an: I was on a trip and I do not bring my laptop with me so I couldn’t do the finishing editing, so I delayed it – I write on my phone. But this story will enter the ‘turning point’ because otherwise, it will not go anywhere. Also, Voice?
Voice: Yes, Azhure!?
an: Don’t be annoying, this chapter is not the time for your remarks.
Voice: What…!? Pfft… fine…!
an: p.s. This is the first time uploading on Saturday morning, in my place. I still have more stuff to fit in here.
Voice: Hey, Azhure!
Voice: Why do you still use ‘an’ and not your alias!?
an: I did it in the beginning and I don’t feel like changing. I don’t want to change all the ‘an’ to ‘Azhure’.
Voice: Well, you can start now!
Azhure: Eh, sure.
Voice: That’s better!
Half a day after the Yellow Deity’s army begins their final battle against the Green Deity.
“They lost.” Rose deadpanned. “Even though everything we have prepared had gone all accordingly.”
The Court Wizards transferred to Geron Yor to see the result. There, they saw absolute carnage as mangled bodies of the natives of this world littered all around the rocky territory, painting it red on top of the green the Spawn left behind.
Around the front gate of the fortress, there was one dark-skinned tall man who was without upper armor not clothing so his muscles could be seen, except it was dissolved completely that his half-melted digestive system is exposed. Right arm disconnected with the rest of the body holding a great sword broken in half. Arrows and spears stuck all over his body that it made him a porcupine. His face was skull white, literally – the acid left behind by the Spawn had melted it until there are only bones.
Alicia had to look away, almost puking. She has seen brutalities on the screen (especially since she got trained for it), but this, and also seeing it in real life, is perhaps the most violent of them all. And they are not in danger of being found out so their emotions are not suppressed.
Even the others aren’t resisted to watch such atrocities. Owen had looked away, and Rin looks really disturbed. Only Rose was facing in front of the carnage, though her crimson pupils are pointing elsewhere.
An echo reverberated throughout the stained rocky hills. It came from the fortress. It was so loud that Alicia and Rin had to cover their ears – it could… can definitely mask any other sound.
There was an imposing figure standing on the wall of the fortress where the gate is below. Thrice the size of a human, and two branches stuck out of his head. Its skin color could not be known as its body instead radiated a sickly dark green light so dark that one could mistake it to be black if such person was not looking properly. By its right hand, a huge greatsword emanating a devilish aura of the same color as forestry. By its left hand, the head of a boy with black hair and a horrified expression on his face, lifted high for all to see – though the Court Wizards could not see it.
By the way, it was facing in the direction towards the fortress, where an army of Spawns along their generals are below, in a formation, cheering – a part of the wall was destroyed, so they could be seen, along with more dead bodies. Its bare buttocks were all to be seen by the intruders, though the Court Wizards were more distracted by the aftermath it was witnessing if it had a pair of eyes for each cheek.
“Once again the feeble Yellow Deity has sent this puny army and this so-called champion to defeat me.”
“They may have pushed us until this last beacon, but that is because I allowed it!”
This guy is definitely trying to make himself look cool!
“And now! They have marched into my domain thinking they could slay me only to despair as they meet their end!
“They may have resorted to petty tactics, but they could never hope to stand a chance against me, the Green Deity!”
Yes, the green figure who was giving a speech to the Spawns is their master, the Green Deity.
“And this puny boy who calls himself a champion!” Shaking the head of one Rei Furuta, the champion. “Was no match for me! Felled by a single stroke of my blade, here in my yard!”
“That guy’s right,” Hanz said, looking down on the scope of his rifle. “Found the rest of his body, a single slash on his neck, the rest of his body’s just roughed up from earlier fighting. His ‘holy sword’ couldn’t stand up to the Green Deity’s blade.” Sighing, loading his rifle. “It’s another bust despite all of our preparations the champion still couldn’t beat him,” he continued with an annoyed tone.
“True,” Rose interjected. “We will have to hope for the next champion to finish it.”
“Eeh!?” A scream came from Rin, the emotion suppression is still not activated meaning the Spawns did not hear her scream. “What do you mean by that? Are we just leaving!?” She then turned to Hanz and Crea. “And also, when did you get here?” she continued.
That is true, when did they transfer? And they are not wearing the robe.
“We transferred a minute ago,” the soldier explained, “in the middle of that deity’s speech. His loud voice probably masked the sound.”
“Then why are you here?”
“Because that brat is here.”
“Oh my, the Wanderer, not this again…” Rose sighed. “And you both are not wearing it again…”
She’s upset about that!?
Well Voice, you would be disappointed if the uniform you carefully designed was never worn in the end.
“The robe’s too baggy.” Hanz marched to the cliff, shrugging the other Court Wizards aside. “Excuse us,” Crea stated and followed suit and then…
…They launched themselves to the air. Crea ordered [Shield] around them mid-air. The echoes of the Green Deity’s nonstop speech had rendered the sound of it (and any other sound of combat that will come later) almost unhearable, so the Green Deity and the Spawns wouldn’t hear it.
“Rose, who is this Wanderer that Hanz was agitated?” Alicia asked. Rin also wonders with a “yeah.”
“You will see very soon…” The vampire said grimly.
“Alicia, Rin,” Owen called. “Stay back, it’ll be dangerous.”
Despite being close to proximity to the fortress and wherever the other two Court Wizards are [Eject]ing to, they are relatively fine as evidenced by their not lacking expression.
“The Wanderer is over there.” Rose pointed as she looked into her binoculars. Crea had left behind four of them for use.
Alicia moved the gaze of her binoculars to that general direction and seen it.
The Wanderer was a lone figure clad in a white cape with splotches of dark red and covering top to bottom, it looked like it was not cleaned for years (or never to begin with). By his hands, a small crescent, with pure light in the middle, and two long elongated blades attached to each end of the crescent, making a beautiful shining white bow.
From the way Alicia sees it, this Wanderer suddenly shimmered itself, appearing out of thin air a mere moments ago at a nearby opening. Then, the Wanderer assessed its situation and started to pull its strings to release a long-white arrow, that manifested the moment the bow was pulled, aiming straight for the Green Deity. But he was interrupted by Hanz’s shout.
“Wanderer!” Hanz howled (though it was barely heard as it pales in comparison to the Green Deity’s large voice) as he fired his rifle which missed. Then, he switched his sniper rifle in favor of an SMG similar to a P90, which was glowing with all sorts of colors. It was familiar to when Voice went berserk after the emotion suppression failed to press down her master’s fear. This Wanderer must have ground his gears far too much.
Floating beside his left and right, two more similar sub-machine guns materialized in a red halo moving seemingly autonomously, following Hanz.
And Hanz opened fire, while still flying (falling in style) in midair. The floating machine guns did the same.
However, the gunfire did not stop the Wanderer from letting loose of the arrow, which split into five shorter arrows when it passed the light on the crescent and each shorter arrow split into even shorter arrows as it flew with a trajectory of its own – as if it could turn to an unrealistic direction to reach its target.
Besides, Hanz was aiming for the arrows.
Even though there were too many arrows to shoot down, Hanz’s SMG had gained a higher fire rate and firepower due to no suppression of his emotions, not to mention that there were three of them. Soon, Hanz managed to shoot down every last arrow and redirected his fire to the Wanderer.
The Wanderer sidestepped avoiding the colorful bullets of fire maneg coming at it. The Wanderer then quickly pulled his bow and released the arrows to Hanz.
But Hanz was unperturbed as Crea’s [Shield] around him was impenetrable to such divine looking arrows.
PHSA PHSA PHSA
The arrows simply disintegrated into white motes of light and faded.
As soon as he touched the ground, Hanz switched his SMG into an assault rifle with a bayonet, the rifle was an AK47. Similarly, two more assault rifles appeared by his sides, hovering midair. He also said something the Crea.
As Crea landed too, she nodded to Hanz and began to do something. Soon, the [Shield] around Hanz was removed, but a bigger done of loyal lightning maneg was formed to entrap both Hanz and the Wanderer – Hanz intended to duel the Wanderer. The [Shield] was transparent enough for Alicia to see inside.
Fixing the bayonet, Hanz charged while firing his rifle. The Wanderer puts his bow inside of his cape and pulled out a sword with a beautiful golden hilt. The Wanderer charged straight into Hanz’s hailstorm of bullets and actually deflected every last one of them!
“Whoa… So cool!” Rin squealed, forgetting the situation there. “Did you see that? That sword looks cool too! It’s like a holy sword!”
Yeah! Very awesome!
Then they clashed. It was very brief as it was merely the Wanderer swinging his ‘holy sword,’ as Rin called it, upward and broke Hanz’s bayonet. However, the two autonomous assault rifles moved to aim at the Wanderer’s left flank and front, forcing the Wanderer to backstep by shooting.
Not wasting any time, the soldier switched his broken rifle for a handgun similar to a Glock 19. Then he materialized a combat knife. Switching the hands of his gun and knife, he charged forward. His adversary followed.
Next is the most intense fighting Alicia has ever seen. Each combatant skillfully handled their weapons, clashing and parrying strikes whilst moving around the whole arena like flies – Hanz with [Eject] and the Wanderer with something similar. The former shoots his gun at every given chance and the latter deflecting it. The Wanderer had more leg work as the still two floating sub-machine guns flown around the arena shooting his blind spots at every given moment, causing him to either dodge or deflect the bullets while Hanz kept the pressure on him.
Throughout the fight, Hanz was shouting something to the Wanderer.
It looked like it could drag on forever until…
“…!” Alicia gasped.
For Hanz was stabbed in the gut by the ‘holy sword’ and the Wanderer was met with a bullet to its head in retaliation.
But then, the extraordinary happened.
Think the whole fight was a recording and that recording it played backward, that is what describes the phenomenon. To be more specific, the air shimmers around not just Hanz and the Wanderer but extending to the [Shield] and Crea as well, and time was reversed in that area. Every swing, clashes, and shots were undone. The opening duel of sword deflecting charging bullets no longer happened. And finally, the formation of the [Shield] around them.
Hanz clicked his tongue as he and Crea made a soft landing to the ground, the reversal of time stopped around when both were about to land. “Alright, round two!” he exclaimed, pumping a shotgun – the Cherished Armament he used this time was the first practical pump-action shotgun made in ‘Earth,’ the Spencer Model 1882.
“WHO GOES THERE!?”
However, the Green Deity had just finished his speech and turned around to spot the little intruders outside the fortress.
“AH… SOUL WEAVERS, SO IT WAS YOUR LOT WHO-“
“Don’t. Call us that!” Hanz growled, his shoulder resting a fired Bazooka which blew off the Green Deity’s face. Crea also looked pissed. Well, every Court Wizards in Geron Yor are, except Rin who is slightly annoyed.
‘Soul Weaver’ is the old name of those who use maneg, long before the formation of the Otherworldly Court. There were many other names but around seven hundred years ago, the term was used and became popular, so it became stuck. Anyway, that name has been sullied greatly that the first Guardians renounce the name completely in favor of the name today. Also, Court Wizards are told to blast anyone uttering that name with whatever, hence the soldier blasting the Green Deity with a rocket launcher – the Maneg Soul also helped giving its vessel the mood to do so.
The Green Deity quickly regenerated his blown look and shouted, “INSOLENT SWINE! MY CREATION, KILL THEM!”
“Everybody,” Rose announced. “We are leaving this place. We do not need to fight the Green Deity.”
“DO NOT THINK I DID NOT SEE YOU!”
“Ah, they are returning,” Rose said to the other Court Wizards who transferred out of Geron Yor first. Hanz and Crea had volunteered to hold off the Green Deity and his Spawns while the others escape. Rin objected but was convinced to go soon after, a Court Wizard who could emulate a nuclear bomb and another who could project a near-impenetrable barrier can certainly handle themselves. There is also that Wanderer who seemed to want a piece of the green giant.
“Damn brat…” Hanz cursed.
Hanz and Crea transferred to Manegia about an hour and ten minutes after the first transfer request. Experience meant that they were relatively unscathed, they had few scratches on their clothing and a small scar on Hanz’s cheek which had already clotted.
“Ah, welcome back you two,” Rose said, sitting in her wheelchair. “We will hear the report in the fire chamber.”
“I see the both of you have returned after your ‘Wanderer Sense’ tickled,” Aqua mused. “How did it fare?”
“That brat kept firing at the Green Deity and Spawns and I kept firing at him until the leaves after the sixth time.” Hanz deadpanned.
“A proper report please.”
“Uhn…” Rin and Alicia had a confused expression.
The Fire Guardian looked towards Alicia and Rin. “I believe we need to explain what a Wanderer we have been talking about is, correct?”
“Alright, a Wanderer is this…”
‘Wanderer’ by the barest of definition, is a title given to individuals who obtained the ability to freely move between worlds with little to no restriction.
“Then what about us?” Alicia inquired.
“We used to be, but after the Eleven-Century War, we are now called ‘World Travellers’ or just ‘Travellers’ as we now need the Transporter Room to do it. Those who are forcefully summoned from their original worlds are called ‘Outsiders’ – the Green Deity is classified as this. While people who died and reincarnated to their sister world with their precious lives’ memories intact are named ‘Incarnates.’ The Wanderer before can teleport himself out of Geron Yor anytime he wants, though it seems he can’t teleport within the same world, however.”
In order to survive in any world they wander into, Wanderers are typically very strong. To do that, they follow their own rules, meaning they have their own Fantasy Law within themselves and some could ignore a world’s Fantasy Laws completely; this includes the Maneg System.
“As such, the Wanderers are very rare and the number of them that we know of can be counted by finger.” Aqua sticks out a few of her fingers, it looks like records of them are still intact. “We also give them code names based on their ability or what they usually do. The Wanderer in Geron Yor, who is also the newest, is titled ‘Timeless Hero’.”
‘Timeless’ because this Wanderer has the ability to rewind time in the area around him (which he can control the distance) until up to his choosing, usually triggered by death – there was one time during a time reversal, it also reversed a transfer which forced the Court Wizard back to Manegia. It also caused him to stop aging; adding the ability to ‘undo’ his death, he is essentially immortal. Furthermore, he jumped between worlds in different points of time, i.e. a time period that doesn’t correspond with the Otherworldly Court’s time period observed. This also meant that he may have been a Wanderer for more than five years. Thanks to him, time was severely screwed. There was even a saying about him: ‘How many years does the Timeless Hero Wanderer had wandered? A week? A month? A year? Ten years? A hundred? Thousands? Not even he knows it.’
The ‘Hero’ part? Well… that’s a touchy subject.
“Why?” Rin asked.
“According to Hanz, he…” Aqua cleared her throat, “is extreme.”
That answer only gave confusion to both listeners.
But Hanz gave them the answer, “Timeless Hero is just some whiny Outsider we met five years ago who messed up his job saving the world from some demon lord and made a pact with the Wanderer-Maker to be a Wanderer to ‘save’ worlds as a part of his ‘redemption’.”
“Then he is a good guy,” Rin said, “right?”
“The problem is the way he does it,” Aqua answered. “He is willing to do anything to make sure any threat to a world he goes into is eliminated, and I mean anything.”
“I saw him destroyed a village,” Hanz commented. “He did so because one villager caught a deadly plague and apparently that’s gonna spread outside if he only disposes of that one guy, so committed genocide on the entire population and blew the village up for good measure.”
“That’s way too far!” Rin exclaimed.
While Alicia was also shocked by the Wanderer’s action, she could see his logic but it’s still unacceptable nonetheless.
“Yes, and that is why we have to stop him whenever he appears,” Rose stated. “Hanz here was very proficient in fighting Timeless Hero that he developed a ‘sixth sense’ for where Timeless Hero would appear, at least in worlds with the Maneg System. Though, he is fighting Timeless Hero over a petty grudge.” The last sentence was unheard.
“Yeah, so the ‘Hero’ part is because of his past.” Hanz continued. “But, he didn’t exactly like being called a hero, so we put it in his codename.”
“Alright, any questions?” Both girls shook their head, Aqua then turned to Hanz. “Your proper report.”
Hanz gave another groan. “It went like this.”
Apparently ended up in a three-way fight between Hanz and Crea, Timeless Hero, and the Green Deity and Spawns. While Crea was [Shield]ing both of them, Hanz shoots Timeless Hero and the Spawns coming at them. Timeless Hero, while repelling Hanz’s assault, kept firing his white bow at the Green Deity (and Spawns) who, despite getting a big head after killing the champion, was cautious enough to avoid getting hit by it, though some arrows did injure him. The Green Deity meanwhile, was providing covering acid shots (and blocking arrow shots).
Case in point, by the time Hanz irritated (by means of killing him many times) Timeless Hero enough to leave Geron Yor (yes, killing him enough time will get him to leave, as stalling him of his work in one world meant that he might miss the crisis of other worlds, at least that is what Hanz thought as his excuse for chickening out), over ninety-five percent of the (remaining) Spawns are dead. It will consume a lot of time to restore the army back to its full might. Hanz also threw a [Missiles] for good measures.
“At the very least, the Green Deity ain’t gonna start a massive counter-invasion taking over three-quarters of Beacons before the next champion arrives,” Hanz concluded.
The downside is that too much was invested in the invasion for the Yellow Deity’s followers’ part that they could not form another army to attempt finishing the Green Deity off without a champion. So both sides are weakened, there should be a brief moment of peace.
Azhure: Now this is the hard part to write.
“I see.” Aqua nodded. “I believe this is all settled, now we shall-”
That voice came from none other than Rin.
“You can, can you? You can defeat the Green Deity back there, right?”
She did not forget what she demanded to know back in Geron Yor before she was interrupted, unlike a certain someone.
“And even what Timeless Hero does is unforgivable, what he is doing back there is to defeat the Green Deity that tried to destroy Geron Yor. So why stop him and let the Green Deity alive? Isn’t it against what we do?”
While Rin was a cheerful and supportive girl who brings a smile to everyone, she was also the naive heroine type like her brother who wouldn’t let go of something like this easily – she’s still eleven after all. Again, Maneg Souls’ influence on the Court Wizards’ mind is the suppression of emotion in a situation where it is deemed dangerous and the minor influence of easily get along with other Court Wizards, which is why relatively like-minded individuals are picked as Court Wizards. So Rin is showing her pure, unadulterated heart.
There was a moment of silence. Then Hanz gave this: “I stopped the Wanderer because he doesn’t deserve to, nor do we. Remember rule number eight. Master- no, Rose, you explain it to her.” Hanz turned his back to leave the chamber, Crea followed. But before he went through the door, he looked back and said, “also, that world where Timeless Hero was born, it was already dead when we got there. And I hate his guts for him playing the hero. Goodbye.” With that, Hanz slammed the door out of the chamber and Crea gave a nod of apology and promptly left.
“…” Rin was left in an unstable emotional state. Fearing a breakdown, the more mature and open-minded Alicia looked to Rose. Without [Telepathy], the vampire knew what she was going to say.
But the black-haired girl had beaten them to the punch. “Sorry, everyone,” she said. “For bursting out like that. I’ll listen after I calm myself…”
Although the atmosphere was supposed to be the solemn kind, Aqua took the opportunity to brew some tea, and Alicia took out a cake stashed in the refrigerator. Rose got off her wheelchair and sat with Rin, embracing the little girl with her voluptuous body. And Voice was cracking jokes to make Rin laugh, but it was terrible. Owen left the chamber so the impending conversation is between girls, even though the topic’s not appropriate.
Moments later, they all seated with Rose changing couch facing Rin. The eleven-year-old ready to listen.
“As Aqua has said, we should not directly interfere with others’ affairs that they can do on their own.”
“But can we not help?”
“Hmm… To answer your question,
“1. Let no one witness you should you not belong there.
“2. Never use more than you need.
“3. Choose for the betterment of the world.
“4. Never reveal higher-level technology of another world to a lower one, unless necessary.
“5. Maintain the flow of the natural order.
“6. To die or forsake a world you do not belong to, forsake the world.
“7. Cherish your partner, comrades, friends, and those whom you care.
“8. Let actions be done by those who deserve it.
“9. Preserve your duties, loyalties, and wishes.
“10. Stay true to yourself.
“Did you notice what I said?”
It only took a split second for Rin to know. “…Ah!”
Alicia too, realized this when the full list of the Rules of Engagement was given to her. The first five rules coincide with the Otherworldly Court’s purpose to protect the balance of worlds, and then the sixth rule said to abandon a stranger world to preserve your own life. And she was explained and understood its reason.
“Yes,” Rose continued. “These sets of rules, or more accurately… guidelines, could contradict each other. Rules one to five relates to the cause of this organization, but the last five is… more for ourselves.”
She tilted her head. “Uhn? What do you mean ‘more for ourselves’?”
“Because too many have died needlessly in the Eleven-Century War and many friends would have died, so we made these guidelines to protect ourselves.
“An example would be the tenth guideline. Hanz had stayed true with his bitter rivalry with Timeless Hero, he fought him no matter what the occasion.”
“Then… How does the eighth rule, I mean guideline entail?”
“Let actions be done by those who deserve it. It could be interpreted in some ways, but the true meaning of it is that you should not meddle with dangerous affairs that you don’t have to.” She paused. “Rin, I suppose you were not informed of this, but the Green Deity was a former Wanderer. A feud with the Yellow Deity had caused him to only be able to transfer out of Geron Yor if the world is destroyed and the Yellow Deity killed – we still kept his file. You have seen Hanz’s report, even Timeless Hero, who is stronger than the average Court Wizard barred Hanz, only done moderate damage to him. What I am telling you is that fighting the Green Deity ourselves is too dangerous especially you, and Alicia. You could get killed and your brother would grieve.”
“…But I just want to help…”
Sipping tea to clear her throat. “…Tell me, what was the promise you made for your brother, Haruto?”
“…’I promise to save people so that their loved ones would not grieve for their loss.'”
“And because of it, your brother never followed the eighth guideline.” Pouring another cup of tea. Rose continued, “he had stuck his neck into every trouble and almost got himself killed most of the time. Like you have wanted, he went and fought a demon lord and he narrowly died after barely defeating said demon lord. I am sure you remembered your brother not coming home once, right?”
“…Onii-chan…” Rin muttered, reverting to her mother tongue. Contemplating the fact she got her beloved older sibling to risk his life for a promise, culminating to go missing to save her senior by two months.
“Rin,” Rose said to get her attention. “Please, do not follow what your brother did. Even he would not want you to do it.”
“…” But the justice-loving girl hesitates for her answer.
“Alright,” Aqua spoke up. “You should take a few weeks rest to sort out your feelings. I will inform Pierre about it, you should go home.”
“H-Hai…” Rin replied in Japanese, her head downcast.
The Fire Guardian turned to Alicia. “You should get some rest, it has been a long day.”
“Oh, and please remember this. Stay true to yourselves. No matter what.”
Azhure: So yeah, this is how I’m making this. Also, in regards to the Wanderer, this is to show that the Otherworldly Court is not alone in this universe, the Dimensional Sea is a huge place and some may prove to be too much for them.
- Barrett M90
- FN P90
- Glock 17
- Spencer Model 1882
World: Geron Yor
Tech: Sword and Magic