Avalon, the eternal empire, a civilization that had once stretched across its own universe with relative peace. It is known to many across the world as a bastion of light and a sentinel of liberty. Truly it was a time that they lived like gods, guardians of life And now they have only a single continent to their name and a population of only sixty million people left to rebuild their tattered kingdom.
The drums of war beat against Avalon as their waring neighbors turn to them for allies or enemies. Either the Ocean kingdom's to the west or the Lunar nation to the north or even the corpse of the equally once great but now divided Sun empire to the south are a future friend or enemy.
In times like this fear and paranoia is at its highest and that was quite evident with over four hundred large battleship's guarding all parts of the border, like snarling hounds to show the other kingdoms that their strength and might was still intact.
It was another patrol over the freezing northern Prasinos sea in the dead of night when they saw it streaking across the sky. The ship's advanced detection systems were the first to pick up the objects streaking towards them at twenty times the speed of sound.
Soon the man and woman on deck could see the bright burning oval object streaking through the air thanks to their great physical attributes that trump yours and mine. They sent message's to the unknown craft ordering a withdraw from their territorial water's but they weren't obeyed or even answered.
The order to shoot it down was passed and they began to fire upon the object that moved and zipped around the hundreds upon hundreds of beams of concentrated energy from the giant artillery cannons that rested upon the deck and sides of the battleship's, but it avoided them all like a unnaturally swift bird dodging bullets fired upon it by hunters.
The object increased it's speed further with ease passing over the battleships so fast that all that could be seen as a trail of light left by it after it had flown by.
"What the hell ...?" the Admiral of this vast force could only watch the lights vanish into Avalon " Call the mainland, the parameter has be breached, i repeat the parameter has been breached...".
Prime, the capital of Avalon, located right in the center of the great continent, it is the pinnacle of Avalonian architecture.
The city was so large it would take a normal healthy human being two days of constant walking to get from one end of the city to the other of the oval-shaped city.
The city itself was a marvel of high rise buildings made from slick metal or plastered with a gold cover and glass, other structures were made completely of white marble like the Roman wonders of old, the streets were filled with fast-moving vehicles shaped like slick sports cars without wheels and hovered fifteen inches off the ground as if held up by some invisible force.
Trains that flew through the very air itself with Gryphon's and Pegasus as their companions in the sky. Across the city were dotted many water fountains and statues made completely of pure crystal while the city edges were surrounded by ten white pyramids with golden engravings and the pyramids hovered ten meters off the ground.
At the heart of the city, the royal palace stood as the grandest structure in Prime, built from marble, granite, ivory, obsidian, gold, iron, steel, glass and crystal. The mighty palace had towers that elevated hundreds of meters into the sky, it had its own lake, a small forest and finally a gold pyramid as its crowning center to be marveled by all.
Christian or Chris Ddraig was many things to many different people. A son to his parents, a brother, a vigilante to the people of earth and a prince to the people of Avalon.
The young nineteen year old walked the halls of the palace that were being illuminated by the rising morning sun, it illuminated his brunette hair. He was dressed in a white buttoned shirt, a blue jacket, black jeans and blue sneakers.
"You are strong and regal...you are strong and regal" he kept repeating over and over in his mind the mantra his grandmother taught him whenever he felt nervous in front of big crowds.
The corridor's sides were covered in all manner portraits and statues that would belong in a museum.
One portrait in particular drew his attention above all. It was rather large, about six feet tall and seven feet wide. It was held together by an old honey tree frame that was intricately decorated with small carvings all depicting important parts of the royal family's history.
The picture upon the portrait showed a man and a woman both appearing to be in their mid fifties and dressed in royal garbs with two crowns resting upon their heads.
They bore brown hair like him though of varying shades. The man had a thick bushy grey beard whilst the woman appeared to have multicolored rainbow lines running down her eyes, past her cheeks, and to her chin.
At the bottom of the portrait was written "In loving memory of King Charlemagne and Queen Iris founders and hero's of Avalon, their sacrifice shall never be forgotten".
"Good morning grandma, grandpa" he greeted them like he did every time he walked down this path in some hope that they heard him from far lands.
At the end of the hall were two ten meter tall golden gates with the engravings of an owl, a dragon and a scale held by male and female figures facing each other.
This was one of the most important places in Avalon, the throne room, center of administrative power and where he had been summoned.
Standing by the doors were ten knights all acting as guards, these were some of the greatest knights in Avalon with legends and feats that belonged amongst the hero's of the old age's. Their leader stood at seven feet in height while dressed in bronze knights armor with a purple cape with a brown castle drawn upon it symbolizing his house.
He wore a bronze coloured Greek helmet that covered most of his head except for a small portion of his face and that made him appear more intimidating. In his right hand was a solid bronze spear and in his left a five foot tall bronze shield. This was Hector Myca the defender one of the greatest knights of this age.
As a child, the stories of Hector and the Trojan party were one of the many things that inspired Chris and thousands of other children to aim for knighthood.
Hector was just as imposing in real life as in his stories, he bore the title man who's mighty spear killed mountains and here he bowed with respect to Chris as he passed as did his fellow knights.
Chris struggled to keep himself from shaking in excitement or letting them see his red blushing face from the embarrassment and joy of meeting his hero's even though he saw them every day guarding the most important people to him and the realm. It was still a magical experience to him damn it.
"Greetings, your majesty" the greetings from the knights were firm and respectful and to his shame, Chris felt his cheeks turn even redder than before if that was even possible.
"Greetings, knights...of Avalon" Chris answered struggling to keep in a giggle of joy.
"Your majesty is something wrong?" Hector like any self respecting knight noticed and inquired concerned.
"Um..um" he needed to think of something and then it hit him to just tell the truth " I am.... kind of sore from lady Scahaths training".
Lady Scahath was amongst the top hero's of Avalon and she served along with his mother and father as a Paladin. She was even an officially recognized aunt to the royal family.
But by Deus, their training sessions together was absolute torture. It was made even worse that they were mandatory due to him bothering and pestering her to train him and his team until she finally gave in and made them mandatory probably to mess with him.
At first, Chris and his friends were very pleased to train under the great Scahath and then they discovered the hell that was her so-called training. A single day never went by without several separate incidents were she nearly turned him into a pin cushion thanks to her spear and that was if he was lucky. right now he could feel his muscles begging for rest but he soldiered on knowing that he'd face a much more frightening beast if he missed this session.
He slightly shuddered at the thought of facing his angry mother " How can one person be so scary at a moment's drop".
"Of course my prince, you may pass" the skepticism in Hector's voice showed that he didn't buy it but Chris just passed the knights by until he was in the throne room.
The throne room of Avalon literally made legend's since the third age. The large pyramid at the center of the palace acted as the throne room.
The floor was a black marble stone while the top of the pyramid would open during the day like a door leaving a thin crystal roof that illuminated light upon the rest of the throne room. It had sixty wood and leather chairs bolted into the wall with thirty on the right and thirty on the left, giving them an oval formation.
At the far end of the throne room was an elevated marble platform that stood at four meters in height. Resting upon it were two thrones that were elder wood carved into thrones with their root's and branches still alive and planted into the earth. Their sovereigns were sitting upon the thrones with an air that was godlike.
Chris walked to the right side chairs that like their left side chairs weren't completely filled up yet.
The chairs only had forty men and women who all belonged to the higher rankings of the military, intelligence group's, the Magi court and political officers like ministers and parliamentarians.
Chris's father looked like an older version of him except his hair was slightly darker and it was much less spiky than his son's. He had a beard that had recently been trimmed but was still slightly thick, He wore a black suit with a red shirt on the inside and upon his head rested a golden crown with red, blue, orange, purple and green crystals lined it.
Resting by his throne was Durandal on of the divine weapons, from the scabbards size, you could tell that the sword was an arming sword. The scabbard was decorated with red and green symbols too old for him to understand.
Next his mother Natalia, master of Excalibur another one of Avalon's divine weapon's. Natalia's hair was a light shade of violet whilst her eyes were colored grey, unlike her husband and children who gained their golden eyes from their fae, human mixed blood from Chris's grandmother.
She wore a blue dress with some white vertical lines upon it and her sword Excalibur rested by her throne in all of its glory as of the ivory and gold long sword with a red scabbard that had old engravings like Durandal.
Chris sat down quietly in his throne grateful that everyone wasn't looking at him for being late...again. it wasn't his fault that Scahath's training took hours off his day.
At the center of the room stood a man in a black suit that was so wrinkled anyone could tell that it had just been pulled out of another pile of clothes and its owner clearly didn't give a damn about it's appearance.
The man's skin color was light blue with green pigmentation lines running across his body that looked like rather extravagant and intricate body art, this was the body type of all fae or fairies as human mythology called them. His hair was an unruly and tangled black mess while his eyes were like a cat's with golden colour and upon his back were rainbow coloured insect wings that were constantly flapping.
The man was Aro Kugari the Director of a silver hawk. A man to be feared and respected, Aro was the best intelligence agent in Avalon.
He was the kind of man who knew every secret about his friends and enemies, a mighty chess master and shameless puppeteer you would want to serve loyally alongside you and...a total and notorious drunk of the highest caliber who held no shame whatsoever.
"An update on the breach has just arrived" Aro snapped his fingers and around him, blue holographic images of satellite images of Avalon, the northern sea, live feeds to knights and military units scouting the area and hundreds of simulations of where they might have landed.
" The unidentified flying object has a high cloaking system that has hidden them from all of our initial scans but we have made a breakthrough".
The holographic image of the forest area in northern Avalon showed a circle over enough land that stretched for a few thousand meters.
"The Magi council have managed to give us a general area of where the UFO is. Right now with help from Paladin Sigurd, we have sent out scouting parties to search the area and our troops are being deployed for a deeper search and to put down any possible hostiles".
" A breach, Something crossed our border and that wasn't the meeting I was summoned for?" Many thoughts jumped around in Chris's mind as to why and then the thought creped in.
"Maybe it's because I am not the crown princess like Ishtar. I mean I am third in line after Jeanne and since they are part of active knight teams on the ground and I am stuck in this stupid city sitting on my butt all day".
Knights are the most powerful and elite unit of the Avalonian military. They existed to face the type of threats the normal military couldn't face without large unnecessary casualties.
The knight's core was a strange unit in terms of its recruitment practices. Three times a year it held entrance exams in theory and the practical tests. Any person from the age of sixteen and above could enter regardless of age, gender, and social status.
Chris himself was a proud knight after he passed the exam a year ago, the exam had been pure torture.
Ishtar and Jeanne had graduated with their teams far earlier than him and they were out dealing with the remaining night terrors or beasts of Darkness like many called them.
Chris and his team had dealt with a few like a headless rider with a whip made from a spine.
It was how things worked until now nearly every mission had team on it and his team were left with nothing to do but hang out at the capital and become couch potatoes and he hated it with a burning passion.
He tried signing up for combat tournaments but being the prince everyone was too afraid to hurt him...that was the type of load he would believe if he didn't know that they just didn't take him seriously after all even his youngest and weakest sister participated in the tournaments no problem at all.
Then he tried to sign up for border patrols, but then his mother said no and when Natalia Ddraig said no, it was no. And by Deus, that woman was scary even without her dark side.
"Have our Gryphon's in the sky picked up anything?" His father asked.
Chris couldn't name it but there was something that changed his father's voice whenever he was speaking asking. His voice became deeper, stronger and more authoritative.
"Nothing as of yet" though Aro who had been friends with the King and Queen since childhood wasn't clearly fazed at all by the aura of power both the King and Queen emitted " I have sent out an order on all of our best knights including your daughter's".
Chris honestly didn't know what he was thinking or was he thinking at all when he raised his right arm like a student in a classroom and it was made worse by his blue crystal ring that rested upon his right middle finger.
And the damn thing always glowed whenever he raised his hand because apparently having a stupid glowing ring is the symbol of royalty even though it glowed wither he wanted to it to glow or not.
All eyes turned him and at that moment and he felt small. Like a tiny ant having giants looking down on his small frame.
"Well I am...uh...uh...volunteering my team's services on the ground as well" he was sweaty and his voice was squeaky and breaking.
Yeah today was not starting well, he really hated crowds focusing on him so much, it made his knees lose their strength and his palms began to sweat whilst his breathing became slightly erratic.
"Are you sure about this?" his mother asked him with concern laced in her voice and it made his nerves flair up, burying away his nervous tick.
"I will be a fine mother" he tried not to let the frustration show in his voice," I think my team is qualified enough to provide help".
His parents remained silent while they looked at each other, their faces spoke a language without words but an understanding of each other built from years of friendship, comradely from their time on the same knight's team and marriage.
Finally, after four minutes of silence, the two agreed but to what he didn't know.
"We have decided" his mother sounded unhappy which was strangely a good sign " You may go".
"Good for you nephew" even when congratulating him Aro sounded as uninterested and sarcastic as possible "You can start off now and await orders from Paladin Sigurd and do get me a jug of northern moonshine on the way back".
"Aro!" Natalia's outraged scream may have put everyone else on edge except for Aro who had just pulled a lollipop from his pocket was too busy sucking away to care.
"What is it, Nat?".
"Don't you think I don't know about you using my children to act like your booze runners when i explicitly prohibited you from doing so" his mother was incensed.
Chris could admit that he did carry out illegal runs for his uncle and knew that even Ishtar did it.
"Those were training activities".
"Of course, in espionage".
"That's a load and you know it!".
"They managed to subvert your helicopter parenting didn't they".
" Why you little! ".
At this point, Chris decided to just sneak out of the throne room. He had seen this kind of conversation between either of his parents and his uncle and well they lasted for some time.
After he slipped through the door leaving the fruitless argument between the two friends whilst his father tried to act as the voice of reason. He reached for his left pocket and pulled out a crystal that turned on with the words Echo flashing.
He went to his contacts on the little communication device and put out a double call to two names that knew by heart. The calls were both answered and he heard on them both on the other end saying " Hello?".
"Suit up and meet in me in the Spectre, within five minutes we have a job".
The lands of northern Avalon could be best described as a lush savannah with the occasional thick collection of trees to hide in if the sun was truly beating down hard upon you. And across this sun kissed land, two beings were fleeing with the speed and agency seen when zebras fled lions.
The first thing one would notice about these two was that they ran like lightning, streaked across the earth easily shattering and surpassing the sound barrier.
Behind them, many more blurs persuade with equally fast speed as the two with only a few meters between them.
"Go, I shall hold them!!" the male between the two stated to his companion who tried to stop and argue but he silenced her " No, if you don't make it back all is lost!".
With a hesitant nod his companion took off leaving him awaiting the shadows that chased them. In the heaven's the skies darkened from nimbus clouds heralding a storm over the great battle and the man outstretched his hand to the heavens calling down hundreds of lightning bolts upon the earth like some deity of old.
The aircraft bay at the palace was a wide and tall structure next to the landing strip. It was filled with hundreds of flying crafts of every shape, size, and design ranging from complex city block wide combat carriers, jets, and simple single person vessels.
But he was looking for one very specific aircraft and after ten minutes of getting lost in the massive maze he found it.
The large silver ship shaped like a space ship from a grand space opera. Chris eyed his personal ship reading out its name written in bright neon green Spectre.
He placed his hand on it and he could feel a warm tickle on his palm as the ship scanned it.
"Welcome princess" the ship's female sounding AI greeted him as the ramp opened and Chris frowned.
"Damn it Mulengu really" he just sighed and walked into the ship that was built for war...and a bit of luxury like a comfy couch, a fridge with food and all the hidden compartments where he kept his hidden sweets and cards collection.
It had an armory on the left filled with extra weapons and armor. To the right where medic sets, and civilian clothing.
As he entered the lights went on illuminating his armor. The armour in question was composed of a blue breastplate with two golden metal lines running across his abdomen. He had blue coloured pouldrons and gauntlets that were colored blue with black fingers.
His thighs were protected with blue plate thigh guards that had golden lines running vertically down it. His knee-high boots were made completely from a blue plate that was only blue up to his ankles and then from there they were black. He wore black pants and a black shirt with a blue hood that had a golden line running across the edge.
The armor was amongst the best forged like many Avalonian metal it was forged from dragon scales transfmutated into a metal, making him well protected against both physical and magical threats thanks to the armor's draconic properties.
On his back hang his sword Lucius-aurora. It was a one handed long sword with a blade made out of a blue metal that slightly glowed with a golden hilt that had small engraved images of a lion on the right and a dragon on the left, his family's sigil.
The sword was something he randomly picked up from the royal armory after his last one was broken but that is a story for another day.
From what he found out about it, the blade is variation or copy of his mother's blade Excalibur. Five different variations existed and his was a light dawn variant, whatever that means.
The opening of the ramp drew him out of his musings and back to the real world, as two figures slowly walked up the ramp to meet him.
The first one was a woman, nineteen of age as well, she was slightly shorter than him, her hair was a light shade of purple that suited her. She had completely black lipstick that contrasted her light chocolate brown skin tone and she wore a slick purple and black metal body armor almost similar to his.
In her right hand was an English longbow that was coloured purple with black symbols running down its shaft.
The other one was a young mane of a similar age and height to Chris. He had black hair and slight stubble on his chin and his skin was a slightly darker shade than the girl's. His armor could be seen as red and black pallet swapped version of Chris's.
Strapped to his side was a red and black hilted arming sword. It had two red eyes shaped ruby's installed on both sides of the hilt giving it an exotic feel.
The two were Ursa Falcon and Mulengu Mulengu. They were Chris's closest friends and members of his royal guard as well as his team of knights.
The three along with their other friend Thor met on earth when Chris was stuck there a few years ago and with Ursa's money from her families tech manufacturing company they fought what turned out to be early manifestations of the darkness on that doomed world, until a giant hell portal opened, sucked in the planet and only five billion people were saved by cosmic solar system sized dragons... until an Avalonian aid ship arrived and took two million refugees to Avalon while the rest were taken by the dragons to some refugee Multiverse out there far from their own...it was as stupid and acid trip worthy as it sounds.
"I told you that we'd be late" the angry Ursa stomped her foot onto the ground while glaring holes in Mulengu's head as he looked at her with his cheeks puffed up trying to let out the same type of laugh Chris was holding in " what's so bloody funny you daft boy".
"I am sorry..it's just your accent" Mulengu struggled to hold it in " it makes you sound like an angry leprechaun".
"Really" she wasn't at all amused and Chris tried to look away but the sound of Mulengu's snorts of near withheld laughter made him join too as he imagined angry Ursa dressed up like a leprechaun cursing at everything she came across.
" We have known each other for three years and you guys still find the accent funny...what's wrong with my Irish accent".
"Oh nothing" Chris was now tearing up as it felt like the repressed laughter was tickling him.
"So says the man who's parents and family sound like they walked out of a Shakespearean play while he sounds like an American trying and failing to sound Shakespearean".
"That's not true" he didn't sound like that did he "Right?".
"Well.." Mulengu made a few awkward hand waves " when we first met I thought you were American or American like with a British accent thrown in, just being honest I mean your accent isn't thick at all but....".
"Oh, really Mr i am from southern Africa yet I don't sound like it" Chris snapped at Mulengu.
"Okay, for the last time, i come from Zambia, one of the best African English speaking countries in Africa. We don't have accents, heck even our native languages have low accents" Mulengu defended himself.
A long silence passed them by before Ursa spoke: " we all sound funny don't we" while Mulengu answered, " oh yeah" and Chris nodded in agreement.
"Hey no offense intended over the whole voice thing" Mulengu apologized to her.
"It's nothing" Ursa smiled and playfully punched his left shoulder "besides we all sound stupid, you included".
Mulengu sighed just deciding to give her win as Chris suspected he would "Fair enough".
The ramp closed and Ursa walked to the pilots seat and began to start the ship's antigravity setting that made it hover as it flew out onto the landing and take off.
Ursa was a master with technology amongst them all, she created a exo suite back on earth at fourteen and it could do crazy things but her crowning achievement in Chris's eyes was her self taught mastering of the specter, even though the thing made jets look like toy cars in terms of complexity. Though she nearly destroyed the thing when she tried to take it apart to study it.
"So what's the job?" Ursa asked as she raised the aircraft into the air and took off leaving a sonic boom as the ship entered supersonic speeds as it's cruising speed.
Flying manually at these speeds should have been impossible for an ordinary human being, and that was true for a year ago she had been a normal human being similar to all the refugees from the dead planet formally known as Earth but then she was gifted the old magic by his parents like his grandparents had done to the natural inhabitants of Avalon.
"Is it a magic castle run by the magical construct of Dracula, the Mummy, and Frankenstein".
"Or is it a Dullahan going around trying to behead everyone" Mulengu added rubbing his neck as they all shuddered from that particular unpleasant memory.
"I wish but, it's worse" Chris had remembered all those cases and truly they were strange and disturbing at times.
He taped the metal table in the center and a holographic image of all the files, images and videos of the breach went up from it's connection with the silver hawk server's.
" About five hours ago the western border was breached by an extremely fast UFO...and no before you ask they aren't alien crafts" the excitement in both of his friends died.
"Stop ruining fan Ddraig!" Mulengu shouted as Ursa booed him while giving him a thumbs down gesture.
"I am not....you know, whatever, they are cloaked and near impossible to pinpoint but our Magi's have managed set up a general area that there in".
"So we don't know where they are directly but we know the general area," Ursa asked trying to see if she understood "that's a decent start if not anything".
"Yes," Chris answered confirming her assumption.
"So what's the plan?" Mulengu asked him "I mean having a general area is fine but that... that is a lot of lands to cover and whoever it is could have slipped us by".
"We are going to land at the setup base and then we shall join units acting as a full net sweep from all directions so that we box them in" Chris answered and now that he was finished " Oh yeah and why are you guys late anyway?".
Ursa cringed while giving the prince and Mulengu a stink eye " Someone... decided that he wanted to make a chimera surprise".
The chimera surprise was a drink Chris taught Mulengu to make when they got to Avalon. It was a smoothie made up of random ingredients put together to create a mixed cocktail and the boys loved it and Ursa found it disgusting.
"Came on Ursa, this was just a medium recipe it wasn't that bad" Mulengu tried to defend his choice of beverage.
Ursa scowled and her nose's slight twitching indicating that she could still smell the chimera surprise.
"Your damn medium recipe was a blended abomination of squid tentacles, an onion, chili peppers, an apple, milk, and orange, cabbages, shrimp, mayonnaise, chicken and finally mushrooms. There was nothing medium about that garbage".
"Hey, you take that back. There is nothing wrong with appreciating a good meal from another land, or do you have a problem with Avalonian culture Ursa?".
"Stop your goal post shifting Mulengu".
"Okay, Ursa I get its bad to you but you have never tried it and Mulengu dude come on stop fighting her on this" Chris decided to step in "So this is how dad feels".
Though Chris personally loved chimera surprise, it was a meal all children in Avalon had as far back as their infancy. His mother would always make some for his siblings and him every morning when they were younger.
"And murder my test buds" Ursa sounded outraged at the notion of even touching the stuff " Besides it's both your faults for making every morning smell like was getting everything from the fish and spice market rubbed in my face".
"Fine whatever" Mulengu dropped the argument in order to avoid Ursa tearing him to pieces.
Chris wore his smile brightly as he felt relived that today might just turn out great.
"This thing is gonna be big right?" Mulengu asked as he took a seat.
"Yes of course" Chris wasn't sure where this question was leading off to.
"Well, then whose leading it?".
" Imparetor Paladin Sigurd Nibelungenlied ".
" Who?" It was Ursa who asked equally as confused as Mulengu "I mean, i know that Imparetor and Paladin are knighthoods highest ranks but Sigurd Nibelungenlied is not a name that i am familiar with".
" I will give you guys a pass since you're new here" he began racking his mind for the best information on the man " Sigurd Nibelungenlied, his kind of my uncle...old childhood friend of my dad and all that, anyway he fought in the old dragon invasion of 55 of the fourth age... no these aren't like dragon's that saved us when earth went boom, they are more small scale and distractive. Also he killed their king Fafnir and eat his heart before bathing in his blood ".
Mulengu and Ursa's face's showed general disgust at his last words and Ursa asked " Why would he do that?".
"I don't know, i haven't thought about asking him the disgusting details but i know that it made him invulnerable".
" Chris you're family members are strange " Mulengu stated the obvious.
"I know dude, i know".
They arrived to the north and they could see large tents, armored vehicles and large flying crafts were used as makeshift command center's that numbered in the hundreds. From above it looked like a busy swarm of ants around a nest going in and out without missing a beat in their routine.
"Put us down Ursa" Chris ordered her as his eyes fixed on the main command center that he had contacted on the way here.
The Specter descended quietly onto the ground creating only a slight thud sound from an over hundred ton metal aircraft landing upon the bare earth.
The ramp opened and the three exited the craft and walked through the sea of knights and soldiers whose eyes, pointing and whispering Chris could feel.
"Hey, you okay?" Mulengu asked him as slang his left arm around his friend's shoulder to calm him down and not let Chris fear be shown to the thousands who had just turned him into a sight piece.
"Ye...ye...yeah, why" Chris cursed his fear of crowds as he was now walking funny like he had the sudden need to pee.
"Oh, nothing, nothing" Mulengu pulled a cloth from his pocket and wiped Chris's face despite his protests "Just this, calm down".
The cloth was now drenched in enough sweat that it looked like it had been submerged into a body of water.
"It's nothing" he couldn't stand the shame and so he began walking faster towards the tent in order to escape the eyes and pointing fingers.
He sprinted towards the command center as fast as he could without making it obvious that he was running from them. They managed to reach the tent that was acting as the main command center.
It was a large tent capable of covering twenty houses, the guards at the door question him before entry and they introduced themselves as Aeris Knights, Knights of the common order.
The room was filled with technicians and high ranking officials walking around, talking as they focused on hundreds of holographic screens that showed images from space, live images from teams on the ground, live conversions with Magi's who were still trying to cast pinpointing spells. The air was thick.
Chris sucked in his breath before he walked through all the noise to the center of the tent were a knight in black armor stood.
The man had black shoulder length hair and a slightly thick beard. His eyes were red slits like a lizard of some sort and in his hand was a long sword with a hilt shaped like a dragon with its wings extended as a cross guard.
"Imparetor Paladin Nibelungenlied" Chris greeted another one of his uncles with his fist resting on his chest.
"Nephew, you have arrived" his uncle drew him into a strong hug and Chris could feel the scales on his uncle's skin that was hidden from the eye.
The act of bathing in Fafnir's blood and eating his heart caused Sigurd to gain draconic features.
"Un... uncle... i need air" he gasped out his words from Sigurd's bone crushing hugs. The older man finally let go, leaving Chris gasping for air.
"Ah, these must be your friends" he turned to the two and pulled them both into the hug that should have counted as torture " It is most wonderful to meet you. As Christian's friends you are now family and I will accept no other title but uncle just to be clear".
"Y...yes... Impa... uncle, uncle" they called again when he hugged them tighter at the mistake of nearly referring to him as Imparetor.
"Uncle we have come for our orders" Chris had finished refilling his lungs with sweet oxygen while Mulengu and Ursa were still gasping for it.
"Good, very good" Sigurd supported Chris's option to go on missions and was the one who gave him jobs, until a particularly nasty visit from his friend Natalia that leveled enough a mountain for him to get the message.
"Our fifth unit is about to be deployed to the Weeping mountains right now, I suggest that you go join that contingent".
"Who is our commanding officer" Chris wanted to know who he would answer to.
"This gentleman" his uncle snapped his fingers and the holographic image of a young man dressed in golden ancient Indian war armor while in his hand he had a golden bow. The man's hair was spiky plus red and orange making it look like a fire " Karna is his name and he is one of the best officers I have".
"Of course uncle, thank you" Chris and his friends bowed respectfully before leaving the commander and the tent in search of the ship.
"We are going on a mission with under the leadership of Karna the invincible" the excitement in Chris's eyes was as evident as a shower of shooting stars.
"Who?" honestly Ursa never knew much about the knights of Avalon who she had compared to Hollywood celebrities or sports stars much to Chris's annoyance.
Chris turned and gave her a look that said 'really?'.
Ursa just answered with " look I am not the one who collects their trading cards".
"The cards...are... important because... because... strategic... strategic... under..."
"You don't have an excuse do you?" Ursa asked him after the failed defense of his six hundred trading cards.
Every single Avalonian knight from the greatest to the most unknown had trading cards with their pictures, weapons, feats and biography trading cards also served as a sort of ranking system for knights in terms of combat prowess and achievements.
Chris had been collecting them like a mad man since his return after finding his original stash from five years ago missing. He long suspected that one of his sisters must have sold them.
"Speaking of which why don't we have trading cards?" Mulengu asked them.
"Please don't tell you have joined the league of hoarding too?" Ursa groined at the possibility of having to not only deal with Chris the dragon hoarder but Mulengu as well.
"No.. I mean I have been searching for our trading cards and we don't have them, heck even Chris the prince doesn't have one".
"I know" Chris answered as he felt a familiar headache forming from the reason why " My mom is paranoid that having such things will make my stalkers crazier. I understand her concerns after being groped in public more than once and a list of other things i'd would rather forget. It's just that her reasoning was so weak and her actions were a little too extreme.
"That doesn't make any sense," Mulengu said agreeing with him.
"Yeah, I know right, the only person doing the stalking is the guy with over six hundred cards of people" Ursa had the grin to eat all grins while Chris's face became red and he shouted....
"I am not a stalker!".
"Found it" Mulengu called pointing at the larger craft left of them that was being entered by knights.
The three walked towards the craft that was larger than the Specter. They joined the procession of knights who entered the ship before the ramp closed.
Inside the ship, the three took seats on the sides to avoid being seen... the amount of good that did was a duck. Everyone looked at them and the whispers made Chris feel even more awkward.
" Hello, Christian" the voice of a girl called to him.
Chris looked up to a girl with short red hair placed in a female Mohawk punk style, her ears were long and pointy while she had two black short horns on her head similar to a rams and like many elves, her skin was light brown, she had red markings running downwards from her cheeks to her face and milky white eyes.
She was dressed in a tight dark grey sleeveless spandex. On top, she wore a red and silver breastplate. Her boots were also made of a red metal while she wore red gauntlets and across her back was strapped a spear covered in black leather coverings and a red bladed end.
"Pyrrha Troy" his voice was strained from anger and an obvious disdain thickly it should have manifested into true venom.
To anyone who knew the two of them, Chris and Pyrrha shared...a strained relationship on the best of days and on the worst Chris cursed her with death.
The two were technically cousins through Scahath who was Pyrrha's mother and who the rest of the Ddriag family treated like an official aunt.
The two never had a great relationship after his mother's darkness went rogue and let's just say Chris found himself the defenseless target of her bullying. He grew to hate Pyrrha with a burning passion even after five years.
"Christian it's nice to see you again" Pyrrha sounded awkward trying to speak to him while Chris's face was so angry that Ebenezer Scrooge would have told him to tone it down a little.
"What do want?" his voice had a slight growl to it.
"I just wanted to say hello. I haven't gotten to visit since well...".
"Since the locker" Chris answered bluntly with the incident that still haunted him etched into his mind.
Pyrrha hanged her head in shame though Chris didn't notice and if he had he just wouldn't care "Chris... it's been five years and i... just want us to start afresh".
"Alright then, how about you stand over there and pretend that I don't exist while I stand here and do the exact same thing".
" Alright then, it was nice seeing you" Pyrrha slowly walked away leaving Chris with a snort and a high held face.
"Can you believe her" he turned Mulengu and Ursa who had questioned looks " What?".
Ursa just shook her head while Mulengu whispered "What was going on between you two. Is she your ex or something?".
Chris was about to answer when the speaker system in the craft flared up " Prepare for a crash landing, I repeat to prepare for a crash landing. We have taken a hit and we are about to fall into the heavy fire!!".
Everyone strapped themselves into their seats as they felt the craft swing around in the air over and over again until a earthquake like thud from the presumed landing traveled through the ship.
"Thank God that's over" Mulengu whispered after he swallowed back the remaining chimera surprise that nearly escaped his stomach and surprised whoever was unlucky enough for it to land upon.
Then right side of the ship exploded inwards sending pieces of shrapnel hypersonic velocity while leaving a large hole in the ship capable of fitting a full grown elephant through.
Then dozens of energy beams shot into the craft just as fast as the shrapnel and they cut through anything either knight or ship.
Chris ripped off his seat belt like all the others around him and dove left to avoid being shredded.
From the panicked screams, carnage and bodies of the injured or those trapped in the wreckage Chris caught Karna ran to the hole, a wall of fire formed around his body burning all the projectiles on impact.
He stood in the possession and drew his bowstring. From his bowstring, an arrow of golden energy formed. All Avalonian bows were built with enough magical energy to form energy arrows when the string was pulled. But now the arrow was glowing violently from an overload of energy drawn from Karna himself.
He let loose the arrow and it took off streaking from the craft towards the origin of the projectiles, a mountain three hundred kilometers away.
The arrow crossed the distance in a few seconds before it struck the mountain, the resulting explosion tore the large earth formation on an atomic level until all that was left was a wide crater where it once stood.
"Move out!" Karna ordered as he led the charge out of the craft with the other knights in tow.
Chris rose to his knees avoiding the getting trampled upon by the troops. He pulled Lucius-aurora from his back before he joined the charge, He exited craft and found himself on a battlefield.
Before them a group of rouge knights clad in a uniform red armor with no markings identifying themselves.
"Do we have any clue on who they are?" Chris had neared the top and he asked Karna who was powering up another arrow.
The archer turned to him was clearly taken aback recognizing him before regaining his wits" Nothing, they must be a mercenary group or foreign black op's".
Soon an explosion hit the ground sending forth a shock wave that could tear down entire walls at the knights, some were flung back while others were buried under a ton of rock and dirt.
"Hey, get up!!" dazed Chris felt two hands grab and help him to his feet. He looked slowly and weakly at the distorted face of his rescuer, Her hair was red and her face covered in dirt but still beautiful...
"Yeah, bet you weren't expecting me" she began to help him regain standing strength before he felt her forcefully shove him to the left while she rolled back avoiding the swipe of a sword twice the size of a man, it was in the hands of a giant knight.
As soon as Pyrrha arose she unhooked her spear and with the nimbleness and skills befitting the daughter of Scahath she blocked every blow from the giant with skill and ease even though each blow came at eight times the speed of sound and the air pressure they created tore the ground apart like a bomb.
The two combatants vanished into the chaos of battle while Chris remained there as his wits returned to him.
"Well aren't you all defenseless" a female voice whispered behind his ear. He turned around and found a young fae woman her hair put in pigtails while she was dressed in all red metal armor with a katana in hand and unlike the others, her face was exposed for all to see.
"W..who are you?!" he scrambled to his feet.
Chris would have called her cute if she didn't look like a crazy person when giggling "My name is Juno or you can call, your killer little boy".
"What!?" Thankfully Chris acted on split second instincts and used Lucius-aurora to block her katana.
The impact of both weapons colliding with each other created a shock wave so powerful it tore apart the very ground that they were standing upon and nearly caused them to lose balance.
"You have fight in you, good" the woman Juno increased her sword strikes to to be just as fast as meteorite but Chris parried them with all of his quick reflexes.
Chris might not have been combat prodigy but he had five years experience fighting monsters on earth and some of the best training from Scahath. He wasn't defenseless nor was he a novice.
He kept parrying all of Juno's hypersonic slashes while he danced around her looking for an opening to strike to land a killing strike.
"Run more and more you worm!!" her words were spitefully filled with laughter, she was clearly enjoying this and it made him uncomfortable.
He pulled back and with a twist of his free hand, a ice dagger materialized and he threw it at her forcing Juno to disengage and dodge the shard.
"Nice elemental magic handsome" Juno teased while she attacked again.
"Lady, you ain't seen nothing yet" he slammed Lucius-aurora into the earth and out sprouted spikes made from ice that would have impelled Juno but she swung her blade creating a shockwave that tore the ice spikes to tiny tiny fragments.
He moved back creating a wall of solid ice that took Juno's sword instead of him. He kept dodging, weaving and dancing around the sword that meant to shred open his flesh and deliver him to deaths embrace.
Chris began to force a large quantity of magical energy into his sword and swung it into collision with Juno's unleashing a burst of blue energy upon impact.
The heat from the energy cooked the earth beneath him until it was a molten liquid before the energy and it's pressure wave leveled the earth leaving a crater deep and wide enough to fill an elephants with. Juno slid back from the attack with nothing but slight bruising on her fingers.
"Yo..u...you!" she roared in outrage from her 'wound' but Chris did not let up. He attacked her with all of his strength behind his swing's even though this use of his magic was starting to lessen his strength.
Each time Juno used her katana to parry Lucius-aurora she was pushed back by ten meters while Chris kept coming at hypersonic speed's never losing his momentum. The two didn't even notice that they were being moved from the rest of the main battle.
"If I keep up with the pressure she shall crack" Chris thought as he added more force to his swing "I just have to outlast her ".
"You beast!" Juno's face morphed into a murderous snarl " I shall skin you're soul!".
"What..." Chris never knew what happened until he felt a great pain in his leg, looking down he could see a white boney spike that had exited a hole in the fabric of reality itself had penetrated his left thigh from the front, punching through his armor as if it didn't exist.
"My spikes are made of dragon bone, very few armor's can stand before that" Juno's face was both murderous and amused "I shall have them rip the flesh from your very bone".
Two giant rips in reality opened up one her right and another her left. From them, fifty spikes flew out and Chris readied himself.
He managed to deflect half of them under ten second but the others found homes in his shoulders, legs and a few caught his abdomen and chest forcing him to his knees as his body leaked blood like a fountain of crimson and he screamed as the pain was finally registered in his brain after the initial shock.
"Oh, little baby does that hurt" she mock played concern.
"Damn you.." Chris tried to rip out one of the spikes but the pain was too much and he failed " you know... you know that was just... damn".
"I am so happy that you still have a sense of humor" from one of the rips she pulled a bone that was shaped like a crude knife " I shall enjoy curving you up".
"Then make sure to get my good side" Chris was hoping that the wisecrack would end his bone shaking fear but it did not such thing. He hated it, the fear that came with it, it shook him like a reed in a storm.
Juno began laughing like a madwoman while she raised the spike and Chris could only close his eyes as he awaited his fate. Until he felt the earth give away, the heat and a powerful blunt force knock him back.
He opened his eyes and found himself covered in dust far from a deep crater with Juno in it coated with surges of electricity.
"What the hell?" He asked.
"Hey, you okay" a familiar voice called to him. Chris looked to his right and there was a man slightly older than him with red flowing locks of hair and a slight red stubble growing on his face. He wore a bunch of tattered civilian clothing and in his hands was a large double sided bronze hummer with a head the size of a car engine and a handle almost as tall as him.
"Thor, what the hell.." Chris could always recognize his friend.
"Bastard's!!!" Juno rushed out of the crater.
"Damn it!" Chris thought before he shot forward ripping apart his damaged flesh as his sword was swung wildly. He didn't know what he hit but he knew he hit something from the sound of splitting flesh, spilling blood and most importantly Juno's scream of agony that mirrored the one he had from her spikes.
She screamed as she fell backward into the crater leave Chris's broken body to crash while Thor rushed to his side. From the crater, a green flash flared before vanishing with the screaming woman who seemed to scream more from anger than actual pain.
"Thor...Thor..." Chris called out to his friend.
"Hey, you will be okay" Thor carefully placed Chris on his back.
Chris looked behind Thor a fae girl holding a golden egg emerged from clear hiding. His eyes went on the egg that was pulsing with the magical energy of such a powerful degree it matched his parents.
"Thor, what is going on?" Chris asked him with a thousand questions flying through his mind..........
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