was still pale.
"Arman... this... this is..."
The man shook his head and laughed. He walked up to me.
"Oh my. You certainly do resemble him. Perhaps not so much the hair... or the clothes. But the face. So he truly has done it. I always knew he could."
I stared at the man. My whole body was paralyzed in fear for some reason. As if it instinctively knew this man was too strong for me to handle. I turned around and realized Lucius was feeling the same way.
"Who.... who the hell are you?" He muttered.
The man smiled. "My dear Remnants." He said.
The man wrapped the chain away, as Erion fell on his face, unconscious. This man had defeated Erion in one single movement of his chain. I had struggled to even land a single blow.
I stared at him as the chain returned to his wrists, decorating them neatly. He looked at me, with a warm expression.
"My name is Icarus. The Paladin of Light."
Chapter 108 (Remnant 1)
"I see so much of Decen in you two." Icarus said, as he led us around the city.
Merrow pursed her lips, and Icarus noticed.
"My dear, I understand you must have many questions."
Merrow looked at him. "I don't understand how you're alive. Decen... he..."
Icarus narrowed his eyes. "The past is the past, Guardian. His passing, and his legacy. That is now yours to hold. Along with the Remnants"
Merrow wiped her eyes. "I'm sorry. I... I'm so sorry."
I glanced at the streets. There were not a lot of people, but the people who did live in this village were all staring at our group. They definitely heard my battle with Erion. But they were not affected. It was likely because of Icarus... they surely must have known about Icarus' power.
Icarus stopped and put his hands on Merrow's shoulders. "My dear Guardian. There is nothing to be sorry for."
Merrow sobbed. "I... I just can't believe you're here. It took everything I had to move on. You've... To see you again..."
Icarus smiled. "You have grown, into such a beautiful and strong woman."
Merrow managed a slight laugh. "Icarus..."
"You were always beautiful. Decen saw that too. But he never said it out loud. In his pride and ego, he would never have admitted it."
Merrow shook her head. "But... I just don't understand. How are you still alive Icarus? I saw you die!"
Icarus beckoned us forward into a temple. "Perhaps what I will show you will give you some explanation. Because you are right, Guardian. I did die. But now I live."
We entered the temple and walked down the grand hall. Numerous statues decorated the walls... statues...
I clutched my head. So did Lucius.
"Luke? What's wrong?" Sophia asked.
Icarus turned around. "I see. This place triggered a memory. You will realize that this place bares striking similarity to an Acadian building. The Temple of the Five Elders."
We continued walking, and Icarus walked next to me.
I felt uncomfortable. This was the Paladin of Light. I remembered what Merrow had told me. Decen was one of the best of the best, but he was not number one. At the time he was still working with the Acadians, there were a few Paladins who surpassed him in power. Namely, Azazel, the Paladin of Battle, and Icarus. If Icarus was even stronger than Decen... who far eclipsed me in power...
"Remnant 1... was it?"
"Yes." I replied.
"You are quite well mannered, unlike your progenitor."
"It was due to my background, as a prie-" I suddenly stopped myself. I was no priest. I... I...
Icarus regarded me. "You wield the sword. I suppose you don't have Decen's transformation powers?"
"No. That power has been inherited by Lucius."
"I see. But from your movements. Your discord. Your facial expressions, I sense that you wish for more power?"
"How did you know?" I asked, surprised.
Icarus laughed. "Because your father always had the same expression. He wanted to be the best. As the firstborn, I suppose you have put yourself in an expectation to also be the greatest of your brethren?"
"I... yes. I do." I admitted.
Icarus adjusted his shirt. "I sense potential in you. Perhaps after our council with Kanade I can offer you my services."
Icarus smiled. "Unlike Decen, you strive for power in a healthy way. That deserves praise on its own. To become strong without losing yourself in the darkness. I shall train you in the way of the light."
Icarus suddenly stopped at the door. He opened it and kneeling in the center of the room, was a young boy, in prayer. His hair was long, reaching his shoulders like Lucius, but his face was pure. Kind and innocent. He had his hands firmly clasped, and his eyes were closed.
He opened them and stood up. He wore white robes, and was barefooted. "Ah. There you are, Icarus."
Icarus walked up to him. "How are you, Kanade?"
Kanade smiled. "Ever so grateful, as usual. To our merciful Lord and savior." He turned to me, and I recognized him. His face was similar to mine.
He held out his hand. "Greetings, brother. I am Kanade Asaoka. Decen's Sixth Remnant."
Chapter 109 (Remnant 9)
I stepped forward by impulse. "You... You've been here this entire time?" I asked.
Kanade looked at me. "You are the ninth."
I hesitated. "How.... did you know that?"
Kanade tilted his head. "A feeling." He walked up to me and touched my corrupted arm.
"Anger... hatred..." He muttered. His body began to glow, and I could feel my body being soothed.
"What are you doing?" I asked.
Kanade shook his head. "I cannot purify this. It is not my job to. But I see you have managed to find love another way." He looked at Sophia. Sophia blushed.
"What do you mean purify? What are your powers?"
Kanade laughed and turned around putting his hands to the sky.
"My powers. I don't know if I'm supposed to say I do. I have been blessed by a loving Father." He closed his eyes, as his body glowed white, a brilliant and pure white, unlike Arman's Blessing of Pollux, or even Icarus' chains.
"I don't have any powers." Kanade said.
"Uh... but you mentioned purifying." I replied, but Kanade shook his head.
"No. This isn't the work of my own. The Lord has provided everyone with whatever tools they need to live their life. Everything has a purpose. Yours. Mine. I have yet to discover my purpose."
I took a deep breath. "Kanade, you're a Remnant. If you know that, surely you know your purpose is to join us to battle Mogul."
Kanade put his hands behind his back, and turned to me. "I refuse to fight."
I narrowed my eyes. "What?"
Kanade ran his hand across a pillar. "Why must I fight? To hurt another?"
"Uhhh you know Mogul is evil right?"
"And he definitely is. But we have no right to end another person's life. How a person is judged, that is up to the Lord to decide."
"Ummm I'm pretty sure the guy upstairs would want you to help us. I mean that's kind of what we were made for."
Kanade sighed. "You have lived a life full of battle. Full of bloodshed. I am in no position to judge you. But I would ask you refrain from referencing the Father in this manner."
I stepped forward. "Kanade, it's your purpose. You need to come with us. We need all the Remnants to fight and avenge Decen. Your biological father."
Kanade raised an eyebrow. "Avenge? Fight?"
My anger began to flare up. "Okay, you little shit. Listen here, you're coming with me, whether you like it or not. You don't have a choice. If you don't join us, Mogul will kill you. He will kill everybody here. He's ruthless." Sophia put her hand on my arm. I calmed down a little.
Kanade regarded me. "If I die, I will die. But I will not do so knowing I gave into sin. You must understand, that death is but a stepping stone."
"Stepping stone? Look. I don't know what you're talking about. All I know is our life was meant for this. It's brutal and grim. That's just how it is. That's how my life is..."
Kanade walked forward and touched my forehead, suddenly I felt all my memories come alive. Arman smiling at me and training. The first time I met Sophia. Our first kiss.
"It might not look like it, but as much darkness you have lived in your life, you have also experienced kindness, happiness. The Lord loves all his creations. And death is but another step, for all he forgives shall see him once more. I fear death, but I also know I can return to our Father. As long as I remember all the good in my life."
I sighed. "I... I can't see this the way you do. I've been told that I will walk down a blood filled road. There is no happiness in my final moments. We're destined to do this. That much I know." For some reason, talking to Kanade, I felt like letting everything out.
Kanade smiled. "Perhaps you are right. Perhaps it is my destiny to follow you to your battle. But in no way will I kill. Or fight. I am not a fighter."
Love. It was such a foreign term to me in the past. But I had thought I understood it when I met Sophia. But standing here in front of Kanade, I began to doubt it.
"So much pain... and violence you have lived." Kanade whispered. "Do you truly think yourself irredeemable?"
"I... I'm supposed to lead you all. That is my destiny... To lead you all to your death." I said, dejectedly.
Sophia gasped. I turned around in shock, realizing what I had just done.
"Luke... but you said..."
"You... you said you weren't going to leave me!" She sobbed.
"Sophie, look I didn't-"
Sophia backed away, tears streaming down her face. "You PROMISED." She screamed at me, and I stopped in my tracks. My heart felt like it stopped beating.
"Don't... don't talk to me." She said, as she turned around and stormed out of the building, in tears.
Chapter 110 (Remnant 1)
Icarus held out his hand, and the chains around his wrists unravelled, spinning at a hypersonic speed.
"How are you able to make it move so fast?" I asked.
Icarus held out his other hand. "Draw your sword, Remnant."
I drew Loz-Q.
Icarus stepped forward. "Thus far, you have been relying on The Blessing of a Priest, and the Mark of Ares, correct?"
"Yes." I replied.
Icarus stopped rotating the chain. "So you know that these abilities are merely temporary. They are not meant to be used as your main weapons."
I paused. Remembering what Ares had told me.
"It probably goes without sayin', but that mark I gave ya, it's just there to make your punk ass a little bit stronger. If you rely on it, you're retarded. It's just a placeholder for when you actually get strong."
"Icarus... you're telling me not to use my boosts?" I asked.
Icarus stepped forward. "What are your powers, Remnant? Inherent to you."
I thought about it. "Superhuman strength, agility, reflexes. Regeneration. And Combat Intuition. That's it." I said.
Icarus narrowed his eyes. "Regeneration..."
I was confused. "What do you mean? This is regeneration is it not?"
Icarus regarded me. "Your regeneration should be much weaker. It's strange it was never affected by the Remnant reduction."
"Remnant reduction?" I asked.
Icarus held out his hand, his chains warping into a man, the man began to glow, splitting into several parts of light.
"When a Paladin breaks apart, their essence gets divided. All Remnants share a portion of the Paladin's power, and when they are together, they equal their parent Paladin in might, possibly surpassing it. But one thing is clear... your healing is not Regeneration. If it was, it would not be this strong."
I looked at my hands. "But... if it isn't regeneration, what is it?"
Icarus closed his fist, extinguishing the hologram. He looked at me, then his body dematerialized, almost instantly, he was a distance away from me. I couldn't even process it. It was like he was even faster than the eye could see.
Icarus unwrapped his chains, as they fluttered around him. "Let's find out."
Icarus readied his stance, and shouted. Air emanated from him like a windstorm, and I didn't realize it until now... but I was petrified in fear. His very aura... it was overwhelmingly powerful. With Mogul, I fought him with no fear, I got through his aura, and battled him. But with Icarus... everything about him made me not want to approach him.
The Paladin of Light.
The man Decen failed to surpass.
I took a step backwards, my eyes wide.
"What's wrong? Arman?" Icarus asked. His body, numerous chains surrounded him as the winds continued to push everything back.
"I... I can't..." I gasped.
What was I doing? I was the Firstborn. I.. I needed to fight.
"Arman... if you don't fight... I will come for you."
I clenched my teeth. I needed to do this. I readied Loz-Q, and activated Pollux's blessing.
"More..." I muttered. "More!" My body began to hum with the Blessing's power, until my silver aura shone, the winds around Loz-Q counteracting the winds from Icarus' aura.
I held the blade in my hand, and cut my tattoo, as my body surged with the maximum potential of both of my boosts.
"ICARUS!" I roared. My whole body was creaking from the immense pressure of both boosts. The power, overwhelming.
"THIS IS MY CURRENT FULL POWER!" I shouted, gripping my sword so hard that my knuckles were white.
Icarus held out his hand, and beckoned me forward. "Come."
I yelled a battlecry, as I shot forward, the force of my stomp generating a massive shockwave as I broke through the sound barrier, charging at him with a massive strike of Loz-Q. Everything I had, all of my feelings, all of my pent up insecurities.
You cannot surpass your progenitor. But don't let that get you down, Remnant. For even your progenitor has tried to climb walls that he could not possibly traverse. The one being he always fell behind.
I was reminded of that once more, from when I had my meeting with Kyrael. Looking at Icarus' blue eyes. Cold. Calculating. It was like nothing fazed him. As if all the troubles in this world was so insignificant, because he knew he was already strong enough to take them head on. It was just watching everything play out for him.
I gritted my teeth. I couldn't let this get to me. I needed to do this. I needed to show Icarus my full power.
I swung as hard as I could as Icarus smiled, intercepting it with his chain. The clash created a massive shockwave that shook the entire city. Cracks and crates radiated from our clash.
"Hmm." Icarus said. My eyes widened.
He had stopped my blow with one hand, his face, calm. Unfazed.
I leapt back.
"Your reliance on those two boosts is enough for me to see why you have fallen behind your brothers." Icarus said.
I stumbled back, staring at my dislocated shoulder. I popped it back into place, growling in pain.
Icarus held out his hand. "Again!"
Everything felt hopeless. I couldn't beat him. I couldn't beat Mogul. I couldn't beat Deacon. I couldn't... I couldn't...
"Arman. If you let this get to you, how can you possibly call yourself Decen's Remnant? What would Decen say to you if he was here right now?"
I gasped. "He would... have been most displeased."
Icarus stepped forward, the chains dancing with his glowing blue eyes, his brown curly hair. "You wanted to protect Lyra, did you not? You wanted to protect your family. But all you are doing is cowering. Lamenting and self loathing."
I clenched my fists, staring at the ground.
Icarus took another step forward. "Why... do you fight?"
Why do I fight. Because I want to protect. Because there are people I want to protect.
A spark of fire sizzled on my left arm, the flames reigniting. Not just physically, but also inside me. My heart beating faster.
Icarus sighed. "Perhaps my time with you is wasted. I might just consider training Lucius. Considering he is the leader anyway. You are mere fodder."
"NO." I growled, as the flames reached my shoulders.
"MORE.... MORE MORE MORE!" I roared, going beyond my limits. Loz-Q's ice forming a massive arctic wing, and the flames of war, turning into rage. I could feel my body had already gone well beyond its limits. I had to do this. I needed to. I needed to give it all I got.
"RRRAAAAAAAAAGHHHH!!" I screamed, as I powered up even further. I glared at Icarus and blasted forward, launching a massive flurry of slashes.
But despite this, Icarus kept up, dodging, blocking, deflecting.
"Primal... rage." Icarus noted, as he grabbed both of my arms, and lifted me into the air with his chains.
I needed to get stronger. I needed to be stronger.
I needed to...
Icarus zipped and materialized in front of me. His face, expressionless, dead. Suddenly, all the rage and power left my body as I stared at his face, horrified.
"No. You don't get it. This fight is over."
Icarus slammed me in the chest with a chain, as I flew into the ground like a bullet, smashing it hard.
Everything turned black.
Chapter 111 (Remnant 1)
"Stop! Icarus! What are you doing?!" I heard a girl's voice scream.
I suddenly snapped awake. Icarus had pinned me on the ground, defeated, I looked at the numerous chains that were on top of me.
Merrow had run up to Icarus and was trying to yank the chains off.
Icarus simply regarded her. "If Arman is unable to get past this roadblock, this is all he will be worth in his battle."
Merrow glared at him. "He is still my master's Remnant! He is MY Arman! You have no right to do this to him!"
Icarus shook his head. "Guardian Rivenlight. Has Decen showed you nothing? Has his many years of warrior resolve not made any impact on you?" He scolded.
Merrow was quiet, as Icarus ignored her and grabbed my collar, lifting me from the ground.
"Remnant 1 of Decen. I am going to put this to you straight. Because I know Decen isn't around to nail it into your head. It is only when a warrior is backed into a corner, do their true colors show. What separates a man from a coward."
My eyes widened. I knew this. I knew this saying. I was never told it, but for some reason, I knew. I heard it before.
Instantly, the moment he said that, something inside me ignited.
Icarus sensed it too.
"Yes. Yes. That is the way, Arman Wan."
Energy began to swirl all around me. A white and gold energy. This wasn't like any boost I ever had. This wasn't the Blessing of Pollux. This wasn't the Mark of Ares. This was something else.
I began to levitate from the ground, facing the sky.
It is only when a warrior is backed into a corner, do their true colors show. What separates a man from a coward.
"I am not a coward. I am a warrior. I am..."
I powered up even more with this energy, closing my eyes.
Decen. The Paladin of War. He got this strong because he not only never gave up. He never let failure get in his way. His vision, to become the strongest Paladin.
"I won't let anything get in my way." I muttered. I could feel my body changing.
"Because I will become strong."
I clenched both of my fists, as I roared. Power blasted from my body as Icarus slid back.
I thought about everybody. Lyra and Kaius. My days with them in their little hut. Kaius teaching a little version of me how to read. How to eat with manners. Lyra showing me her bow. Telling me they were friends.
My first words.
"I will protect my friends."
Icarus held out his chains. "Come, Arman Wan. Let us see your true power."
I glared at him, my energy had completely evolved my body. My black hair, was now spiky. Glowing gold. My eyes, also gold. My aura, swirling with white and gold spirals of power. Merrow stared at me.
I glared at Icarus. "I WILL BECOME STRONG. TO PROTECT EVERYBODY I LOVE!" I screamed, and charged forward.
Icarus smiled, and put his hand up, as hundreds of chains came flying my way. I felt them cut into my body, but it didn't hurt. I smashed right through them, landing on the ground. My wounds healed instantly, as I spun around and launched a massive haymaker at Icarus, who blocked them with his chains.
"MORE!!!!" I screamed, as I let even more power out, the chains cracking from the force of my punch.
Icarus grinned, as I smashed through the barrier, and held out my hand, Loz-Q flying into it. The windstorms becoming amplified by my new power. The frost glowing gold like my aura.
I brought my arm back, and swung down, but Icarus intercepted it with both of his hands.
"Good. But you still have a long way to go, Remnant." Icarus began to power up himself. "Because now I'm going to take this seriously too."
The Paladin levitated, and two massive glowing wings of light exploded from his back, as green electricity sparked from his body.
"What... what is this?" I muttered, as Icarus won the clash easily, forcing me back.
"COME! ARMAN!" Icarus shouted, his body fully illuminating the silver city.
I gritted my teeth, looking at Merrow, who gave me a nod.
I readied Loz-Q. "Here I come. ICARUS!" I roared, as I summoned my new power once more, blasting upwards as I yelled my battlecry. Icarus smiled, and yelled his own battlecry as we clashed, everything turning bright white as I felt everything leave my body.
Chapter 112 (Remnant 9)
"Sophia!" I shouted, as I ran out of the temple.
Where was she?
"Sophia, come back! Please!" I pleaded. I couldn't find her anywhere, as Kanade followed me.
I turned around and grabbed the guy and lifted him off his feet.
"You damn RELIGIOUS BASTARD!" I growled. "You're going to help me find her or no amount of purification is gonna fix what I'm gonna do to you!"
Kanade regarded me with sympathy. "I'm sorry, Lucius. Let us find her together."
I ran around the city, trying desperately to find her.
I ran up to several people who were enjoying themselves in a cafe.
"Have you guys seen an elf girl run by?"
"Uhhh an elf?"
"Nevermind!" I muttered, as I ran across the city, searching for Sophia.
The sun began to go down as I heard rumbling from the distance. "Sophia?" I asked.
Kanade shook his head. "It is Paladin Icarus. He is training our brother."
"Yes. He seeks strength. It is only natural for Icarus to do it in his brutal ways. I personally don't like it, but if it helps in his growth I suppose."
"What is it with you and violence man."
Kanade looked at me. "I don't like violence. We were all created by the Lord. Why must we hurt one another? Why not just love each other?"
"I.... ugh. Look. Sometimes some people just don't want to play nice. You don't got a choice. Try saying that to Mogul."
The sky became dark, and I still couldn't find her. I was fed up. Between Kanade's annoying preaching, and the hole in my chest, the longer I spent searching for Sophie the more hopeless it became.
"DAMMIT! SOPHIA!!!" I yelled at the sky. I fell to my knees as tears streamed down my face.
"I'm sorry, Lucius." Kanade knelt in front of me, he looked guilty. "I should not have... made you confess to her."
I took out Pariah, staring at it. "This... this sword. My powers. Everything. Is a fucking curse!" I screamed as I threw the blade into the water.
Kanade regarded me. "Lucius, everything happens for a reason."
"ENOUGH of this reason crap! ENOUGH of your religious crap! I've had ENOUGH!" I shouted. I grabbed Kanade by the shoulders and shook him as his head bobbed back and forth.
"I don't want to live this life! I don't want to be a leader to the Remnants I don't want this at all! I'm so alone! I feel like the only way out is to die!" I sobbed, as Kanade opened his arms, letting me fall into his embrace.
"Lucius, you're not alone." Kanade said.
"Shut up. Just shut up." I sobbed. "I... All I had was Sophia. Every time I'm with her, I feel like I can be free from my restraints. But... seeing that sword. Seeing my STUPID arm. I'm reminded of what I am."
Kanade patted my head, as he said nothing.
That night I walked with Kanade back to the temple.
"Lucius... I just wanted to let you know that no matter how bad your life gets, it's no reason to take your own life. The Creator gave you this life for a reason, but you need to know it's not for that."
I had no more energy to argue back. I just wanted Sophia back.
I sighed. "Thanks." I muttered.
I watched as several angels came out and partied with the people. "It's weird to see angels hanging out with humans. How does that even work? Aren't angels supposed to be in heaven or something?"
"What's so funny?"
Kanade looked at me. "Lucius, those aren't angels. If they were, this would be heaven. That would make no sense."
Kanade chuckled as we entered the temple, to our rooms. "The Silver City is not heaven. The Winged Warriors are not the angels you read in the Bible. These beings are a different race. The Lord's Kingdom is much greater. The angels of the Lord and his power are beyond anything imaginable."
"Well, if they are beyond anything maybe he could help out with our Mogul problem." I grumbled.
Kanade opened the door. "That's not how it works. We must have faith in our Father, for he knows best. We just need to have faith."
Kanade smiled gently, putting his hand on my arm. "I'm sure Sophia will come back. Have faith!"
I entered my room, which was shared with Sophia. I sat on the bed. Weaponless. I glared at my right forearm. The black and red corroded matter that replaced my old arm.
"I'm... a monster." I muttered.
"No you're not." A girl's voice appeared behind me. I spun around, not believing my eyes.
"Sophia...." I whispered, as I ran up to her and crushed her in a hug.
"Luke... why did you keep something like this a secret?"
I pulled away. "I... I knew it would hurt you. A lot. I didn't want to devastate you..."
"It would have to at some point, Luke. I'm not angry about that, I'm just... disappointed that you kept something like that a secret from me."
I stared at the ground, but Sophia leaned in and wrapped me in her arms. "But it was partly my fault, for running out on you like that. I just... can't imagine losing you. Living my life without you. Because every second I spent by your side was the best moments of my life."
I managed a smirk. "Ditto."
Chapter 113 (Remnant 1)
"Let's call it a wrap." Icarus said, as I fell to the ground, my transformation depleted. My hair reverted back to its original swept black.
"I can still fight." I gritted my teeth, struggling to my feet, but Icarus scoffed, waving his hand, as a chain smacked me straight in the face, sending me flying backwards.
"Decen's self destructive tenacity has lived on in you, Remnant."
I breathed hard, staring at the sky.
"Kyrael told me... that you were his closest friend."
Icarus pursed his lips. "Is that so."
I sat up.
"Decen wanted to become the strongest. Perhaps he recognized and respected your strength." I said. But Icarus knelt in front of me, his blue eyes shining in the sky.
"You seem to admire your progenitor very much."
Icarus helped me to my feet.
"Who would not? A fearsome warrior. He is what I strive to become. So I can protect my loved ones from Mogul, for when I battle him again."
Icarus gazed at the Silver City.
"Decen was very powerful. His drive and mindset made him have the most potential out of our Paladin Squad. But he had many flaws."
I looked at him. "Flaws?"
Icarus chuckled. "Brash, headstrong. He never understood that there was more to life than fighting and seeking strength. He left his humanity behind, and resorted to... questionable things."
Something told me that it was too dangerous to ask what that was.
"I wish to seek strength as well. Is there anything wrong with that?"
Icarus put his hands on my shoulders.
"My dear young Remnant, there is nothing wrong with seeking to be stronger. What's wrong is what you're willing to do to attain that strength. What you choose to sacrifice and throw away."
I looked at my hands. What I chose to throw away.
Icarus laughed. "Well, certainly you are better than good old Decen. He always had a flaw or two. You seem to be very kind, and well mannered."
Icarus took a step forward, but suddenly put his hand to his head. "What..."
"Icarus!" I ran up to him, but he held out his hand. "No. Stay... who... who are you? Where am I?"
I looked at him in concern. "Paladin Icarus, it's me, Arman? Are you alright?"
"I am... I was dead. I'm supposed to be..." His eyes widened. "YOU."
Icarus suddenly grabbed me by the throat and smashed me against a wall. Several civilians scattered.
"You killed me." Icarus growled.
My heart felt like it was about to burst from my chest. "Paladin Icarus... I don't know what you're..."
"You betrayed me, and you killed me. For my power. How could you do this....
"I... Icarus... I'm not..."
"Let him go." Merrow commanded, as she flew in, slashing at Icarus with blinding speed with her newly restored spear. It was almost like slow motion. Droplets of blood flying from Icarus' face as Merrow had leapt in, her wide green eyes glaring at Icarus' surprised expression. Icarus let go of me and zipped backwards, as Merrow stood in front of me.
"Are you okay Arman?" Merrow asked.
"Merrow... something happened to Paladin Icarus... he had a headache, a migraine, and then he completely forgot who I was."
Merrow gritted her teeth, and positioned her spear. "We'll figure out what the hell happened later. As of now, he's an enemy."
Icarus got to his feet, still clutching his head. "Guardian Merrow... why. What is this." His face contorted in anger.
"You conspired against me, with Decen."
Merrow's face didn't change, as she aimed the point of the spear at Icarus' face.
"I know nothing I say will help change or make me any less guilty than I was those many years ago. But your main objective is to harm my Paladin's Remnant. As Decen's Guardian, I am Arman's as well. You will not hurt him."
Icarus managed to regain his composure. "You do not stand a chance against me, Neptunian. What makes you think you can defeat me, if even Decen couldn't?"
Merrow didn't care. She blasted forward with a wave of Hydropower, summoning multiple spears out of the water, and blasting Icarus with hundreds of jabs, but Icarus held out his hand, as it glowed bright with light.
"Shine through, the darkness of war." Icarus said in a booming voice, as the light completely dissipated all of Merrow's constructs. Icarus zipped forward, but Merrow caught the chain attack with her spear.
I was frozen in fear. Why was Merrow fighting Icarus? She had no chance against the man who... who...
"Arman.... RUN!" Merrow shouted, as she spun around to try to catch Icarus with a sneak attack, but Icarus' reflexes. His unparalleled reflexes, deflected the strike, and hundreds of chains wrapped around the Guardian as she flew into the sky.
I got to my feet and my body instantly turned around.
What... what am I doing?! I screamed at myself.
Turn around... and fight!
But my body refused, as if all my senses took over, telling me to run away.
"Paladin Decen, you shall not escape from me." Icarus boomed, as a massive chain ripped from the ground.
My body froze. All the superhuman reflexes, Combat Intuition, it was all there. It was ready for me to fight. But every time I wanted to step forward, I was reminded once again.
Of Decen's seemingly immeasurable power. He was stronger than Koios. He defeated Diablos easily. He destroyed five entire empires with one attack.
This Decen, the man that I felt I was always chasing behind...
Eclipsed by the Paladin of Light.
How could anyone stand a chance...
How could anybody...
I heard a thump, as Merrow smashed into the ground face first in front of me. I stared at her, in horror.
Merrow tried to get to her feet by planting her hands on the ground, lifting her face from the rubble. Her face was bloodied, and one of her eyes was closed.
"Arman... get out of here. Run..."
"Lady Rivenlight..." I stammered, tears pooled in my eyes, but Merrow put her hand on my leg. She looked at me with a smile.
"Arman, it's going to be okay. I'll always keep you safe. That time you almost died to Mogul will be the very last time..."
The chain in front of me wrapped around my midsection as Icarus suddenly appeared in a flash of light and white mist. His face was full of rage, and made my heart crawl up into my throat.
Icarus had bested me easily holding back.
And now he was angry. Bloodlusted.
Icarus glared at me, and lifted his hand, as tons of chains returned back to his forearm.
"Paladin Decen, you've done the unforgivable. Despite this, instead of seeking atonement, you hid behind your Guardian. What happened to all that warrior honour? Has cowardice replaced the remaining humanity you have left?"
Merrow propped herself on her spear and limped in front of me, her green hair was streaked with red from the blood.
"Paladin Icarus... this isn't Decen. Something has happened. You're not living in the correct time."
"I know what has happened. I know. A betrayal from who I thought was my own brother. This demands justice."
Merrow grimaced as she used one of her arms to drag me behind her. I never felt so helpless.
Merrow turned to the side as I saw the side of her face.
"I will protect you Arman. It's going to be okay."
Icarus raised an eyebrow. "Will it, Merrow?" Icarus raised his hand, as a ton of chains began to unwrap, twisting and forming a giant blade.
"This Chainblade begs to differ. Decen always loved to fight with blades. And so does this boy. I shall do him one last honour, by slaying his Guardian by the blade. Just as he did to me."
"NO. STOP!" I screamed.
Icarus regarded me.
"You do not love your Guardian. You only loved yourself."
"That... that isn't true!" I shouted, without realizing what I was saying. It felt like someone was speaking through me. I looked at my reflection from Icarus' Chainblade. My eyes...
"I loved both Merrow and you. The only family I ever had. But my pride and ego... it clouded my judgement. And now I am ready to pay my penance. But leave my Guardian out of this." My voice had deepened, and my accent had changed.
Merrow turned her head, in shock.
Icarus glared at me. "You... They all repent, when it is too late."
Suddenly, I doubled over, my eyes returned back to their normal brown irises as Merrow held me.
I stared at Icarus in horror, as the Paladin brought down the blade on Merrow's neck.
"GET AWAY FROM MERROW AND ARMAN, YOU PUNK ASS BITCH!" A familiar voice exploded from the corner of my vision as a black and red streak appeared. The Chainblade clanged against Pariah, as Lucius had closed the distance, his Spike Clad fully assembled around his right arm and right shoulder.
"What is this..." Icarus muttered. "Two of you?"
Lucius growled and roared as he pushed Icarus back with immense force.
Icarus lowered his Chainblade and regarded Lucius. "Your arm... there is no denying it. You are the real one."
Lucius clenched his fists as more Spike Clad covered his left arm, creating an array of large spikes at his knuckles. Brickhouse readied Pariah with his other arm, glaring at Icarus.
"I don't give a shit if you're a Paladin. I don't give a shit if you were my father's best buddy. You attacked my friends. Every drop of blood from Merrow that hits this ground, is another foot up your ass. Get ready, Paladin. You're facing me now."
Icarus scowled. "Then come. Decen. Let us finish this fight. And I will show you the differences in our power."
Chapter 114 (Remnant 9)
"Explain shitstain." I grabbed Kanade by the collar.
"Paladin Icarus... how did he... this is not supposed to happen..." Kanade gasped.
Sophia yelped as a rock came hurtling her way. I grabbed her with one arm and blasted the rock into cinders with a solid punch with my other.
"Icarus's gone batshit crazy. We're going to put him down. Are you coming or not." I glared at Kanade, but his devastated expression was enough to tell me he was finished.
Sophia walked up to Kanade.
"Kanade, we need your help. Icarus is out of control, if you can talk to him, it might calm him down." She said, gently.
Kanade's eyes welled up in tears. "Icarus... Uncle Icarus how could this happen."
This guy wasn't going to cooperate.
"Sophia, bind him. He's coming with us whether he likes it or not."
Sophia hesitated, but chanted regardless, a spell of binding, as her grimoire opened to the corresponding page.
Kanade became wrapped in runes. "No. You two don't understand. You CAN'T fight Paladin Icarus. His power is overwhelming!"
"We just need to hold him off. Then you can do your little Christian speel and fix this damn mess."
Kanade stared at the ground. "No. Paladin Icarus is not the type of being that you could simply hold off. His power is so gargantuan that it even dwarfs Paladin Decen, our progenitor, in size. Our only chance is to run."
Sophia summoned another spell, as she carried us to the sounds of fighting.
"Arman... Merrow..." I muttered. I couldn't lose Arman again. And I certainly couldn't let Merrow get hurt over this. No damn way.
I turned to Kanade. "You're gonna tell me what the hell is going on, or I knock you off this magic raft. Merrow said Icarus was supposed to be dead, yet he's alive. I thought Mogul killed all the Paladins. Now he's going berserk. What did you people do to him."
Kanade sighed. "Our people... when Arman had killed off the majority of our forces, we were forced to sought other ways to protect our kingdom. The elders of the Silver City recognized my Remnant nature, and considered using their celestial powers to revive Paladin Decen himself. But this was unsuccessful, because he had already distributed himself into us. He lives on in us."
Kanade closed his eyes, tears running down his cheeks.
"So they chose someone else. Someone better. One of the few Paladins who were even stronger than Decen. Because if anyone could protect us, it would be a High Ranking Paladin. So they took the remaining essences of the Paladin of Light, and rebuilt his body. Then recreated him."
I raised an eyebrow. "And you were against this? Surely you know Frankensteining this whole thing would lead to bad side effects."
Kanade sniffled. "I was well aware. In fact, some of the elders were too. So the night Icarus' body regained consciousness from the revival ritual... one of them tried to end his life. That was the first time Icarus had snapped. He killed all of the elders, until he saw me."
Kanade looked into the distance, onward, at the sounds of battle. I wanted to tell Sophia to hurry up, but she was straining from using her magic to carry all of us. I felt terrible to make her overexert herself like that.
"Icarus recognized me as Decen's Remnant. He saw that I had no joy of battle. No thirst for violence, and he took care of me. Like an Uncle. And I saw him as someone I depended on. I grew up with him protecting me, as I lived my days serving both the Silver City and the Church of God. It was then did I realize that Icarus had his own demons to purify. Our journey together, we had lived together for so many years."
So that was it. Because of the slaughter of most of the Silver City's protectors, the people of the Silver City got desperate, and tried to bring Icarus back to life from the dead. When Icarus went insane, he killed everybody, but found Kanade. Ended up taking care of Kanade as the two lived together. All this time.
"Kanade, if you care about Icarus so much. Then help us. Let us put him to rest. You of all people know that he should have died that day. To force him back into the living is wrong."
Kanade's expression was void. "Uncle Icarus..." He muttered.
"We're... here..." Sophia muttered as she brought us to the ground and collapsed in my arms.
"Sophia... it's okay. I got you."
Sophia smiled, closing her eyes. "Go, Luke. Save your brother. Protect everybody."
I gently laid Sophia on the grass, and got to my feet, facing Kanade.
"Kanade, you know what you need to do. Find a way to talk him down, and I'll deal the killing blow."
"No!" Kanade ran up to me and grabbed my collar. "Please. Lucius, I beg of you! Don't kill him. He's... he's all I have left." Kanade buried his face in my shirt.
I put my hand on his head. "I thought you said you had God by your side."
Kanade sobbed. "I do... but Icarus is like my father. He's the only family I have. I would rather have him kill me... then to know I helped kill him. I can't. I can't live with myself knowing I let my family die in front of my very eyes!"
"Kanade... you have a family." I wiped the tears from his eyes.
"I am your family. Arman and I. Merrow. I am your brother. Icarus... he may had been your uncle, but look at him."
Kanade stared at Icarus, who was raging and destroying everything, rambling nonsensical things, and clutching his head.
"Let him rest, Kanade."
Kanade put his head in my chest. "I... I can't. Please. Do what you want. But do not get me involved. I can't watch. I can't..."
There was no getting to this kid. I turned to Sophia. "Sophie."
Sophia looked at me. "What is it?"
"Take Kanade, Arman, and Merrow. Take them somewhere far. Merrow mentioned she had Fury look after and mentor another Remnant. I want you to get Merrow to take you guys there. Regroup them all. I will hold off Paladin Icarus with everything I have. Then once you guys are all back, we can take him. Together. The combined might of all seven of us might be enough to take down Icarus."
Sophie was horrified. "No! Luke I can't just leave you here! I will fight by your side."
"No. You'll only get in the way. Look at how fast Icarus is. If it's true he's even stronger than Decen, who was one of the most powerful beings in existence, there is no way you can evade him. Only I can take enough punishment until the others arrive. Go. This is not up for debate."
Sophia looked conflicted. I walked up to her and put my arms around her waist.
Sophia blushed. "Luke, I can't..."
I leaned in and kissed her, then pulled away. "Pretty please?"
Sophia managed a small smile. "When this is over, I want a new set of gear."
"I'm sure we can afford it."
Sophia pulled me into another kiss. "Don't get killed. Stay alive. For me."
I turned to a rampaging Icarus, summoning the spikes on my right arm, and drawing Pariah. And charged.
Chapter 115 (Remnant 9)
"No! Lucius I cannot leave you!" Arman shouted.
I turned around and looked at the group. Arman had gotten to his feet, but I was guessing he was pissing his pants just looking at Icarus. I mean, who wouldn't. The guy was even stronger than our Progenitor. This dude was at the top of the world.
The strongest Paladin.
But regardless. I lowered Pariah on the ground, facing the Paladin.
"Arman, you're in no shape to fight this guy. Do as I say. Go to the world of Remnant 5. Take him and Fury, and come back here, united. That's the only chance we got. Someone has to stay behind and hold this guy off."
"Lucius, you are my brother. I can't put you through this. Listen to yourself. You are fighting Paladin Icarus, on your own. You can't beat him!"
"Who said anything about beating?" I asked.
Icarus stepped forward. "This has gone long enough." He snapped.
I wasn't having it. I summoned everything I had, as my arm sparked with red electricity. I slammed Pariah into the ground and launched an overwhelming number of spikes at the Paladin, who began deflecting them with his chains at super high speed. This guy's speed was ridiculous. It would only be a matter of time before he got out of my spike barrage.
Arman ran up to me. "I can't. I can't leave you to die!"
I turned to him. "Arman... this is the only way. The combined power of us and Merrow isn't enough. You know that. Go with her."
Arman looked at me, his face was caked in dust and tears.
"What is it?"
"Do you remember... our first encounter with Mogul? How you chose to give yourself up for our survival?"
Arman's eyes widened. I continued, giving him a smile.
"It is now my turn. Though, I think fighting off Icarus probably isn't as badass as fighting off Mogul. But still. Come back soon."
I gave Arman a thumbs up, as Merrow grabbed Arman.
"LUCIUS! NO!" Arman screamed, as Merrow grabbed my brother in an embrace.
"Arman... he needs to do this. It's okay." Merrow looked at me, her eyes also full of tears.
"Don't let us down, Brickhouse." She said, her face determined.
I nodded grimly. Huh. Brickhouse. Never thought I would hear that name again.
Chapter 116 (Remnant 9)
I woke up in a ton of rubble.
The "fight" didn't even last four seconds, and Icarus had already figured me out, slamming me with his ridiculously heavy chains and launching me through several buildings. I could hear a bunch of screaming from the civilians as they tried to escape.
"Call the guard!"
"Where is Erion?!"
I got to my feet and looked at my hands. The Spike Cladding had cracked and large parts of it fell off. I willed them to re-patch.
Icarus walked towards me, his face, sinister. White glowing and steaming chains swirled all around him.
"Paladin Decen, I am disappointed. Why are you holding back against a superior opponent? Fight me at your best! You know that more than anyone."
I gritted my teeth. "I am..." I grumbled. This guy...
I brandished Pariah, as red electricity sparked across my body. I couldn't beat Paladin Icarus. All I had to do was hold out. But if I just kept taking his hits like a tank, I wouldn't last long. His blows were devastating.
The spikes along my calves thickened, and I blasted forward, leaving behind a trail of red lightning. I zoomed past Icarus and brought Pariah back, but the moment I went past, Icarus' eyes had already followed my movement, and he looked... well. Bored.
I roared as I slashed down with everything I had, but Icarus brought his chain up, and pushed me into the sky.
"What is this pathetic power you display? You dare call yourself a Paladin of War?" Icarus taunted, as he whipped a massive chain down with a blade, as it caught me in the shoulder.
"Aaah!" I yelled in pain as the chain hooked and dragged me across several buildings.
I hit the pavement face first.
I heard footsteps. Dammit. I grasped the ground, trying to get away, but a chain pierced me from the back.
Icarus held out his hand, and more and more chains began piercing me as my back exploded in pain. The Paladin lifted me into the air as I faced him.
"This is... disappointing." Icarus said, with an emotionless expression. Suddenly, face contorted with anger.
Icarus' face flashed with Mogul's. His sinister, dark, scarred and ugly face. His bloodred eyeballs. Nothing but blood. The blood of his victims.
"Hey, Icarus." I said, lowering my head.
Icarus raised an eyebrow.
I felt my heart beat, but at a greater intensity. My heart rate going up.
"Ya shouldn't have said that." My voice low, and dangerous, as I felt everything coming loose. All that rage. All that bottled up anger for that Aspect.
"I'm not supposed to beat you... but you're making it real hard for me." I seethed, as the Spike Formation climbed up my arm, up my face, as a horn protruded from my head, my teeth becoming fangs, my eyes glowing red, as half of my face became black and corrupted. My other arm, becoming cladded as well, my hands becoming claws, and my feet plated up, spikes all over my body, and protruding from my back.
"DON'T REGRET WHAT HAPPENS NEXT." I roared, as I gripped the chains around me, and shattering it with a defiant yell.
Icarus was sent flying into a building as I landed on the ground, red steam coming from my body and the corners of my mouth.
Focus. Focus Lucius.
I glared at Icarus, inching forward, Pariah, covered in the same spikes, glowing red as electrical discharge and air circulated all around me from my aura of rage.
Sophia. I will come back for you. Icarus isn't worth turning into a monster for.
Icarus got to his feet. "You emit rage. A ravenous, primal form. Going back to your old habits, I see."
I stopped. Old habits? You're telling me this was what Decen used to do?
But before I could react, Icarus had closed the distance, jabbing into me in several places with his chain. He tried to yank me from the ground, but I was too heavy.
"Quite the Brick House you are." Icarus was amused.
I tried to say something snarky, but it came out as "GRRRAARRRR". I grabbed the chains and turned, spinning the Paladin around and flinging him into the sky, but Icarus dissipated into mist, materializing in front of me, and swung his Chainblade. I spun around and intercepted his blade with Pariah.
"You fight with passion, Decen. That was one trait that I always admired about you." Icarus seethed.
"But that is all you have. And a warrior with just passion and no ways of carrying it out..." Icarus began to glow white, as two wings sprouted from his back, a green glow, and stars floating from his feet.
What the hell.
Icarus grimaced. "Will forever look at his comrades from below!" The Paladin overpowered me and flung me into the air.
"What... the hell?!?!?!?!" I yelled as I was flung so high up I could see the entire Silver City as a tiny spot. Clouds surrounding me. A white dot, turning into a fast streak of light zoomed past my vision.
I looked up in surprise.
"A winged angel..." I muttered, as Icarus brandished his gigantic wings, which were the sizes of two buses, glowing bright white. His aura, was green filled with green sparks and stars. Icarus brought his hand up, and hundreds of chains emanated from his wrists, combining together into a giant chain with a blade at the end.
"You always believed I beat you because of sheer luck. You were unable to accept that I was stronger than you. So now, I shall show you."
Icarus's bladed chain began to swing around into a crazy cyclone, as the clouds all around me came together in his vortex. This dude was changing the very weather?!
"Holy shit." I muttered.
Chapter 117 (Remnant 5)
I walked in on probably the biggest shock of my life. Merrow, terribly injured. A cute elf girl that reminded me of those schoolgirls from anime, and two guys. Judging from the way they looked like me, it didn't take a genius to know these two were my Remnants.
"Merrow holy shit, you're hurt!" I ran forward, but Deacon appeared from the shadows and held me back.
"Merrow, why have you returned. What has happened." Deacon said. Merrow breathed hard as she tried to get to her feet. One guy, the athletic dude with the coolest sword I had ever seen stepped forward.
"You two must come with us. We need your help."
Deacon narrowed his eyes. "Mogul?"
"No. But he is too powerful. We need your help... Fury. Lucius is sacrificing himself to hold him off, but he can't keep up."
I looked nervously at Deacon. He brought up the "L word". I was half expecting the guy to burst into flames, but he kept his composure, his hair covering his eyes.
"Arman Wan, I refuse to help. Not until Lucius is dead."
Arman's eyes widened, and the elf girl gasped, her eyes watering. She ran up to Deacon, grabbing his collar. "How could you say something like that?! He is your brother! He's doing everything he can, sacrificing his life!"
Deacon pushed her away. "Lucius Cassidy has done nothing for me. He treated me like fodder. I see no incentive to rescue him. The only worth he has to me, is a means to wear down whoever we are fighting."
The other Remnant put his hands on the elf, who looked like she was going to commit mass genocide, her face, murderous. "Sophia, please, calm down."
Sophia glared at the Remnant. "Get your hands off of me, Kanade. Lucius is going to DIE. Can you for once, just forget about this bullshit about him not caring about you?! He loved you, you just couldn't see it for yourself! Isn't this enough to show that he loves his brothers?! Giving up his life to fight Paladin Icarus?!"
Deacon glanced upward. "Icarus? You mean the guy who is stronger than Decen?"
Arman approached Deacon, until they were face to face. "Yes. Lucius is fighting him alone. To buy time. For us. We can't let it go to vain."
Meena got up from her seat. "Deacon, we need to go."
Deacon shook his head. "I have not forgiven that ass hat for all he has done to me. I will fight Icarus with you. But only when the pathetic excuse of a Remnant is dead, and has used up his maximum worth in wearing him down."
I spoke up cautiously. "Ummm Fury? You know he's our brother right? He may have been a huge jerk, but everybody gets a second chance-"
Fury shot me a glare. "Actually you know what, fuck that guy ya' know."
Sophia shot me a glare. "But come on, I mean what's one more guy to fight him?"
Merrow looked at Deacon. "Deacon, I know Lucius has hurt you. But at the end of the day, he loved you. Please. Just give him one chance."
Arman grimaced, suddenly stepping forward and grabbing Deacon by the collar, and lifting him up. Merrow looked shocked.
"Damn you, Deacon. You are going to help us. I don't care how. I will force you to help us." Merrow was shaking in surprise. I had no idea Arman's little rage burst would make her surprised.
"Ar... Arman... put him down, please. This isn't like you-"
Arman cut her off. "I am finished. I am finished being the pacifist in this forsaken war. You take your stupid qualms with our brother to his face, when you save him. But right now, you are coming with us. You too, Thomas."
I widened my eyes. "Yep, no complaints here!"
Deacon glared at Arman. "You will have to beat me to a pulp for that to happen, Firstborn. I don't think you learned your lesson, from when I fought both you and Lucius. But I held back when I fought you."
Arman held his glare. "Then I will show you the true differences in our power. I will not hold back. I will show you why I am the Firstborn."
Chapter 118 (Remnant 1)
I'm sorry Pollux. I am no longer the kind man you raised me to be.
Because this is war.
And as a warrior, I need to do things to protect the people I love.
I took out Loz-Q, as Fury powered up his Demonfire, manifesting four tendrils. He put on his mask and lowered his head.
"Just know this, Arman. I will not be holding back. So you better not take this fight lightly."
Deacon Chow. The Fury. All offence, not defence. He was known for his high pain tolerance. But it didn't matter how much pain you could tolerate.
Fury shot forward, and I met his strike with Loz-Q, the frost counteracting his fires on his tendrils. Deacon's mask was unsettling, his one eye, sinister, glowing orange. Focus.
CI showed a million silhouettes, as I instantly analyzed Fury's fighting style.
Fury spun around and launched his tendrils at me at a rapid pace as I jumped around, evading, but one got me in the chest, and Fury flung me into the air.
"The same, as always." He said, but I grabbed the tendril, and sliced it with Loz-Q, launching several arcs of frost at him. Fury deflected it all, as he grabbed my face with a tendril, and launched me into the side of a mountain.
I smashed into the ground, and instantly activated Pollux's blessing, boosting my speed and abilities as I jolted out of the way before Fury could dive in and decapitate me. His tendrils had transformed into massive fiery blades, as he walked up to me, powering up.
Go on, Firstborn. Use your two boosts. They stand no chance against my power.
I readied Loz-Q, my silver glow becoming brighter. Loz-Q's white steamy frost amplifying into a huge snowstorm. I used this as propulsion as I blasted at Fury. Fury leapt forward as well, launching a massive flurry of strikes from all four of his bladed tendrils as CI and my reflexes tried to deflect them all. He began to overpower me, as I felt more and more of his blades cut through my skin. I began to regenerate, but Fury impaled me with two of his blades.
"Aaaugh!" I yelled, as Fury leapt in the air, spinning around, one of his tendrils becoming brighter than the others.
The blade smashed me into the midsection as I broke through the ground, destroying it and the entire landform as I sunk right through the ground, cracks and darkness closing around me as Fury had created a massive chasm.
"Thomas!" Merrow shouted.
"On it." He said from the distance, as his body glowed green, and he held out his hand, massive pieces of rock suspended in midair. Telekinesis. I see.
I'm right here, dumbass. Fury closed in, but I barrel rolled out of the way, and sliced down. Fury spun around, taking the slash head on, his face not showing signs of pain, as he grabbed my face and threw me into the air.
ANGELBREAKER BLAST, FULL GATLING.
Suddenly, thousands upon thousands of orbs of light appeared from the ground. My eyes widened as they began to close in on me. Like a massive torrent of fireballs coming at me.
"MORE." I roared, as I pointed Loz-Q at the storm.
"GIVE ME YOUR POWER... KOIOS!" I screamed as a massive windstorm blew the balls away, exploding all around me.
Enough games. Fury said, as he began to power up.
It is time to burn The Remnant's voice boomed, as he took off his mask, half his face becoming a black skull, and his black and orange flames becoming more intense. The same aura he had when he battled Lucius and I. His full power.
I aimed Loz-Q behind me as I blasted to him.
Fury and I yelled our battlecries as we clashed, sending a massive shockwave, shaking the entire place. Thomas held out his hand, and prevented the shockwaves from entering the neighbouring cities.
I was starting to lose the clash, as Fury glared at me.
You are not using your other boost. Are you underestimating me? You are foolish.
I didn't need the Mark of Ares. Because I had something stronger. My body began to glow gold, as Fury's expression changed.
Wha.... What is this. He said, as his blade stopped inching closer to my face. My eyes began to change colour, my black hair rising upwards, becoming spikier.
I began to win the clash, as I could feel the same power I had used against Icarus surge through my body.
"I want you to remember." My voice bellowed, as I forced Fury into the ground.
"REMEMBER YOUR PLACE. I AM THE ELDEST. I shouted, as my body burst into white and gold light, my hair turning white-gold, my pupils turning from gold into bright white. My body glowing, tinted, from the new power.
"YOU SHALL RESPECT MY POWER, THIRD. FOR I AM THE STRONGEST PALADIN. DO NOT EVER THINK OTHERWISE." I roared, and slashed down, severing all of Fury's tendrils. Before Fury could react, I went low, and launched a massive punch into his midsection. The Remnant blasted into the air like a missile, as the ground swirled from the impact, massive rocks being decimated into tiny pebbles as they flew outwards.
I wasn't done yet. It didn't occur to me, but I had said I was the strongest Paladin. Not the strongest Remnant. Decen... did he recognize my strength?
Fury regained his position, and concentrated, his flames becoming even more intense.
I am not finished. I am not done. He seethed, as he began powering up. I zipped into the air, yelling.
"THEN SHOW ME, DEACON CHOW. YOUR RESOLVE. YOU WILL COME WITH ME TO SAVE LUCIUS. WHETHER YOU WANT TO OR NOT." My voice had become louder, more ancient, stronger. Like six of me were talking at the same time.
Fury yelled as the whole sky turned orange from his glow.
KINGDOMBREAKER SERIES... He said as he brought his fist back, all the power entering his hand into a orange glow, black electricity arcing from his body and blasting the ground hundreds of feet below.
"YOU'RE COMING WITH US!" I yelled. I remembered the pact I made with Kaius. To keep Lyra safe. The promise I gave to Decen on that day I almost died to Mogul. I promised I would keep fighting no matter what. Because I was his Remnant. I would keep fighting, no matter what it took.
"I TOLD HIM."
"I PROMISED HIM."
"TO KEEP EVERYBODY SAFE. I WOULD BECOME..."
Fury shot to me, as I leapt up to greet him in a powerful clash.
We clashed in a massive explosion, which shook the entire country.
Chapter 119 (Remnant 1)
"Did you forget?"
I turned to Trista. We had just defeated an enemy army, our forces had suffered some casualties. But little or great. It was still the same. Brothers and sisters fallen in battle. The devastated families knowing they could never see their loved ones again.
"What do you mean?"
Trista walked up to me. "Your rank. You're a centurion now. But despite that, you still act like it's your first time on the battlefield."
I looked at Pariah, which was soaked in the blood of our enemies.
I closed my eyes. "Trista, I... I am in deep remorse. Even though I have slain many, every time, it still hurts."
Trista looked at me with sympathy. "Arman... out of all my many years leading the army of Argen, and even when I served as the foot soldier, or their shield maiden, I've never once encountered an honourable warrior who didn't regret his actions in the battlefield."
I looked at her, in surprise. "But Trista... wouldn't that mean weakness?"
Trista laughed. "Weakness?! Why would hanging on to your integrity be a weakness?"
Trista put her hand on my shoulder plate. "If anything, regretting to lay down the blade on an opponent's neck is the only indicator that you're still sane. We do what we do because we need to. For the better of Argen. That is why we are soldiers. But someone who kills and enjoys it? That's no soldier. That's a killer. A psychopath. I trust you aren't?"
No. Trista. I am not a killer.
I woke up, as I landed on the ground. "Hero style". As Lucius would have described it. I put Loz-Q back in its sheath as my white and gold aura dissipated, my white and gold spiky hair turning back to its original black, my two bangs returning to my forehead as I turned around.
Fury crumpled on the ground, defeated. His form gone, and his jacket in tatters.
"Deacon!" Meena and Merrow shouted as they ran up to him.
Thomas stared at me. "Holy shit dude."
Kanade walked to me. "There isn't much time. We need to stop Icarus. Lucius is waiting."
Sophia knelt down next to Deacon and began healing him. "He's taken... a lot of damage." She gasped.
Merrow got up. "Arman... I hope you still have more in the tank. Because that new power of yours... we're gonna need everything we have if we're going to stand any chance to Paladin Icarus."
I nodded, grimly. Kanade took my arm.
"Stay still." His hand glowed white as I felt my strength restoring.
"Thank you, Kanade."
Kanade was quiet. "Do not thank me just yet. I have a few words to say to you. Priest Arman."
The way he said my title... there was an undertone to it. I felt guilty.
"But." Kanade said, as he looked at me.
"We need to stop Icarus."
Fury got to his feet, and rubbed his head. "Dammit. I guess you really had more in the tank in our last fight. I'll do what you ask. But this is the only time I'm going to help Lucius."
Sophia looked like she wanted to kick Fury in the crotch, but Merrow put her hands on her shoulders.
Merrow opened a portal back to the Silver City.