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Kamiroo Wolf
09-05-2017, 09:34 PM
What are these and how do they work?

Assassination/Assistance, Containment, and Recruitment(ACR) contracts, originally designed for members of Sanctuary, are missions in which Gladiators receive a file containing information pertaining to a target of interest. Whether they are a lost lamb in need of guidance, a struggling person in need of aid, or a dangerous situation/character in need of defusing, the purpose of these ACRs are to have Gladiators and those with exceptional capabilities serve a higher purpose than blood-sport(should they seek anything else).

For the most part, the outcome of these assignments depend on the undertaker's judgement in relation to whether or not the subject in question is killed, captured, recruited, or assisted. The only way to fail one of these missions is to engage and/or bring us the wrong person.

When you get a target, just write a little story on your encounter with them and how things turn out and bingo you're done.

If you wish to do a target collab, simply let me know who it is you're collabing with and I will send the same target to the both of you/answer any questions you both may have.

Neat. How do I get one?

Simple, really. Just send me a PM asking for one or ask for one here on the home thread and I should have the target ready for you in no time. If you want any requirements or challenges, such as a more "horror" themed prospect, just say so.

So... what's my motivation?

Doing the right thing or doing the wrong thing, for reward or simply to make that decision. Your motivation is just that. If you don't want to do them, then don't do them.

However, if you do decide to take on a mission, there's the potential to gain more characters for you to work with if you wish to write them beyond this thread, but yeah. These are just a way for writers to stretch their wings, test out a character, or occupy themselves between the next fight and the next big event.

Before we go on... I thought this was Sanctuary's thing?

Well, it was. Though, since Sanctuary ran out of space on the home thread and people outside of Sanctuary began to ask for ACRs, I thought I'd open the concept up to a broader audience. Sanctuary members and targets related to the clan will still receive a section of this thread dedicated to their old/future works(for the sake of canon, mostly).

ACRs are still run by and go through the good folks of Sanctuary, though there are also general requests for aid from the public now embedded into the missions.



Think of this as the ol' wanted board. Here you've got your priority targets and requests ranging from low priority to high. Above high priority are targets relating to Sanctuary's motivations/agenda/canon/etc. Due to canon and unnecessary secrecy, I'm leaving Sanctuary Target information vague until undertaken.





Name: Winston Rwad Kitt
Status: Target
Age: 20

His profile can be found here, to save space. (http://forums.stickpage.com/showthread.php?99546-Winston)

Request:

An odd number of stick figures have begun to pop up, with sightings of them coming in from all over the globe. Winston shouldn't even be capable of maintaining half the numbers of reports we've received, let alone creating this many. Last we heard, he's got some training underway with his dad somewhere in Africa. If possible, we'd like a familiar face to drop by and assess the situation... see what he thinks of all this and inquire as to whether or not he's involved.

Desired Outcome:

Consulted. This is a special mission. Unless he happens to be up to no good(highly unlikely for a young man like Winston), you are by no means to harm him. If he is plotting something malicious, detain him without killing. It is crucial Winston not die yet.

If you're itching for a fight... perhaps offer to help him train? Still, it's not a priority here.





Names: Ida(Female) & Ira(Male)
Statuses: Targets
Ages: Inconclusive.
Heights: 5 foot 4 inches and 6 foot even. Approximately 164.5 and 182.8 respectively.

Appearance:

Ida is a Hispanic female of apparently young age with smooth, tan skin with flowing brown hair and digital green eyes. Compared to Ira, her build is relatively slim and more geared toward agility, with most of her muscle focused toward he legs and lower half. She will wear whatever, but has a general grip on fashion and dress.

Ira is a black male of age equal to his counterpart, Ida. His skin is dark brown and coarse, with a clean shaven(bald) head accompanied by a pair of digital green eyes. He is certainly the more physical of the two, his heavily built upper body and intimidating figure poised constantly as though to protect his sister. He also does not care what he wears, so long as it isn't feminine or restrictive in any way.

Personality:

Ida and Ira are brother and sister, sharing a tight bond that makes the two of them practically inseparable. They both care deeply for one another and look out for themselves at all times. The digital twins are a power team, capable of compensating for one another's weaknesses and keeping each other on their feet in the most dire of situations.

However, Ida is noticeably more compassionate and caring than Ira, her own desire to help those in need leading the two of them into trouble more often than her brother would like. Still, it's her gentleness that keeps him sane and calm. She is also much more intelligent when it comes to academic knowledge(book smart, you could say). However, ever since she was freed from Dex Omni's "Biome Manipulation and Inhabitant Creation Software", Ida has grown noticeably more rugged in her living.

Ira, the fighter and defender of the pair, stands to guard Ida in their new home. He has a relatively short fuse compared to his sister but this is because he'd rather dispatch anyone who might even possibly present a threat. His confidence allows Ida a sense of security, and she surely would have been swallowed by this new world if it weren't for him. He is more intelligent than Ida when it comes to practical things(street smart, you could say). Since he left the BMICS, his patience has grown exponentially.

Abilities:

World Scan(Ida)- Ida has the ability to scan any living creature or plant and get a full, detailed report on what they are. As such, she's a knowledge fountain- capable of completely understanding the limitations and exceptions of her enemies before they even get a glimpse of her abilities.

Omni-Proficiency(Ira)- Ira is able to use pretty much everything as an affective weapon in combat with nigh deadly prowess. Even a bar of soap can be a devastating armament in Ira's hands.

Request:

Originally, Ida & Ira were glitches in a program designed to create, alter, and erase worlds. However, after the death of their creator and deletion of their world, they found themselves walking among those of true reality, utterly lost but excited to finally be freed. Unfortunately, we still aren't quite sure what the two of them are, and we'd like to get a better understanding of how they function before we allow them to proceed any further.

Desired Outcome:

Contained. Detain the two of them and bring them in. All we've got is quite few questions.













Name: Vyran "Blackwater" Osborne
Status: Contractor
Age: 62 Years.
Height: 5 foot 8 inches(approximately 173 centimeters)

Appearance:

An older Caucasian male often dressed in sharp businessman attire with paled blonde hair and almost drained, blue eyes. His head is nearly shaven bald with a thing, but notice layer of hair on top complete with designer glasses, thousand dollar watch, and other accessories designed to show off his success. As far as his build is concerned, he's relatively rotund compared to other men of his age and isn't fit for much more than supervising.

Personality:

A modest man, but a sly snake who has built a multi-million dollar empire on lies, cheating, and ungodly affairs. His wisdom comes from years of hardship and perseverance, which both include struggles of a time before wealth and ventures of the days following. Sharp-tongued, quick witted, and painfully sarcastic to the point of being condescending, simply having a conversation with the man is somewhat of a challenge in itself.

Vyran isn't opposed to hard work, and is much more likely to get his hands dirty than other elitists, but what would be the point if you're hired to do the lifting for him.

Abilities:

Nothing worth mentioning.

Request:

"A few recent affairs have earned me a spot on some notorious hit lists around the globe. I've already lost several good men simply going about my everyday life, but there are rumors of an employee walk-out in protest of my methods at my company's main office building. Something seems suspicious about the timing, and I'm almost certain someone's orchestrating an assassination attempt on a large scale. All I need you to do is stand by my side during this protest and make sure nothing gets through to me during the commotion. I've got the slick to grease your palms, rest assured."

Desired Outcome:

Do as you wish with Osborne, but understand that his death will reflect poorly on you as well as leave an international corporation without its head. The ripples of your decision will surely be felt if you fail, though you can expect quite the payout should you succeed in his request.





Aliases: "Alcatraz"/"The Conflicted Champion"/"Red Crow"
Status: Target
Age: Unknown.
Height: 6 foot 3 inches. Approximately 190.5 Centimeters.

Appearance:

Alcatraz is fairly tall and well-built man of fairly young age who constantly wears a crimson-covered, porcelain mask with no eyes cut out for sight and no mouth visible. It's simply a plain, red mask that conceals his face. His exposed, tan skin and slicked black hair suggest hispanic descent. On his body, he wears a crude, plain red, and cotton undertop with elbow-length sleeves that has a spectacular collar full of matching maroon feathers. On his legs he wears a pitch black pair of comfortable sweatpants accompanied by red basketball shoes.

For a weapon, Red Crow carries a military hatchet spray-painted to match his outfit with black axe-head and crimson paracord wrap handle. It's strapped to his side via a simple utility belt.

Personality:

Aside from the obvious attention to detail when it comes to his dress, Alcatraz seems very much focused on his image and how he's portrayed.

When the media mistakenly dismissed him as a "superhero wannabe", he proceeded to slaughter a busy morning street full of men, women, and children alike.

When they corrected themselves and spoke out against him, he proceeded to artistically and literally thank every local news station by painting his gratitude in the blood of innocents.

From what we know, he's an attention-hungry serial killer who's striving to make a name for himself with senseless killing sprees and brutal depictions of both horrific life and beautiful death. In fact, there are even a few people who have taken to interpreting the intricacies of his "body-sculptures" to better understand the champions' motivations.

Abilities:

Nightmare Force- Alcatraz has the ability release a powerful burst of force in a target area capable of blowing a hole through concrete walls with ease. This force does not necessarily have to originate from his direct person, however, as Alactraz has been documented using this ability to repel enemies at distances of up to 2 meters. While this blast does have the potential to be lethal, Alcatraz prefers to get his own hands bloody and usually uses this ability to escape or initiate his string of havoc. There is a limit to how much he can use it as well, as one or two full force blasts often leave him gasping for air- as though jerking awake from a terrific nightmare.

Rebellious Coil- The Conflicted Champion has been shot. Many times. However, while a fatal wound may incapacitate him for a varying degree of time, his body always finds a way to persist. Even when dealt a critical blow to the brain, run through by a golden spear, or bleeding beyond care, Alcatraz has simply pressed on in his violent siege. Beheading would be your best bet, but removal of limbs has worked wonders as well, despote them always regrowing separately at sudden, random times.

Military Axe- Red Crow carries a black, steel military axe with a paracord-wrapped handle.

Miscellaneous- His Nightmare Force doesn't appear to work on Black Owl... though he's never tried it.

Quote:

"The very idea of anybody being exempt from my conquest sickens me. We'll see how much of a 'Sanctuary' you really are."

Desired Outcome:

Assassinated. Sencarn, the leader of Sanctuary, attempted to kill Red Crow already and failed. He blames his tight schedule for pulling out of the fight, but it was a downhill battle from the start. Anyway, Alcatraz is a threat to the city no matter how you look at him. He needs to be stopped as soon as possible.





Aliases: "Black Owl"/"The First Incarnation"
Status: Target
Age: Unknown.
Height: 5 foot 9 inches. Approximately 175 centimeters.

Appearance:

Black Owl is a lean built fighter with almond colored skin, golden eyes, and messy dark brown curly hair. While his race isn't exactly clear, he may be a mix between African-American and Taiwanese. He wears varying baggy clothes that often blend the colors of navy blue and white in different fashions. Most notably, he wears a baggy pair of black sweatpants with a white waist-line and a matching t-shirt hoodie hybrid that works better for breezes than the actual cold.

Black Owl carries a variety of weapons. First, he wields a large sniper rifle for long-range combat since his ability allows him to easily reach vantage points. Second, he wields a spear that retracts, extends, and it's capable of being thrown with relative ease. Finally, he wields a pair of navy blue/white karambit knives for close range combat.

Personality:

Very easy to talk to, calm, and understanding, Black Owl is a nonchalant character of wiser thought than most in his age range. For a criminal, he's fairly open and kind, but can be a bit consumed with his work when it's time for him to get serious.

Black Owl is an assassin, a superhero, a folktale, a legend, etc. People leave requests under trees and the Owl tends to see and fulfill most of them. Whether it's a job as simple as defusing an argument between friends or a task as complex as weaving a delicate thread of assassinations, the first incarnation is willing to do almost anything.

Abilities:

Scene Shift- Nothing too serious. As long as he focuses and pictures himself in an area within sight or memory, Black Owl can teleport himself and others to that area with relative ease. Since this ability isn't as fluid in the heat of combat, it's mostly used to set up shots with his sniper rifle from prime positions.

Subjugate- Owl has the ability to override someone's own abilities by forcing an incapacitating weighted pressure on them. Depending on the person's resolve, this pressure can either render them unable to move(from forcing them to the ground or locking up their legs)- as though watching some horror in a dream- or be a slight inconvenience to their actions. While this ability cannot in itself be fatal in regards to the amount of pressure applied, it can certainly be annoying for someone who relies on abilities that need to be actively used, as the main function of this ability is disruption.

Equipment- Black Owl carries a variety of weapons. First, he wields a large sniper rifle for long-range combat since his ability allows him to easily reach vantage points. Second, he wields a spear that retracts, extends, and it's capable of being thrown with relative ease. Finally, he wields a pair of navy blue/white karambit knives for close range combat.

Quote:

"You've never known the pain of walking up to a tree to find someone's grandmother- half-naked- spread out across the pile of requests talking about some 'sweet loving'... These are dark times, man."

Desired Outcome:

How about a friendly spar? Most police and law officials want him behind bars, but we're honestly just curious as to why Black Owl does as he does, and what he's like in question real fight.














Name: Vincent Copas
Status: Target
Age: 20 Years
Height: 5 foot 5 inches. Approximately 165 centimeters.

Appearance:

Young Caucasian male with flowing, dirty blond hair, a face full of acne, and brown eyes more like the color of shit than almonds. Fairly short and stocky kid with bummy clothes who carries a wide variety of pills and recreational drugs on his person. Find him wearing wrinkled t-shirts, jeans that have holes in them(and not for the sake of fashion), and grime-covered vans.

Personality:

Really, he's just a sick kid who's using his talents for the wrong business. Usually stoned out of his gourd and suffering from some extreme hallucination, Vincent is a small-time drug dealer who pedals to the normal folk. He claims his pills can grant superhuman abilities to the non-gifted masses, and uses his own natural abilities as the "proof in the pudding". In reality, his drugs will make you merely feel like superman for quite some time, before the extreme crash hits you like a slug forged entirely of kryptonite to the dome. He's a liar, a cheat, and an indirect killer in some extreme cases. He's never answered for his crimes because anybody Vincent's ever wronged is rendered unable to even so much as climb from the hovel his drugs put them and their loved ones in.

Abilities:

Structural Manipulation/Frame Hardening- Vincent has the ability to morph and manipulate his own bones at will, with the skin and surrounding areas of his body warping to often extreme degrees before the area hardens to a durability akin to copper. He often uses this ability to warp his arms into blades when a deal goes wrong, his shoulder blades into violent spines when he needs to get someone off his back, or his chest into plate armor when a few more projectiles are headed his way than favorable. It should be noted that Vincent is no expert at utilizing this ability to its fullest, so he often over-estimates the strength of his Frame Hardening.

Drug/Poison Immunity- Vincent has figured out a way to manipulate his body in order to harmlessly filter drugs and negative poisons from his system. As such, he can take his pills, reap their benefits, and walk away safely as often as he wishes.

"Next Gen"- With drugs he claims will birth the next generation(hence the name) of gladiators and enhanced persons, Vincent is a capable fighter. The drugs render a person's nervous reactions dull and, as such, limits how they feel pain. In addition, it removes the limitations of your subconscious, so every punch is meant to deal as much damage as possible(freed from inhibition). That's pretty much it aside from increased heart rate, wild hallucinations, and countless side-effects including permanent tissue damage, headache, etc.

Miscellaneous- He's great at poker, but only because he cheats on an expert level.

Quote:

"Slip a pill in Mom's drink to keep her fists firm enough to drop Dad. Slip Dad a pill in the hospital to keep his ass there. All in a day's work, and if your shit is deep enough, I'll do it for a discount."

Desired Outcome:

Assassinated or Contained. He's a sick person and the world would probably prefer him dead rather than alive, but the police might have a few cells left for him.





Name: Irwin "Greenbelt" Taylor
Status: Target
Age: 41 Years
Height: 6 foot 5 inches. 198 centimeters.

Appearance:

This tall lanky bastard is pretty much a tree in people clothes. His skin is rough and resembles redwood bark in both durability and color, while his hair is a bushy green color that hangs down to his shoulders. His eyes are hollow, black, and his nose is elongated to look like a mosquito's proboscis. His mouth is pitch black and hollow as well. In fact, we'd be lying if we said he didn't look like a twisted cartoon character. His clothes even suggest he has a closet full of the same outfit, as he wears the same striped, blue/light-blue collared shirt every day with beige cargo shorts to match. I should clarify that he has fingers and other human appendages before we all assume he has branches for fingers.

Personality:

He is actually mute. He couldn't groan and rustle like a tree if he wanted to, and often speaks with simple looks, hand signs, and his fists(in violent cases). While Greenbelt is a fairly neutral character, it's his constant absent-mindedness and troublesome ability that has roused the concerns of citizens.

Abilities:

Insect Pheromone- It doesn't matter what time of the year it is or where Greenbelt himself is, but bugs are highly attracted to whatever lies beneath Irwin's bark-like skin. As you might have guessed, this is a problem for a creature as free and unrestricted as a Irwin, who often finds himself in public areas swarmed by beetles, bees, and every other type of creep you can imagine. He doesn't mind the attention, but everyone else sure does.

Unnatural constitution- Irwin Taylor never eats, sleeps, or drinks anything. He just... wanders about and sometimes sits in single places for hours- if not days- on end.

Request:

"Listen, there's no need to hurt him or anything. Just try and find him a place to be that isn't dead at the center of civilizations. I mean for Christ's sake, is it even healthy for all these bugs to be around him like that?! What about the ecosystems and what not?!"

Desired Outcome:

Contained, we suppose. It's a fairly simple job, but this is what we expected when we opened ourselves up to the people.

Kamiroo Wolf
09-05-2017, 09:36 PM
Sanctuary Targets



“Mmmm, nope, that’s not the book that I’m searching for” said a white haired man in a library


“Neither this one” said again anxious


The man was the new member of the clan called Sanctuary, Nathan Kurogane aka Ergos, the energy priest. He was searching for a really rare bestiary that contained information about many races, including Sprites and as his target is a half Sprite, it could be useful. He went to the beast section looking to it and he found one similar to the one that he was searching for.

“This one could be useful. Spirits of the forest” said Nathan reading the cover of the really old book, then he opened it and searched the letter S. He found the Sprite page and something more, information about the Kitsune, but that would be later, his mission was more important.

“Let’s see. Sprites are a type of faery that controls the forces of the forest, the Fauna and Flora inside them. Their most peculiar characteristics are their butterfly like wings, colorful skins and eyes, and their really weak physiology as their body can break with even push with minimal strength. Interesting and very evasive creatures” said Nathan reading with devotion, this would be a really interesting mission.

His objective was to kill the Sprite and destroy their body, that was all. The leader Sencarn wanted that, he doesn’t knew why, but the orders of the leader are absolute and he couldn’t avoid the mission as, it would be a waste of his capacities as a sharpshooter and maybe he could study the physiology of the Sprite with some of their flesh or blood. Nathan continued reading and he found something interesting. Their powers can be nullified with the power of a natural energy infused black onyx, but his objective is kill them.

When he stopped reading, he went back to the beast section and picked an orb from his pocket, charged it with energy and threw it to the air, exploding and making a portal to a forest. He went through and it instantly disappeared. His phone rang loudly and he picked up.

“Yeah, Ergos here!”

“Agent Nathan, it’s me Gus, Do you remember the objective of your mission?”

“Yeah, I need to Kill or restrain her, but better kill her”

“Yeah, and I was thinking that you and I, you know a fun time together?”

“No thanks Gus, I’m not really into just having a sex night” said Nathan as he hanged up

The energy priest turned around looking upwards as he was searching for the Sprite. He propelled himself upwards and made a floating energy platform, he looked around again and he saw a big pair of purple butterfly wings and little green skinned body.

“I guess I got you, target” said him smiling and charging his right glove.

Ergos created ten energy orbs in front of him and he made a small one with his left one, with a small hand gesture, the small ball clashed with the bigger ones shooting them like marbles clashing with each other and leaving energy trails behind them. The Sprite looked backwards, she looked scared and evaded the energy projectiles with grace. Ergos made other gesture and made the trails connect with each other, then fused the ten orbs and shot it back to her, clashing with her and exploding into a paralyzing mist. He flew towards her with the platform and waved at her.


“Greetings, I’m Ergos, from the Sanctuary, I was assigned to kill you and I will do it, but give a reasonable thing why I shouldn’t kill you” said Nathan smiling weakly as the girl started to tear a little

“I-it’s… ok… I am just destruction and death… you can kill me”

“Just destruction eh? Why?”

“My powers are troublesome… if you want, then just kill me…”

“Yeah, you leech the life force with just a touch, well your seeds do it”

“Yeah… what are you going to do with me?...”

Egos smiled and took out his phone, then he called the base.

“Guys, Ergos here, target restrained”

“Ok, so our date…”

“Gus, just teleport us!”

“Fine!”

A portal appeared and Ergos manipulated the cage around his target, making it go through as he smiled. He would heal that girl someday, she was just a poor kid, he went through the portal smiling and it instantly disappeared.


Mission status: Complete





"So, this is it." said Sencarn as the two entered the underground base of Sanctuary. It was a huge cavernous space with everything that a clan could hope its base would be. Zackeroar looked around in awe of his new home. "Mortal, I must commend you for this beautiful piece of architecture. This even rivals the beauty of the Parthenon!" said the Spartan as his new leader escorted him to his own bedroom. "Why, thank you, son of Zeus! Oh, I forgot to mention." Sencarn's voice bounced around the walls of the base as they stopped right in front of the door of Zackeroar's bedroom. "No fighting inside the base. Well, except in the spar rooms, but other than that, please settle civil disputes either non-violently or outside." said the crimson eyed man. "No problem with that. I swear it. Let the gods bear witness to my oath." replied the Spartan.

Sencarn opened the oak door and gestured for Zackeroar to enter the room first. The wooden floor creaked as the metal-clad warrior entered his new lodging. "I hope this fits your needs." said the leader of Sanctuary. "Yes, yes it does. You have my thanks." Zackeroar said with a smile as he set aside his weapons and armor. "Alright, I'll be going then. Please, make yourself feel at home. The kitchen should be right down the hall if you need to eat. Me and the other clan members are always here to assist you if you need our help. Some of the others might drop by as well. I'll be calling you later." Sencarn left the room.

Three of the other members of Sanctuary visited and welcomed their new ally to the clan. One was another demigod called Ergos. He wasn't the son of any Greek gods, no, but he was the son of a blacksmith and a goddess. Zackeroar, intrigued, vowed to talk more once he was settled in. Another man named Light visited the Spartan as well. He was armor-clad in a darkish armor much like his. Apparently, he used to be much more to which Zackeroar said, "Surely one day you will return to your former glory. I swear I will help you achieve this." Dante, another member of Sanctuary, was out and not in the clan base at that moment. His latest enemy, Winston, also came and welcomed the proud warrior. Well, he tried to welcome his new clanmate. As the artist tried to enter the room, Zackeroar shut the door to his face. Other than that, the Spartan also had not met the core members of the clan yet.

The next day, Zackeroar woke up to see Sencarn standing beside his bed. "Good morning, Zackeroar. Please, get your armor and weapons ready and meet me at the briefing area." After that, the crimson-eyed leader of Sanctuary went out of the room. The demi-god quickly rose to his feet and stretched. Then, after donning his armor and grabbing his weapons, headed to the briefing room. The briefing room consisted of a table with chairs around it. All kinds of machines and doohickies which the Spartan didn't understand surrounded the table. "Ah, welcome! Please, take a seat." said Sencarn. "This is Gus." A man with a gas mask and a metal helmet nodded and shook hands with the metal-clad warrior. "This is Giselle." A woman with dark brown eyes and brown hair smiled at Zackeroar. The Spartan smiled back as Sencarn introduced an old man with a cane in his hand. "You can call me Gramps." said this same old man.

"Now that you're acquainted with everyone, let us start with the briefing." said Sencarn sternly.
"Alright, so, Zack. Can I call you Zack?" asked Gus.
"I prefer to be called Wrath Incarnate Zackeroar, son of Zeus, Protector of the Innocent and the Demonslayer, but Zack or Zackeroar is fine." replied the scion of the god of gods.
"Ok then, Zack. So, there is this one guy called Basil Fettucine. Guy's a total ass, if we can even call him a guy." replied the metal masked man.
"He calls himself a Blood Chef." said Giselle. "He, or I should say it, is a gigantic monstrosity with no facial features except a single row of pointed teeth. He towers over most, being 7 feet tall."
"I've faced scarier hellspawns than this one." boasted Wrath Incarnate.
"Yes, I'm sure you have, sonny, but this one is different." rebuked the old man. "He is a cannibal that owns a restaurant in one of the dark corners of town. Well, I don't know if we can call him a cannibal due to the fact that he doesn't seem to be human. He basically skins people alive then cooks them."
"Don't let his gentleman attitude fool you, warrior. He is as savage as he is civilized. It doesn't make sense, I know. He does gentlemanly things like holding the door for people and stuff like that. On the contrary though, he is the kind of asshole who kidnaps women and slams doors on people's throats." informed Sencarn.
"Bloody hell! This demon deserves to rot in Tartarus! I swear I will rid the earth of this monstrosity. Where do I find him?" Zackeroar zealously answered.
"He has a restaurant in town called 'Chef Basil's Bistro'. It's near the edge of the town's boundaries." said Giselle. Without a word, Zackeroar stood up and walked away.

The establishment looked fancy for a restaurant in one of the darkest places in town. It was a rectangular building with a large glass window spanning half of the front facade. Inside, you could see a black wallpaper with a red border. A golden chandelier hung from the ceiling, shedding light onto the people eating below. Well, there were none since the restaurant wasn't open yet. A sign hung from the doorknob of the dark oaken entrance. "Welcome to Chef Basil's Bistro! Open from 6:00 AM to 7:00 PM." were the words etched onto the sign.

Zackeroar felt a vibration on the left pocket of his tattered brown leggings. He put his hand inside and pulled out his phone. It was the indestructible one given to him by the leader of his former clan, Aiba Kannagi of the Wind Chasers. He removed his helmet, the plume swaying as the wind blew. Holding his helmet with his left hand, the phone's ringing stopped as the demi-god answered the call.

"Hello, mortal. Who is this?" asked the Spartan.
"Hello, Zackeroar. This is Gus." answered the voice on the other side of the phone.
"Gus? How in Tartarus did you contact me?"
"I have my ways. So, how is the mission going?"
"I'm at this fiend's lair. It says it opens at 6:00 AM. Whatever that means to you humans."
"It means he's going to arrive in about.....now."

A tall figure strolled down the street towards the bistro as the Spartan observed from a distance, still talking to Gus on his phone. Upon closer observance, he saw that the giant of a man had no facial features. Only a single row of teeth.

"Gus."
"Yes, what is it? That was a long silence, Zack."
"Target spotted. I'll call you when I have slain this beast."

"Good morning." said the giant to Zackeroar as he passed by. The Spartan observed him and eyed him from head to toe. Basil had a crimson-splattered chef hat on his head and an apron covered in mucus in blood. His body was well chiseled and he had muscles all around. He had his feet on the concrete sidewalk, bare and without any form of protection.
"Ah, yes, yes." said the demi-god after a short pause. "Good morning to you as well."

Basil nodded and seemed to give a smile then walked to the alley between his restaurant and the brick building next door. A door creaked and Zackeroar knew it was time. He put on his helmet and grabbed his spear and shield. "What do the mortals say? What was it again? Oh, yes. Now I remember. It's show time." He walked with a certain swagger that only he had when it was time for battle. The wooden door crashed down with a mighty kick from the Spartan.

"What are you doing!?" yelled the faceless monster.
"Basil Fetuccine. I have come to stop your cannibalism and demonic acts, you unworthy sack of horse shit!"
"Come at me then!" said Basil as he held a frying pan in hand.

"This kitchen is too small. I am at a severe disadvantage here. Better bring it outside. Ares, guide my blade. Zeus, watch over your son. Athena, give me wisdom in this battle of mine. Hades, uncle. Swear to me you will have room for this Blood Chef in the Underworld." Zackeroar thought as his enemy charged, frying pan raised above his head and ready to strike. The Spartan sidestepped right and the Chef continued to run right through the entry way and into the alley. The demi-god kicked the back of the seven foot giant, sending him a few steps forward before falling face first onto the sidewalk. "The bigger they are, the harder they fall." Zackeroar said with a smirk on his face.

Relentless, the demi-god raised his spear high and brought it down, steel tip first towards the head of the fallen giant. Before the thrust could connect, the Blood Chef kicked with both of his feet. Zackeroar blocked with his shield, but the force of the kick caused him to stagger back as Basil jumped to his feet. He then rushed towards the Spartan, who was still recovering from the blunt force of the kick.

Fetuccine raised the pan on his right hand and swung it horizontally, aiming for Zackeroar's left temple. The Spartan sidestepped, dodging the pan as it swung close to his head. Then, he thrust his spear towards the exposed torso of his enemy. The Blood Chef took a step back, barely managing to dodge the spear as it ripped the front of his apron.

"Bloody hell, mate! Why'd you do that!?" he said as he tore his apron and threw it on the concrete road.

In a fit of rage, the giant charged the Spartan like a bull. It sent the demi-god to the brick wall as the chest and shoulders of the seven footer crashed into the body of the smaller man. Zackeroar grunted as the armor on his back screeched when he hit the wall and slumped. Quickly, the giant grabbed the fully armored warrior and raised him above his head. A moment later and he was sent crashing down towards the pavement.

The pan hit Zackeroar's helmet as he lay on the sidewalk. He screamed as his helmet rang when metal hit metal.

"What in Zeus's name!?" he said as he felt a searing hot pain on his left cheek. The giant continued to pummel his defenseless foe with his hot frying pan. Each hit was met with a grunt as Zackeroar felt his strength growing weaker and weaker. "Damn this demon! Oh, wait. He's getting slower and slower." He grunted. "I have to block him the next time."

With all the strength he could muster, Zackeroar blocked with his heavy bronze shield. The pan ringed and vibrated as metal crashed against metal. Taking advantage of this, the Spartan used his right foot to kick his opponent in the crotch. The impact sent the giant staggering back as he screamed loudly. "Ow! I'll get you for that!" shouted the Blood Chef.

The Spartan got to his feet, shield and spear in hand, while Basil was still recovering. He feinted a thrust with his spear and bashed with his shield. The Blood Chef retaliated by grabbing the shield with both hands and throwing it as far as he could. "Son of a witch!" exclaimed Zackeroar. He grabbed his spear by the oak shaft with two hands then hit his opponent on the right part of his neck, the wooden oak shaft barely hitting the gigantic monster. Then, he brought it back, hitting the left part of Basil's neck.

He tried thrusting at Fetuccine's face, but it was met by the pan of the Blood Chef himself. The spear was sent flying as a horizontal slash parried the thrust. Quickly, Basil raised the pan above his head and brought it down, aiming for the head of the smaller combatant. Zackeroar sidestepped right and ran behind him. He punched the shin of the giant, causing him to kneel one on knee. "Seems like I won't need to use Wrath. Heh." the Spartan said as he unsheathed his greatsword. With a powerful horizontal slash, the monster's head was disconnected from the neck. Blood squirted everywhere as the head rolled in front of the killer.

"You were never fit for the wRHG, you demonic pile of goat shit. Neither were you fit to live in this world, you cannibalistic nightmare. May you suffer in the Underworld forever, fiend." muttered the demi-god as he threw two drachma at the corpse of the seven footer. "Say hello to the ferryman for me, Basil Fetuccine."

Grabbing his weapons, he headed home. Zackeroar got lost a few times in what he called a "maze of a town". Finally, as the sun set in the west and the sky turned to an red orange hue, the Spartan made it to the base of his new clan. He walked with a sack in his hand and what seemed to be a round figure inside of it.

He entered the briefing room and was surprised to see everyone there. Gus, Sencarn, Gramps, and Giselle were all seated on the very same table and seemed to not have moved since Zackeroar left.

"So, how did the mission go?" asked Sencarn.

Zackeroar dropped the brown sack and let the round figure roll forward on the floor.

"What is this?" asked Gus.
"That, Gus, is Basil's head." answered Giselle.
"Good job, Zackeroar!" shouted Sencarn as the group applaused.
"The gods and godesses helped me. I did most of the heavy lifting, though." said Zackeroar with a smirk on his face.
"Hahahaha." Gramps laughed. "Well, warrior, I think it's time for you to rest. Good job once again, Zack."
"Yes, good job. Go rest now for we may need you in the future." said Sencarn as Zackeroar bowed and exited the room.


Light stretched back his shoulders, cracking his dried skin and dead bones as he moved, and turned his head to the mattress store. The shop emanated a light blue color in the dark of night, illuminating the surroundings with its brightness. The inside was a sleek white, the walls adorned with pictures of scenery made to calm those that gazed upon them. People wandered around within, unsure what to buy from the store, as the store had a large variety of beds. Light stepped into the store. He didn’t have his armor on this time, instead just adorning a dark blue robe he had with him in his belongings. His head was hooded and the face covered by the scarf he had gotten earlier that day. The robe concealed his undead form; one could simply assume it was an shy tall man. He looked cautiously around, walking down the middle of the store, his naked dead feet pressing heavily onto the clean floor. Behind him he left a trail dirt brown footsteps and grey skin flaking onto the ground. A worker turned his head as he saw Light walk in through the door, and plastered on a smile. Quickly approaching with a clipboard, the worker stopped a meter in front of the hulking robed man.

“Can I help you sir?” The worker asked inquisitively, holding his clipboard close to his chest. Light turned his head downwards to the voice and replied.

“No.”

“Then I’m going to have to ask you to go outside again, you are leaving a trail of dirt from your shoes and we don’t like dirty floors in this store.”

Light stepped forward to the worker, turning his head down all the way to look down at the shorter man. The worker gulped, intimidated by the towering being in front of him. His eyes twitched a bit as the robed man spoke once more.

“I’ll leave when my business here is done.” He started to step past the worker, reaching forward with his right leg. He had barely taken a step when the worker in turn moved in front of him again.

“You’ll leave when I ask you to. Don’t think that by being tall you scare me in the slightest.” Light started to tense his hand, the bone coming through the skin as he tried once more to come past. This time, the worker reached to grab his arm. Light elbowed his arm away and slammed his hand into worker’s throat, lifting him up with his cold hands. The robe on his arm dangled off, showing off the undead arm lifting the man up. The worker was in pure shock as his eyes widened in fear and he started to breathe faster and faster, completely concentrated on Light’s face. He could feel Light’s hand tightening on his throat, the air he desperately breathed for slowly slipping away. Light moved his face closer to the worker, his blue fiery eyes glowing through the scarf on his face.

“And you’ll die when I ask you to.”

“okay okay okay okay, you’re the boss! I’ll leave you alone! Just please don’t hurt me!” The worker whispered, his voice getting lighter and lighter as the robed man squeezed on his windpipe.

“Now tell me where I can find Joyce Romano.”

“She’sonthebedattheendoftheroompleaseletmego. ” The worker spoke so quickly that Light could barely hear what he was saying. Sighing loudly, he released his grip on the workers neck. The man fell to the ground hard, face planting onto the floor as he wheezed for breath. Light turned his head around. Most, if not all, the people in the store were staring at him with frightened and curious eyes. Light spoke to them in the most terrifying voice he could.

“What are you all looking that?” And with those words they all quickly bolted back to what they were doing. Light stepped over the wheezing body of the man he was strangling and walked to the end of the room.

He walked for about thirty seconds and stopped at the bed at the end of the long corridor that was the store. On a light blue bed lay his target, Joyce. She lay down on the bed, completely relaxed and oblivious to what just happened just a few meters ahead. Light heard her breath, it was soft and in a way relaxing. He stepped to the side of the bed and leaned over it, looking down at his target. A bit of his scarf dripped down and touched her face gently. She moved a bit, as she slowly opened her eyes. At first she was drowsy as he returned back to the world of the awake, but as her sight returned to her, the drowsiness turned into surprise.

“Are you Joyce Romano?”

“Depends on who’s asking.”

“A member from Sanctuary is asking.”

“Sactuary? Oh you mean the guys who sit around and complain about the system they’re stuck in but never actually do something about it?” Light was about to answer that question, but he froze, as he had no answer to give. He quickly composed himself.

“I was sent here to recruit you into our clan, we require assistance by all we can find.”

“What makes you say I would even be interested in joining your clan?”

“We know about your family.” And with that Joyce shot up from her bed. Her head barely missed the towering giants face, and Light recoiled back in surprise. Her mildly tired but playful face turning into one of concern. She bit her finger as she spoke quietly.

“How do you people even know about that?”

“Word travels quickly through the mouths of the curious. Nothing stays secret, nothing spoken stays silent, and nothing written stays hidden.”

“Nice poetry.”

Joyce strolled around the bed for a few seconds in thought, her mind frozen in the process of figuring out what to do. Finally, she spoke once more with a determined voice.

“What do I get from joining in your little club?”

“We will assist you with finding your family.”

“Is that a guarantee, or a promise?” Joyce asked while staring right into Light’s fiery eyes.

They both stood there for a while in complete silence, no sounds but the light on the roof of the store. A light flickered a bit, turning the room dark for half a second, the only light in that half second being the fire of Light’s eyes. With a heavy hit to his chest with his hand, Light broke the silence. The impact moved his robe a bit, showing off his gnarly dead hands. He fell to a knee and looked down, as if showing respect to royalty.

“I swear this unto you with my strongest vow.” He pulled off the robe on his other arm, full revealing both to the dismay of Joyce who felt mildly disgusted. Suddenly, a bright flash of light blinded her, piercing her eyes as she turned away in surprise, hiding her eyes behind her hands. The light dispersed quickly, and she put down her hands. Light had burned a mark on his dead hand. The mark was of a square that had lines coming out at the edges, the lines joining together in a circle. In the center of the square was what seemed to be an eye; it was hard to see on the grey flesh. Joyce sighed loudly and scratched her head

“I suppose that’s the best I’m going to get, and you don’t seem like a guy who would lie about it considering you burnt your own skin.” Light rose up from his knee as she spoke. He gestured his arm for them to leave.

And so they did.




A ray of moonlight shone down upon the asphalt roads from the dark night sky. Street lights flickered like the flames in a campfire, adding brightness to the dimly lit road. The armor-clad Spartan took long strides on the gray sidewalk. He held his shield in his left hand, ready to deflect any attack from someone stupid enough to attack this demigod. He gripped his spear tightly in his right hand, ready to strike down anyone if necessary.

Zackeroar kept his eyes and ears on high alert for anything that would show him where his target was. Usually, the demigod would use the word "target" for someone he was assigned to kill. Not in this case, though. He was sent out into the streets in the middle of the night to find someone called Aiden Wing.

He’s a member of some faction which strives for world peace through relatively peaceful means. Each member basically has their own ways of achieving this goal. Aiden tries to protect the lives of those who need his help. Sencarn and the others saw this man as someone that could be a very useful asset in the future. Aside from that, he’s aware of Sanctuary’s existence and is suspicious of the RHG system.

Being the only member available for the mission, Zackeroar was sent out to recruit this man. At first, the Spartan argued that he was the wrong choice, saying that he would rather “bash heads in than try and negotiate with some mortal”. After a rather short argument, Sencarn finally forced the demigod to accept his assignment.

The Spartan walked under a flickering street light when he suddenly heard footsteps tapping on the flat cement roof of the store right next to him. Stopping in his tracks under the flickering spot of light, he gripped his weapons tighter and looked up, trying to locate the source of the noise. It was too dark to see anything even as Zackeroar squinted his eyes to try and have a better look of the roof.

The ground itself seemed to shake as a mysterious figure dropped down from the roof above. "You're part of the RHG, aren't you?" said the man who had just jumped down. "Yes, I am. Is there any problem?" replied Zackeroar. The man was dark skinned and had quite a muscled build. He had black, chin-length dreadlocks as well as black, neatly kept chin hair. The man was wearing a white collared shirt and black dress pants along with black work shoes. A necklace with a gold and red cross dangled from his neck and his expensive looking watch glistened in the moonlight.

"I'd like to ask you a few questions," the dark-skinned man requested.The Spartan stared right into the man's dark brown eyes. "Aiden Wing?" Zackeroar asked, to the man's surprise. "How do you know my name?" Aiden said, drawing his sickle and pistol. He wielded the sickle in his right hand and the pistol in his left, ready to take this threat out.

"I am Zackeroar, son of Zeus, and I am part of Sanctuary."

"Sanctuary, eh? I'm aware of you people." The man seemed to ease up and hid his weapons once more.

"That's exactly why I'm here. How would you like to learn more about the RHG's vile corruption?"

"I'm intrigued by your proposition. I've had my suspicions about the RHG system."

"Perhaps you would like to come with me to our base of operations and have a talk with the men in charge? I swear by the
gods that I will not harm you." Zackeroar said, opting to let Sencarn and the others do the talking.

"I would like to see this base of yours. I've got some questions I need answered about the RHG." At this, the two men headed off towards Sanctuary's underground base.

~~~~~

"It's just up ahead." Zackeroar said, his armor clanking as he quickened his pace into a jog. Aiden Wing followed and matched his pace with the gladiator. The moon still shone up above, now being the only source of light as the pair travelled through the grassy plains adjacent to the cement jungle.

A ray of red light in the form of a spear suddenly shot out from somewhere. It barely missed Zackeroar whose head might already be impaled if he hadn't narrowly dodged the projectile. "Shit!" Aiden Wing exclaimed, drawing both of his weapons in the same fashion he did earlier. The Spartan looked around, scanning his surroundings to find whoever threw the spear at him.

"You were supposed to be dead!" shouted a man in a red cloak who was running at the pair. Immediately, Aiden started firing shot after shot at their assailant. The assailant dodged the shots with ease, sidestepping left and right while still charging towards his targets. Zackeroar raised his shield and pointed his spear at this man, just like a Spartan in a phalanx would do.

Aiden never seemed to run out of bullets as he fired a constant barrage of lead at their enemy. One lucky shot penetrated through the man's arm, creating a hole which bled profusely. He skidded along the ground, his white boots unconvering the dirt below the grass. The man seemed to feel no pain, but anger was apparent in his face.

"Do not interfere, mortal!" The assailant thrust his hand forward, his spear of red light following the hand's movements. The spear floated above Aiden Wing before splitting up into smaller rods. The red hooded man brought his hand down violently, prompting the red rods to smash into the ground below, forming a prison for Sanctuary's potential recruit.

The Spartan took this opportunity and angled his spear upwards, aiming for his foe. His oaken spear soared through the air in a high arc before landing directly in his opponent's chest. Or at least that's what should have happened. A split-second before the spear touched his chest, the red cloaked man reached for the oaken shaft. He grabbed it as if it was just leaning on a wall and broke it in half.

"Who are you?" Zackeroar asked in disbelief, drawing his greatsword and setting aside his shield. For the first time in a long time, the demigod was worried. A grin slowly crept its way onto the assailant's face and a red light seemed to emanate from this godlike figure.

"The name's Aethrox, son of Zeus. Be prepared to be cut down!" The red light around Aethrox shone brighter and brighter something seemed to be materializing in his hands. Without the object fully materialized, he dashed off like a predator chasing his prey. A faint trail of red light was left behind, slowly disappearing as the distance between him and his target drew closer and closer.

Zackeroar was pissed. Not at his opponent, but at himself. "Worrying is weakness!" he thought to himself. "Why am I, Wrath Incarnate, son of Zeus, scared of this worthless mortal? He should be quivering in fear!" The son of Zeus slashed his greatsword horizontally as his enemy slashed with his now fully-formed sword. Aethrox barely blocked it with his blade made of pulsing red light, causing him to stagger sidewards.

A kick from the Spartan sent his opponent a few meters back, Aethrox trying desperately to regain his balance. Zackeroar ran at his opponent and jumped, sword held high above his head. Aethrox smirked and disappeared in a red flash, only to appear a few meters left of where he once was. The demigod fell to the ground with a thud, his armor colliding with the dirt in a violent fashion.

The assailant punted the demigod's helmet, the sheer force of the kick knocking the helmet off to expose the son of Zeus's bleeding face. Aethrox laughed like a madman as he pointed his sword at the demigod's throat. "The new gods send their regards." He said as he pushed his saber deeper and deeper, blood gushing out as Zackeroar's life slowly faded away.

~~~~~

Aiden fell to his knees and broke down. His hands covered his face as he tried to process what had just happened. The bars of red light that had surrounded him were recalled as Aethrox clenched his fist together. The red bars slowly transformed back into his spear which then disappeared in a flash of red light.

Ignoring the remaining mortal, Aethrox walked away as the sun slowly rose in the east. He held his hand forward, opening a portal which illuminated the surrounding area with red light. The man jumped with all of the momentum he had gathered and entered into the portal. In an instant, the man in the red cloak was gone.

Aiden had recovered from his breakdown and ran over to his comrade. If anything could be said about this demigod, it was that he was resilient. Zackeroar breathing heavy, stuttering breaths as blood flowed out of his open throat. "I'm sorry I couldn't help," said Aiden Wing, disappointment in himself apparent in his eyes. "It was my time," Zackeroar said with much difficulty.

Eventually, a team from Sanctuary was sent out to look for the fallen Spartan and found him, but it was too late. His body had almost been drained of its blood. They grabbed the demigod's body and carried him hastily, Aiden Wing trailing behind. "The war of the gods has begun," Zackeroar muttered before his body went limp.

Gray clouds gathered up above almost instantaneously and precipitated gray drops of rain. It was as if the heavens were crying for Zackeroar's death. Red lightning soon followed, then booming thunder. This red lightning came furiously and in quick succession, as if someone up above was angry. The team hurried even more, fearing for their lives.

The crew rushed the demigod to Sanctuary's clinic where the doctors did everything they could to revive him, but it was too late. There was nothing they could do to save the demigod's life. One strange thing did happen, though. The doctors swore that they saw the figure of a god take the son of Zeus's hand and pulled his spirit up. Whether it really did happen or not, that remains a secret.


“Fucking hell I hate this job.”

Steven Lopez said to himself as he leaned back on his chair, releasing a loud breath out. His work shift wouldn’t end for another two hours, and he had nothing to do. Of course, even if there were something to do, why would he do it? Might as well just tell one of those down a floor to do it for him; and if they say no; just sack them. If they do a bad job; just blame them for incompetence and sack them. Maybe they do do a good job but give some attitude; blame them for making the workplace hostile and sack them, probably sue them too while he was at it. Yes, it was an easy life for Mr Steven Lopez, the most effort he would ever have to do in a workday would be to hand papers to people the floor under him, or to just point to the door for them to leave.

Mr Lopez was an inherently lazy man, so when his father set him up with a management position in the Rock Hard Gladiators organization (or RHG for short) who deal with making super powered people fight each other for sport, he was indifferent to it. Even the sport itself wasn’t worth the effort of even turning on the TV to Mr Lopez; it always seemed one-sided or simply boring with uninspired and uncharismatic people fighting in it. Heck, even the commentators were shitty, never making anything of the matches more interesting and essentially just saying what happens anyway for the audience to see. As if the audience needed assurance what they literally just saw.

Mr Lopez’s face tightened in disgust; there were few things in the world that entertained him. Perhaps the only thing that ever does is firing his underlings. The feeling he got from pointing towards the door and saying those magical words. “You’re fired.” That felt good to Mr Lopez, to see their shocked faces as they left the building and the other workers stared on in fear, unable to even gasp in fear. That feeling of power felt good to Mr Lopez, that feeling of authority he could exert on those people under him, like a king with his peasants, while never needing to give proper reasoning.

Every time the people above him ever asked why so many people were being fired, he would always be able to make a good excuse. “They were incredibly hostile. They refused to do the work. They were unable to meet the quota. They were unproductive and held everyone back.” And the ever so classic one; “They were sleeping on the job.” Classic. The people above never double-checked anything he said anyway, most likely to busy to check the department, so they would just swallow his excuses. Absolute cakewalk.

THUD

A sudden loud noise woke Mr Lopez from his thoughts, snapping him back to reality. He quickly got out of his chair; more like leaping out of it like a rabbit in fear of a wolf. He approached the door ever so slowly, sneaking his way to the wooden exit of his office.

THUD

Mr Lopez’s heart was in his throat as he jumped in fear, the sound was getting louder, and it was getting closer. His hand shaking, he reached for the golden doorknob slowly and cautiously. Whatever the sound was, he had to investigate it.

THUD

Slowly, he wrapped his hand around the cold handle, gripping it tightly with his whole hand. He slowly twisted the handle, and pushed his hand forward. The door creaked as it opened. As if fully opened, the outside revealed itself.

Empty.

He breathed out, finally able to relax. It was nothing; maybe someone was just playing a prank on him. Probably one of them down a floor is thinking they’re real sneaky. Just one more person on the list to fir-

THUD

Mr Lopez’s eyes widened. The sound was right outside. Now his whole body was shaking in fear. His breath became faster and faster, his heart beating as loud as an alarm clock within his body. He gulped loudly, and moved his head forward, slowly leaning over to see what was outside, putting his hands on the wall to stay balanced. He turned his head to the left as he looked outside.

Empty.

Once again Mr Lopez breathed out. It really was just a prank. Someone must be throwing rocks on a wall to scare him, or something like that. There is no danger. But poor Mr Lopez was oh so wrong. No sooner had he proudly and calmly he thought that to himself, that he felt something cold touch his hair.

Before he could even react, he felt his whole body be yanked out of the doorway, floating through the air; light as a feather. Suddenly, he felt something hard hit his back; hard enough for him to even hear something in his body crack loudly. Much like when he got a massage last week. But poor Mr Lopez was oh so wrong. As his eyes caught up with all that happened, he saw something truly horrifying in front of him.

The creature was absolutely horrifying to the refined eyes of Mr Lopez, seeing such a creature was enough to make him gag and widen in his so much you would think his eyes were ready to pop out. It had a human form, but it was no human. It had gray dried skin, the bone underneath clear to see in outline through the skin, grotesquely sticking out. The thing had a humanoid form, yet it was gigantic, it was double the height of Mr Lopez, a true giant. Then there was the face.

It was horrific, nothing that Mr Lopez could accurately ever describe to anyone. It had the form of a human skull, but the skin was as if glued straight onto it, no muscle and no fat to make it have a human appearance, more like a disgusting parody of a human face. The bone was outline clearly on the face, the skin was even stretched to some extent as if it was ready to snap open and make the bone pop out. But there was one final detail that terrified him. Instead of eyes, the creature had small blue flames in its sockets, glowing brightly.

In pure fear and shock, Mr Lopez quickly turned his head and shouted at the top of his voice.

“Security!”

But poor Mr Lopez, even he realized there was no help, for when he looked to his side, he saw red. There was blood on the floor, in a large puddle just lying there on the floor. In the center of this large red puddle lay something. He couldn’t see what it was, but then he saw a bit of blue. It was a security guard. There would be no help for Mr Lopez.

He looked forward again at the creature, too afraid to notice his whole body shaking violently. Tears welling up in his eyes as he felt the pain from his back and top of his head, feeling his hair being stretched out from its usually gel filled appearance. Fear. That’s what Mr Lopez felt. Fear filled his mind as his mind ran as quickly it could to find what to do.

But then the creature spoke. It spoke in a dark and shallow voice, like a person with a damaged voice box.

“It is time for you to pay for your sins.”

Mr Lopez was too scared to feel confused, and acted on impulse when replying.

“I don’t know what you are talking about! Let me down or I will have this whole building’s security down on you!”

Suddenly, the creature lifted something with its other hand. At first he couldn’t see what it was, so he squinted as best as he could while he felt his hair stretch out even more. It was a pass for a receptionist for the RHG organization.

“Look I don’t know who this is or what he did, but I had nothing to do with! Now let me go!”

The creature roared in rage, its voice absolutely harrowing and terrifying, the sound more akin to a banshee’s scream than any living creature, and winded up one of its hands in the form of a fist, as if threatening to use it. Its bright blue flames shining brightly, the flames nearly touching Mr Lopez’s face.

“You are part of this organization! You sent this man to kill one of my friends and you will pay for it!”

“Nobody ordered that guy to fucking kill your friend, get that through your head you idiot!”

But poor Mr Lopez noticed what he said too late, and his mouth hanged open in shock of what he said. He had no opportunity to take it back, as the creature’s fist sped up towards him.






When security finally arrived to the area, they were much too late to save Mr Lopez. When they arrived, all they saw was the body of a security guard, and then they found Mr Lopez. Poor Mr Lopez, he did not know of his own evil, perhaps if he had said differently he might still be alive. But it was not to be for poor Mr Lopez. Blood covered the wall where his slumped body lay. At first they didn’t even know that it was Mr Lopez. Why? Simple, his whole head was nothing but a mashed mess of flesh and bone; his face caved in and was nothing more than a bloody mess. Some of them gagged, a few even had to force down vomit that had slid up into their mouths, but all of them were disgusted and shocked by what they saw. In fact, for the longest few seconds they had no idea that it was Mr Lopez, since when they checked for his ID card, it was gone.

There was however one final detail that the security guards saw that truly sent shivers down their spines. One detail that they didn’t notice until it was terrifyingly clear. On the wall, painted in crimson red blood as if it was paint, was written an absolutely terrifying message that would haunt the minds of the security guards. Blood dripped down from the writing as they read the words of whatever killed Mr Lopez. The writing said:

Death in repayment for sin




Volunteer Targets




Bastet slowly prowled through the grass, her lithe movements leaving nary a visible movement amongst the foliage. Her prey was near; she could practically hear her light breathing. The young vigilante had taken some time to track down, but Bastet was a huntress, a predator. The contract she'd been given had been rather specific: the target, Bridget Greene, was to be eliminated or restrained in some way, and her bow was to be delivered as proof the mission had been carried out. Sanctuary, though a group for "good," didn't seem to care for those they couldn't control, and with her vigilante tactics, Bridget didn't fit their agenda.

And Bastet just happened to have some free time to take on some jobs.

In the dimming glow of the afternoon sun, Bridget was resting beneath a lone oak, back pressed against the warm and rough bark, her bow to her side. She hadn't had to face anyone that day; Bastet had kept a close eye on her activities for several days now. She was likely still in good enough physical condition to put up a considerable fight, if given the opportunity. Bastet, however, was a professional: Bridget wouldn't get a chance to act to begin with. Once the distance between them had shortened considerably, Bastet jacked into Greene's hearing. Twofold, she could hear the wind passing through grass, one set a bit softer than the other from the distance. Next, she jacked into her sight. There was only darkness; it seemed Bridget was currently resting her eyes. The opportunity was a good one.

Activating the blade on her ring, Bastet made a small slit on her right palm. As the crimson liquid slowly welled in her hand, it swirled, expanded, elongated until a crimson blade had formed. Behind her mask, Bastet licked her lips. This would almost be too easy. Moving carefully and keeping a metaphorical eye on Bridget's senses, Bastet made her way to the opposite side of the oak. Taking careful measurement of the distance between them, she elongated her blood blade until it was just the correct length, then pressed it against the tree. Slowly but steadily, she pressed; the crystalline blood slowly slipped into the wood, slowly, ever so slowly. Bastet had always been deceptively strong despite her frail appearance, and her weapons were sharper than glass. To perform a task like this was child's play for her.

Once it was near the hilt, she paused. It would be nearly poking from the other side by now; she was sure she'd measured the distance correctly. Still, she had to be careful. The next actions would have to be done quickly, precisely. Failure to do so would put her at a severe disadvantage against a ranged opponent. Taking a slow breath hidden by her mask, Bastet stabbed through, the blade just barely entering into the side of Bridget's neck. As soon as she felt it connect, she let the tip come undone, revert to simple blood and mingle inside of Greene's bloodstream. Bridget's eyes jolted open, and she rolled forward, bow in hand and a Blast Arrow drawn. Bastet backstepped as the arrow flew forward, knocking the tree towards her. She rolled to the side as Bridget drew back, another arrow aimed directly at Bastet's chest.

"Who are you? What did you do to me?" Bridget was frantic; she'd let her guard down. She hadn't expected anyone to find her out here, or to attack her so silently from behind. This woman had nicked her with something, and it clearly wasn't a normal weapon. Still, she'd prefer to not kill someone if she could help it.

Bastet held her hands up, letting her blood simply drip into the ground, sealing off the wound. She'd done all she needed to do; now, she simply had to wait. Bridget seemed to be growing more and more antsy as Bastet remained silent.

"Answer me, or I'll have to bring you down by force and make you answer!" As she spoke, something felt... off. Her hands were shaking, her eyes blurring. What had she done to her? "You... what did... you... me..." And without another word, she collapsed to her knees, before blacking out, her grip on her weapon loosening. Bastet stretched gently, the masked woman walking over to check on her target. She had been totally incapacitated it seemed. Her plan had worked out well.

Not too long before, Bastet had taken a powerful drug into her blood, one to induce sleep. Having developed a resistance to essentially every drug and poison, both synthetic and organic, it had no effect on her. However, when her blood entered Bridget, the drug began to circulate through her system; her panic only sped up the process. She wouldn't wake for a good time. Picking up the spear, Bastet picked up the archer as well. If she hadn't been caught unaware, and wasn't so soft-hearted, she might've been a serious threat. Now, however, she was nothing but a rag doll. The Masked Huntress gave a small yawn before pulling out her phone, firing off a quick text. All she needed for the job was Bridget's bow; she'd get her payment for a job well done.


Meanwhile, the Night Creatures had a new recruit to have broken in.


“No, that’s fine, just if Serif shows up, please call me back at this number,” The short redhead pinched the bridge of her nose, letting out a sigh as the woman on the other end of the line spoke a few lines, “I suppose you’re right, but at this point, I just want him to be somewhere. Thank you.”

The phone hung up with a soft click before she leaned forward on her desk, light from her computer monitor illuminating the bags under her eyes and untidy strands of hair that her ponytail failed to contain. The coffee cup beside her had long stopped steaming, but as her body begged her for rest, she took a sip of the lukewarm contents. A kiss of sunlight caressed her cheek as the sound of the door opened, but as her green eyes snapped open and her back straightened, an alertness found her.

It died on sight of the arrival.

“Good to see you too?” Her former classmate cast her a small grin while she gave him back a frown. As the man shut the door behind him, the girl crossed her arms. “Okay then. Alex says ‘hi’, by the way.”

“Are you talking in third, or do you mean Beatrix?”

“Well, I mean I guess I do too.”

“I only say ‘hi’ to her.”

“Heh.” It took a few brief moments of Annabelle’s mouth staying a straight line for Alex to realize she wasn’t kidding. “Seriously?”

“What do you want?”

“A room would be nice?”

“I’m at capacity.”

“There are literally three cars in the parking lot. One’s mine.” A mild annoyance found him as he began approaching the desk, “And I assume the other two are yours and your boyfriend’s. He’s got mail, by the way.”

Her eyes narrowed on him, his half-shut. “Tell Alex I didn’t sleep with him, I fell asleep next to him.”

“Riiiiight, because that’s totally different.” He tried his luck with another smirk. Snake eyes. Trying to shake it off, he reached out a manilla envelope with the name ‘Serif Winters’ elegantly written on it, which Annabelle took after a few lingering seconds. “It’s a stupid name, by the way,” He joked as her eyes danced on her desk in search of a pen.

“Does your logo still look like a swastika?”

“It didn’t, but no, I changed it,” Turning around, he leaned back on the desk.

“Then you have no room to talk, especially considering that you chose it.”

“I stand by it being fine. It was just a joined ‘F’ and ‘X’.” Glancing over his shoulder, he could see the redhead wedge a mechanical pencil inside the corner of the envelope. Raising an eyebrow, he drew back her eye contact as she hesitated. “I’m sorry, you’re just going to open that? Pretty sure that’s illegal.”

“It might not be for him.”

“Right, because you know, that name could mean anything. Maybe it’s a downloadable font code or something.”

She glared again. “I’m not saying it’s not about him.” Returning to the mission, her hand shook as she internally tried to justify the possible severe intrusion of a private man’s privacy. “Don’t you have anywhere else to be?”

“A bed, but the service here is terrible.”

“Anywhere else?”

“I’m sorry, did I accidently become a Batman villain?”

“I don’t like drug dealers at my establishment.”

“It was beer in high school, not heroin to kindergarteners.” He let out a sigh while she huffed behind him. Glancing back, he noticed she was still struggling with opening it. “Need a hand? Maybe a hardened criminal like me could help. Pass it here.”

Locking eyes for a few seconds, Annabelle finally caved, returning the mail to the male, who wasted no time before sticking a finger in the exposed corner. Chuckling, he shook his head, but as he slowly started to tear, he just couldn’t resist the urge.

“Mwahaha,” It started as fake a silicone and quiet as a whisper, but Annabelle’s true aggravation made it genuine, growing louder as his embarrassment passed. Halfway through the slow tear he was laughing like a maniac, clearly overacting before he finished the envelope off in a sudden rip before falling to his knees. Arching his back, he bellowed his ‘ahahaha!s’ as loud as he possibly could, giving an exact zero fucks about any other residents.

“Will you shut up!”

Breaking into a real laugh, he shook his head while he stood back up, withdrawing a small stack of papers while the empty shell fell. “Dear Serif Winters comma,” He began in a fake british accent, glancing back between the page and the look of death Annabelle locked on him, “We at Sanctuary would like to formally thank you for your aid in the-” His eyes bulged at the next word and his voice stopped immediately. Paling terribly, his black widow’s peak almost made him look like a vampire. Forcing a cough, he lowered the sheet. “Heh, uh, so you still like bad boys, I see.”

“I can’t stand you, can I?” Her poker face failed her and flashed signs of worry in her eyes while her crossed arms looked to be more uncomfortable than guarded. “Give it here. What’d it say?”

Ignoring the first direction and running with the second, he cleared his throat again. “You ever see that underground area thing in the news? The kidnapping, and then the forced fights against ‘roided up nature? Yeah, that’s not a thing anymore. The host died.”

“Serif…”

“Was involved, yeah. A key player, it seems,” More less skimming by that point, he made intermittent eye contact with the motel manager. “Is he here?”

“No… He’s been missing for about a day now.”

“Then I assume this was what he was up to. It goes on to describe a job.”

“Define ‘job’.”

“Whoever-” Alex paused for a moment, his eyes skipping to the end of the letter for a moment, “Sencarn, wants him to recruit someone. But uh, weird thing is,” Uncomfortably, he scratched the back of his neck, making direct eye contact with Annabelle, anger absent from her, meeting the gaze nervously. “It’s heavily emphasized not to kill this guy.”

“That’s a bad thing?”

“It is when you need to say it! Who the fuck is your boyfriend-”

“-He isn’t.”

“-that this doesn’t go without saying? I mean, fucking shit Ann, who are you in bed with?”

She went to say something, but her voice faltered. She’d been looking at Serif like a stray dog. He attacked when provoked, she saw that, but while he was distant, he always came off as driven, not rabid. The man was lost and hurt and betrayed but… beyond that, she hardly knew anything about him. His name, where he was from and who he was looking for. That was everything.

“Your silence is freaking me out, for the record.”

“Huh?” She shook her head, “I- I’m sorry. Just… thinking. I think I need to talk to him...”

“If you’ve still got that shotgun under your desk, yeah. Otherwise maybe not.” Going back to the middle of the letter, he double checked a detail. “This came from Sanctuary.”

“Sounds like a cult.”

“I think their main deal is that they don’t like the RHG. Isn’t your boy-toy a gladiator?”

And just like that, the agitation returned. “Serif didn’t sign himself up.”

“That’s not a thing that happens.”

“It’s a thing that happened to him.”

“Allegedly,” Sighing while she stood fast, he turned the page, “I haven’t heard much of either side... but I suppose I’ve heard darker ghost stories about the RHG. Sanctuary is just a thing that might exist.”

“And your first thought is still ‘allegedly’?” Walking around the counter, Annabelle joined his side, peering over his shoulder, “It says this guy’s a gladiator.”

“Yeah. And, apparently, a university teacher.”

Both sides were silent for a moment, Alex lowering a hand and beginning to anxiously tap his leg while Annabelle continued reading what could be described as a brief bio for the man.

“Is this the sort of thing your hopeful husband would do?”

Keeping her eyes on the page, Annabelle spoke, “He’s already looking for someone. I doubt he’d make a detour.”

“Think this is a paid job?”

That got her attention. Catching his look and gazing quizzically at him, she squinted. “What are you getting at?”

“I mean, it doesn’t sound dangerous, and the only way to know anything about them would probably be to go inside.”

Green eyes narrowed. “You want to do this?”

“I mean, hear me out. If Sanctuary is bad news, this Wu guy should be smart enough to see it. He’s also a gladiator with RHG connections, so he’d also be able to do something about it, ya know? On the flip side, I’m not super cool with the RHG and the potential for random fights to just, fucking happen, I guess? And for that to be rewarded?” Annabelle hesitated to reply, turning away from him, but when he shifted his body to face her, she glanced back. “And beyond that, let’s be real. Both of us could use the money, sometimes there’s a week between gigs for me, and again, I’m looking at three total cars outside. You need this just as bad as me. So, what do you say? 50/50?”

A long exhale left her as Alex reached out a hand. Thinking it, and looking him, over, her hands slid to her hips. “I don’t trust you. 60/40.”

“Hell no, I live in a car. 50/50 is generous.”

“You bought that car with drug money. 65/35.”

“Booze money.”

“70/30.”

“Are you fucking serious?” Annabelle didn’t even blink. “This isn’t how negotiations work!”

“It is with this. 75/25.”

“...And a free room.”

“For one night.”

“24 hours.”

Hands shook.


: | : | : | : | : | : | : | : | : | : | : | : | : | : | : | : | : | : | :

“I feel like you’re being passive agressive.”

“I think this is the least ‘passive’ I’ve been about it.”

Alex let out a groan as he reclined his seat to the tender cadences of Avenged Sevenfold, Sick Puppies, and every other pending throat-punch type song Annabelle had in her playlist. “Do we have any idea what we’re doing?”

Watching Alex kick his feet up on the dashboard, the motel manager had to look back out the window, waiting for their marks’ class to get out. “Fighting the urge to pepperspray your eyes.”

Crunching fast food wrappers blended with the heavy drums as Alex’s feet returned to the floor. “Winging it then, got it.” Taking a deep breath, the young man unfolded the write-up in his pocket. Worst case scenario, he got his ass kicked by some fancy ice magic. Wait, no, killed by. Actually… died from hypothermia? He winced at the thought, flipping to the picture for a distraction. “Do you think Russians are offended by asian stereotypes?”

“I think you need to not speak at all and literally let me do everything when Ming comes out.”

“Ming Wu. I think in China just the first name would imply-...” His voice trailed at another thought. “Which I guess would be Wu anyway... unless it’s that way now because we’re in a given name then family name society here and just- Dammit! I had a plan for today! Pizza pillows and po-”

“There he is.”

Sitting up suddenly, Alex followed Annabelle’s eyes to see a chinese gentleman walking their vague direction towards the parking lot. His hair looked a little slept in, and he was wearing a pair of black pants and a navy blue dress shirt, buttoned almost all the way to the top, showing just a hint of his white undershirt. Sure but not certain, he double checked the photo before looking up to Annabelle’s glare. “Can you not? His tell is ‘the armor of pure ice that he encases himself in during battle’. He doesn’t have face-tattoos like your booty call, cut me some slack.”

“I’d rather just cut you.”

Rolling his eyes, Alex followed Annabelle’s lead out of the car, needing to take another glance to see that she was smiling forward. Shrugging, he mimicked her before falling a half step back. In only a few strides, their mark noticed them, and once the short redhead caught his eye, she gave a small wave. “Ming Wu?”

“That’s correct,” He smiled back, coming to a stop as the duo did as well, “May I help you Miss…?”

“Lee,” She replied, “Annabelle Lee.”

“And I’m her associate, Bond, J-” Pain exploded from his right shoulder, flinching from the blow before he snapped his eyes on Ann, her fist clenched and eyes glaring. Blinking as they flashed back to sweet upon returning to the professor, Alex rubbed his future bruise.

“Alexander Aas. He’s… a friend’s friend.”

“And what can I do for you my friend, and friend’s friend’s friend?”

Alex glanced at Annabelle as she chuckled. “Can we talk to you about something?”

“Of course.”

“The RHG,” The motel manager interjected, noting as suspicion furrowed gladiator’s brow, “Possibly somewhere private? I’d rather have your real opinions.”

“That depends on who sent you.”

“No one did,” Alex’s smile felt real with the pride of the half truth, “But her boyfrie-”

“He’s n-”

“The guy she sleeps-”

“We don-”

“Slept with once got pretty screwed by them. We just want to know if this is a common thing, and to ask you about yourself.”

Taking a moment, Ming Wu slowly nodded. “You only want to talk?”

“About that, and possibly something else,” Annabelle confessed, “But if you’re happy with the RHG, we won’t even go there.”

With a deep breath, Ming Wu motioned for them to follow. “I do hope you’re being truthful with me,” He stated, eyes falling primarily on Alex, “I’d hate for things to dissolve to violence.”

“Not as much as I would,” The man nervously chuckled. With an unspoken reply, the gladiator led the adolescents back inside of the vast university and through the tall halls towards his classroom as both the adolescents did their absolute best to pretend they’d been to a collage before. The walk was brief, but when the teacher opened the door to his class, it felt more akin to high school. Apparently what he taught wasn’t something that could be lectured well, and possibly was more individually tailored as a result. There was a simple four by five arrangement with the desks, with his larger one up front, nice and tidy with only a binder and computer on it. Whatever was on the vast chalkboard behind him, he must’ve erased before coming out. Following closely behind, they all stopped once they arrived at the front of the room.

“Tell me about your friend.”

“Her lover-” A yelp chirped out of his body as a blow right exactly on the fresh bruise made him hop to the side. He went to rub it, but touching it officially stung. Glaring at his companion, he shut up.

“Serif was entered in the system by someone posing with his identity, and he can’t even access his own information due to that ‘security breach’,” Annabelle solemnly began, maintaining a strong eye contact with the teacher, yet still let her eyes drift on occasion, “He was set up to separate him from the person he was protecting, and it resulted in their kidnapping. Since then, the RHG has done absolutely nothing to aid him with his situation, or even provide him with the details of his entry, so he could as least begin to understand how it began.”

“I heard that he had three battles in one day,” Feeling the tone more condemning than impressed, Annabelle nodded sheepishly, “He’s a violent man, I’d advise distancing yourself from him.”

“He’s just trapped in a corner,” The girl murmured, quickly lifting her voice back up as she followed up, “But is this sort of thing common? Not just shady entries, but leaving contestants out to dry or other… things.” Glancing to Alex to see if he had a better word, he shrugged.

“They’ve been good to me.”

“Not what we’re asking you.” Alex gave a half smile before immediately shying away when Ming Wu faced him. “Not to be rude, but we mean, beyond you. The company as a whole, are they something that you can back?”

“They pay me well and tend to my wounds. As I’ve said, they’ve been good to me.”

It was only a nudge, but where Annabelle touched him caused Alex to let out quick hiss of pain. As he caught on however, the girl dug into her purse, but as Ming Wu expected a bribe to come, his eyes hardened. Seeing a small business card for a motel, however, he eased. Glancing to Alex, he drew one as well, his being for children’s entertainer. “You do magic?”

“I can tell you your card and make you a balloon animal.” Ming Wu’s grin gave him one of his own. “We’re just a couple people with a few questions. We aren’t connected to anyone important.”

“Very well,” Ming Wu nodded, “But I still don’t have much more than speculation. Dark rumors have always shrouded the RHG, but there has never been physical information to prove it. Experimentation, abductions and forced combat are some of the most common ghost stories, but all three are still mere conspiracy theories at this moment in time. It is, however, fact that they do have criminals in their employ, and they’ve protected their gladiators when they’ve been accused of crimes. Your friend, I believe, in included in this, so perhaps you’ll have mixed emotions on it. Even if these myths were proven to be true, the RHG is already too big and powerful for action to be taken, and similarly, many people have no other home besides there, which would cause their displacement. Several of the fighters I’ve encountered are there because they have no other means of attaining the wealth that they desperately need, and once they’re there, they lack a way out or become addicted to the lifestyle.”

“Do you support them though?”

“They’re an integrated part of the world, similar to a casino. There’s immense risk getting involved, but in moderation, if you keep your head low enough, it could be a worthwhile venture.”

“But, hypothetically,” Annabelle inquired, “If there were no more casinos, do you think it’d be a good thing?”

“Casinos bring in a great deal of wealth into their communities. As a motel owner-” Alex’s eyes snapped on her at the word, but she ignored it, “You of all people should appreciate that. The RHG is similar. The cities the arenas are in do very well when shows are being held. The vendors inside make immense profit and toy and clothing manufacturers even see their sales rise. Similarly, crime does tend to rise and vigilant acts become more frequent. Weapon ownership skyrockets and there are plethoras of injuries. Gladiators die, there have been injured spectators, some sources even say some have been killed, and violence is applauded. It has ties to both sins and blessings.”

“And what if there was another option?”

In a heartbeat, Ming Wu became uneasy. Alex cleared his throat, but before he could continue, Annabelle jumped in.

“Have you heard of Sanctuary?”

In an instant, Ming Wu’s gaze hardened and the room dropped a solid twenty degrees.

“What have you heard of them,” Her pace quickened with her anxiety, but she made sure to at least lift her empty hands slowly, motioning for her acquaintance to do the same. “Truthfully, we know next to nothing about them, but what we’d bet, is that what you’ve heard may very well be propaganda from the RHG. North Korea says the US eats babies, don’t they?”

The gladiator was still tense, but the room did regain a bit of heat. Nowhere near the point of breaking even, however.

“No one knows fact from fiction until there’s investigation,” Not wanting to be schooled, Alex’s open palms were also facing the instructor, “You’re smart and capable and they want you with them. If they saw you as a threat, don’t you think they’d send someone violent after you?”

“You have no associates in either Sanctuary or RHG?”

Alex shook his head.

Ming Wu turned to Annabelle.

“Just Serif.”

“Then they tried.” The temperature fucking plummeted. An icy layer was creeping up Ming Wu’s body and the A-Team could see their quivering breaths as the cold made them shiver.

“They gave specific instructions! We have them in the car!”

“And why would I trust either of you?”

“Do we look competent to you? At all?”

If it didn’t calm the gladiator a few degrees, Annabelle would’ve taken offense to that.

“Just… hear them out,” The woman carefully began, “Maybe there’s a good side and a bad side, or at least a lesser of two evils. If you joined them, even temporarily, you’d be able to see which is which. I think they’ve recruited gladiators before?” Thinking a moment, Alex gave a hesitant shrug, “Well if they have, the people before you have seen something in them, and if they haven’t, they’re looking for more brain than brawn, influence than power. Because of those two reasons, you would be a terrible person to cross for them. Your students know you’re a gladiator, and if it was traced back to Sanctuary doing something to harm you, the RHG would have the excuse and a strong enough rally to root them out with everything they have. You’re a pillar of society, and if someone thinks they can change your mind, then they probably have a convincing argument.” Smiling softly as her speaking stopped making a cloud with every word, she added, “If you want, we can take you there now, and if you’re worried, you can call anyone you want, and we’ll drive them as well.”

Ming Wu’s brown eyes danced between the two before finally releasing a heavy sigh. The layer of ice clinging to his body broke as he rolled his shoulders, but finally settling on Annabelle, he nodded. “I’ll follow the two of you there. If I like what I see, I’ll stay.”


“He looks like if GI Joe fucked Barby out of wedlock and gave birth to a serial killer.”

“Come on, Candi that’s…” Annabelle took another look over her shoulder at Serif, who was visibly uncomfortable. The collection of lost clothes the women of the night were able to provide him gave them options, but with a finite supply of makeup, the less showing skin, the better. He still had his old boots, but it looked like the tight, dark blue jeans were crushing him in the worst way, and while there was nothing innately wrong with his white undershirt, the black jacket over it only went down to be level with his belly button. If anything else had sleeves they would’ve skipped it, but it was the best worst option, even if they came up short a few inches before his wrist. They had to cut a pair of socks to slide under his white gloves, but then they had to use gauss to cover the ink on his fingers and thumbs. It was true he no longer looked like Serif Winters, but he sure as shit looked like someone trying to hide from something. “...That’s fair.”

“I meant his face.” With one hand on her hip, the prostitute used the other to motion to the man’s mug with the manila envelope she held. “It’s just one, flat color, just caked on there. It’s not blended with anything, it’s just… Who taught you how to use makeup?”

“It isn’t that bad.” It was. You could pick out the pinkish pantone plasted on the hunter’s head by memory at the hardware store. Natural shadows were the only source of change in color. No blotches, no purple under his eyes and no discernable marks of any kind. It was like he immigrated straight from the uncanny valley.

Candi rolled her eyes in reply, slowly making her way towards the front desk, Annabelle booting up her computer enjoying her final few minutes of being closed while the gladiator leaned on the wall behind her, finishing his cup of coffee before speaking. “Did you learn anything from the night?”

“Malcolm Stanton is definitely who shot you,” The hooker shrugged, “And I got a couple shapeshifter names. Janice and Astor. No last names, no locations. Just the firsts.” Her shoulders bounced again. “Not a bad start though, even if neither seem to be the type.”

“Type?”

“Only heard good things about the later, and the former sounds more like a vigilante, albeit a dark one. Doubt she’d get in bed with kidnappers.”

“And the folder?” Annabelle piped in.

“It’s his.” Nodding to Winters, Candi reached out the file, which Serif accepted after setting his mug on the desk. Sure enough, his name was printed in large, elegant letters, the sight of which made the redheaded manager tense. Eying her oddly, the hunter tore it open, carefully sliding out a couple stapled sheets of paper.

“RHG?” The escort inquired.

“My ‘friends at Sanctuary’.”

“The terrorists?”

“Idon’tthinkthey’reterrorists.”

“They’re definitely terrorists, Ann. They’re killers and kidnappers-”

“What?”

“Sorry Sair, adultnappers,” Candi joked, “They even attacked an arena recently, if I’m not mistaken. A good chunk of their goals do seem to be devoted to ending the RHG,” She folded her arms, “Come to think of it, you’re publicly at odds with them too... Are they trying to recruit you?”

He glanced back at the sheet, quickly skimming the words. “Yeah, it sou-...” His brow furrowed and voice cut off. After a quick pause, his eyes seem to track the same sentence on loop a few times. “No…”

“No?”

“...They want me to catch a cat.”

“They what?” Candi’s mouth opened, but it was Annabelle who made the sound, whirling around to face him. “They sent you this, just for that?”

After rereading the sheet, Serif nodded. “It says they were on the fence about me before Ming Wu, but it seems a task ‘geared to my skillset’.” He paused, only partially due to the name he’d never once heard. “It’s not.”

“Aren’t you a tracker?”

“I carry bolas and a blade, Candi. My clients were a butcher and taxidermist. I have kills, not a collection of pets.”

“You have San-Serif.”

“Well what do they have you hunting?” It took the made-up a moment to notice Candi’s outstretched hand, but still perplexed by the letter, he passed off the back page. It took the woman a single second to see the small photo in the center, eyes bugging instantly. “Oh no, this needs your expertise.”

“I’m a dog person too Candi, but seriously?”

Cocking an eyebrow at Annabelle, Candice merely flipped the page.

“What the fuck is that!”


v^v^v^v^v^v^v^v^v^v^v

At four hours into talking to strangers, baking in the sun and having beads of sweat reveal the stars under his paint, Serif found it hard not to be insulted that the only definitive lead was his bottom priority. Janice was made out to be a myth, Astor had been missing for years, Olivia was a ghost, Malcolm was assumed underground, but Murtle, the fucking animal, could be circled on a map. Was circled on a map. As it happened, one of the bartenders at Cirque De Nuit had heard of a wild beast holed up in a foreclosed house from one of her patrons. ‘Bloodbath’ had been quoted, red source allegedly having been from the feral cats that called it home before the monster.

In his irritation, his arms had been at his sides for the bulk of the walk to the building, only coming undone to catch small game for the hulking creature, and then to carry the dead squirrel in a way that it wouldn’t bleed all over his new clothes. What could’ve been a short down-hill sprint turned into a long walk for the sake of saving energy, but after just over an hour, he finally arrived at what was once a decent home. The white door of the two story building had been completely annihilated, fractured wood splintered all throughout the dining room hall, it’s hardwood floors vacant of all but a slick crimson and mismatched fur. It wasn’t a strange sight, but the hunter frowned all the same, twisting the critter corpse he held by the tail. The sheer brutality of the attack made him sense an animalistic encounter, but the lack of a body made him worry for the beast’s hunger. Going by the photo, Murtle on all fours was as tall as he was standing straight. It could easily eat more than a few cats, and if it’d been here since he’d heard of it… it may be ready to feed again.

Shaking his head, he followed the bloody paw prints, having been in a sprint after the several sets of tiny ones. At the very least, there were a total of four cats, but with the quantity of red coating the ground floor, and three escapees being a conservative guess with the scarlet tracks, six or seven were more likely answers. It was still damp as he stepped in it, finally making it to the stairs, it’s door hanging by a hinge and nearly broken in half as the footprints continued down the stairs, next puddle at the base. Gripping the railing, the hunter slowly descended, soft echo of his feet and the dripping of his squirrel both muffled under what sounded like a snoring lion. In a different context maybe it would’ve been cute, but when he reached the final step and his boots splashed in crimson, his gut tingled around old scars.

Saying the basement was worse than the living room would’ve been putting it lightly. It looked like yesterday there was a carpet, just haphazardly pulled out and it’s fibers left in disarray and so numerous they could’ve been swept into a pile bigger than a dustpan could hold. Maybe some of the fault for that was the occasional chunk of flesh still attached to a patch, or the fact that if he was shot through the heart he would’ve bled less blood than spilled across the tiles. He could barely even see the checker pattern underneath it anymore, little hairs floating along like twigs in a chain of lakes, gradually leading to their maker.

The photo couldn’t have done Murtle justice. Even rolled up in a ball, the tawny beast came up to his belly but with all the splatter, it looked more crimson than orange. Stained canines sprouted out of it’s maw like tusks, and its brown splotches mimicked the most damning of inkblots, like the tortured souls of hell were confined, statically screaming in the coat. Bending down to a crouch, Serif slowly drew his blade as a precaution, eyes squinting as his mouth hung agape. His instincts told him he had a good vantage point of its neck, but his gut told him that if his every adventure ended in blood, people would stop sticking theirs out for him.

Serif’s tongue rose to the roof of his mouth, and after a momentary pause, a click echoed throughout the walls. Snoring stopped instantly; yellow eyes burst open and locked on blue while a low, guttural growl chilled the hunter. He could feel goosebumps crawl along his skin as the beast’s fur rose, despite the red droplets trying to pin it down. It stood slowly, front paws low as its back arched, ready to pounce, but the hunter’s motions beat it to the draw, gently tossing his kill to the killer creature, its razor sharp teeth biting the squirrel in half like it was hollow, scarlet mist blowing into its reddened face as it chewed, crunching bones effortlessly. The knife in Serif’s hand twisted and his heart sped up as it lapped up what remained of the corpse.

Cautiously, the man moved forward, each step painstakingly slow, left open palm leading his way as the right clenched down on his blade, eyes with a steely determination as they stared into death. Heavy breaths rolled out of his body with every movement, but a mere couple feet away, he stopped, slowly straightening his posture. Across from him, he could see the monster’s fur begin to lower, amber gaze eyeing him alertly before it began moving forward, long cutlass like claws making ripples in the fluids below it and scratching against the tiles.

His body was stoic, but when a bead of sweat rolled makeup into his eye, the sudden sting shoved a sharp exhale out between the hunter’s teeth and caused his shoulder to flinch when the beast was just inches away. In a swift jolt, it pressed itself back to its hindlegs to strike, but Serif slammed the agonized ocular shut, fighting his every urge to strike first. His body shook as he battled his instincts, but his left arm gradually extended while his right knuckles went pale from the tense grip on his weapon.

The beast snarled in reply, but the hunter’s remaining eye didn’t falter from its, his extended fingers finally reaching its soaked mane before curving down to its neck, trying his best to ignore as the growling grew louder. Reaching its chin, Serif dragged his fingers along its base, and seeing the head rise and eyes begin to shut, repeated the motion. Sluggishly, Murtle’s growl began fading away, transitioning into more of a purr before closing the final step to Serif, nuzzling its gore covered cheek into the hunter’s chest, which flattened as he let out a long sigh of relief. Looking down, the animal’s eyes were closed as it spread red across his cloth like a paintbrush, and with a gentle smile, Serif’s sapphires traced the pet’s neck and fell on the jeweled leash dangling at its side.

After sheathing his blade, the Hero of New Salem gathered it with his free hand, left gliding back to the top of the big cat’s head, giving its scalp a final few scratches while its tail wagged.

...Maybe today wasn’t a complete loss.

Maybe today was a good day.

And maybe, just maybe...

“Let’s get you home.”

That's what he needed.




Mattock honestly didn’t really have a plan, or well, he doesn’t have a thought out plan anyway, at this point; he’s too nervous to think of what to do. After he sent in his request to Sanctuary for a quick spar he hadn’t really thought about it, nearly completely forgetting about it, until he got an email in his inbox saying that his request had been confirmed. The email didn’t say who had confirmed it, it didn’t say when, in fact, all it said was one ominous sentence. “I will find you”. To say that those words scared the shit out of him, well, lets just say he peeks around corners before he turns them.

Sure he had had contact with Sencarn to some extent before the confirmation, but then he went completely silent on any social media when he messaged him, he was in radio silence to him. Paranoia to say the least of it; In fact, he’s even being keeping his pickaxe close at hand, having it lay in a small backpack he quite recently started carrying for security reasons.

Being the quiet type of guy did him no favors either, since he was unfortunately for his own sanity to quiet to really tell anyone else what was going on. All he could do at that point was chew away his own sanity and in place leave unhealthy paranoia. Which of the sanctuary members would come? He had heard that sanctuary had a bit of a violent reputation when it came to any requests relating to combat, and although his request for “friendly” sparring had been confirmed, whether it does become that is no guarantee.

In fact, on top of the paranoia grown out of uncertainty, there was also the paranoia grown out of the fact that he had only heard rumors about the members of sanctuary and sanctuary itself, he hadn’t even paid attention to them until now, and those did not help his confidence. The rumors ranged from that they were all brutal monsters, to that they were powerful gladiators who had little remorse for those weaker, and even to that they were terrorists trying to recruit members to destroy the city.

So that’s the situation our poor scared Mattock has found himself in, as he slowly tip toes his way down the street home from the Italian restaurant he just ate at. You’d think he would have relaxed more after eating a delicious spaghetti carbonara and even a small pepperoni pizza, but his mind was too filled with paranoia to even relax when consuming some of life’s luxuries, every bite he took of his food he would dart his eyes around the room, checking if anyone was being hostile towards him. Sometimes he would even think he saw someone staring at him menacingly, but each time it would just turn into a misunderstanding on his part.

Of course, him taking a look around every time he took a bite of his food took a long time, so now he was walking down the street in darkness, the only illumination from the sky was the half moon shining dimly in the dark sky. Mattock’s head moved around constantly, checking his surroundings every chance he got as he walked unsteadily down the sidewalk, only lit by the street lights above him, shooting their rays down upon him. He stepped into the center of one of the spotlights created by the streetlights, and as he moved his way to the center; he froze. In another spotlight in front of him he saw a silhouetted figure standing motionless. Despite being a distance form him, Mattock could tell the figure towered over him with one or even two foot taller than him. Sweat trickled down his forehead, his eyes widened as much as they could and he locked his teeth onto each other in one painful move. He would have reacted in a way that any human would to such quick and sudden self-harm, but he couldn’t move in the slightest. His body was completely frozen in place, his body wasn’t even able to twitch, let alone move or even talk to confront the figure.

His body started to shake as the sweat drop trickled down his face, tickling his skin as it dripped off his chin onto the ground, leaving a tiny wet mark in the concrete. No sooner had that happened than the figure started to move towards him. Mattock felt the vibrations of the darkened figure’s steps as it slowly stomped its way forward. Each step it took toward him, he felt his heart beating louder in his chest, vibrating through his whole body as it pumped blood faster and faster. Soon he couldn’t even hear his own breathing as the beating of his heart overpowered all sound.

Soon the figure was barely a meter from him. Suddenly the figure spoke.

“Is your name Mattock?”

The voice was terrifying, it sounded hollow and dark, with a bit of raspy like the figure didn’t have a throat to speak yet did so anyway. Mattock’s mouth shivered open as his words shook their way out of his body.

“Y-yes m-m-my name is M-m-m-mattock.”

“I am your sparring partner”

Mattock just didn’t know how to respond, his fear just forced down any words or phrases he could think of in his head. This thing? This is what he has to fight? It towered over him, as Mattock got a better look of the figure. It had full plate armor on but no helmet, instead on its head it wore some sort of scarf like cloth that wrapped around the head. Mattock quickly forced in a breath as he looked at the creature’s eyes. Piercing through the thin veil of cloth, he could see that there were bright blue flames in place of eyes. Despite them having no pupils, he could feel the flames staring at him, looking deep into his soul. The figure then started to raise its right hand, clenching it into a fist as he spoke once more but this time with a much darker voice.

“I’ll be keeping our match short, so I have a challenge for you, gladiator applicant. I will punch you in your face, and if you can get back up, then you’ll know that you can survive a battle in the RHG.”

Mattock’s heart completely stopped as he stared at the massive fist. He began shaking violently, his teeth clattering in his mouth as he immediately raised his fists close to his face. In split reaction time, he quickly hardened his face with his gold alloy ability and braced for impact.

And in a blink of an eye, everything turned dark.





When Mattock woke up again, he couldn’t say. The figure was gone, and all that was left was the massive pain both on his face and his head, with one of the worst headaches that he had ever felt in his life. Slowly he tried to get himself up but he wobbled, barely able to stand on his feet as he felt his body sway uncontrollably. His memory was fuzzy, in fact, he couldn’t remember much of anything except some images of the massive figure. However, the more he tried to think; the sharper the pain in his skull, forcing him to scream aloud in pain and making him fall to one knee. Suddenly he heard his phone vibrate in his front pocket. His hand shaking as he reached for it, he quickly took it out and saw a message notification. It said

“The answer to your dream is no.”

And with that, our friend Mattock broke down into uncontrollable sobbing.

Kamiroo Wolf
09-05-2017, 09:41 PM
Finished Targets:





Alias: Mattock
Status: Done.
Age: Unknown. Appears late twenties or early thirties.
Height: Six foot even. Approximately 183 centimeters.

Appearance:

An odd looking fellow, the combatant known simply as Mattock is a black male of lean and broad build with shoulder length, dark brown dread locks and matching eyes. His body language borders on that of aggressive, appearing as though he's always ready to pounce with that rusted pickaxe of his. Mattock is always wearing an outfit reminiscent of a peasant from the middle ages, save for the various metal plates over his clothing that serve to protect choice areas and what appears to be a bowler hat with an extremely large brim to protect against the sun(think Kung Lao's hat from Mortal Combat).

Personality:

Mattock is a pretty quiet guy, but an honest person with good values and a positive outlook on life. His whole philosophy runs along the lines of working until death for true happiness, his biggest motivation being his desire to pursue a career he feels passionate doing. According to him, he believes the RHG may be just that: an outlet for him to truly show his skill and even aid the people doing more than breaking rock and stone in the modern age.

Not much is known about Mattock.

Abilities:

Rusted Pickaxe- Despite the appearance, Mattock's weapon of choice is an indestructible tool of war used for both his original occupation and making quick work of those who threaten him. Mattock can be disarmed, but his other ability makes using his Rusteck Pickaxe against him a trying task.

True Transmutation- Mattock has the ability to completely transform parts of his body into a reinforced gold alloy, as well as any other metals he's come into contact with in a 5 minute window. His pickaxe is the only exception to this ability, the weapon always able to be transformed into gold regardless of how long ago Mattock came into contact with it. Gold transformation lasts until Mattock decides he no longer needs the item to be gold.

Miscellaneous- Mattock has above average strength and endurance due to his days working as a miner.

Request:

"I was thinking of joining the RHG recently, but I'd like to test what I've got before I make the official decision. Any takers for a quick spar?"

Desired Outcome:

Assist. Simply help Mattock with his request. How this is done is up to you.





Name: Goes by "Gramma Goodhour"
Status: Done.
Age: Only God knows.
Height: Hard to tell. She's always sitting.

Request:

"I was walking my precious Murtle out in the downtown area when my Precious Pumpkin got free from her leash. I would have gone after her, but these old legs don't have the strength to chase that little critter! Her information is below, and I'd just love you forever if you could get my Murtle back...- oh, and please do hurry. Murtle can be quite a hassle and I'd hate for anybody to get hurt because of me."

Appearance:

It's just a cat, how... wait. Wait. No, wait, what the actual fuck is this?!

Turns out, Gramma Goodhour's "Murtle" is actually some blend between a homicidal sabre-tooth tiger and the very essence of nightmares! This hulking beast covered in tawny fur comes up to a height of 5 foot 8 inches(approximately 176.7 in cm) on all fours and sports intimidating bulk on top of sharpened canine fangs that resemble ancient tusks.

Ha... yeah, this is all you, G.

Personality:

It's a feral fucking beast. Maybe it likes yarn? Perhaps back rubs with a side of warm milk? I don't fucking know.

Abilities:

Physique- Below average dexterity and stealth-capabilities but exceptional speed, strength, durability, stamina, and average intellect for a domestic cat. Its jutted canine teeth(they're sabre-tooth tusks, to be honest) appear to be sharpened, though Gramma Goodhour simply claims to "care for Murtle's dental hygene".

Desired Outcome:

Ok, think of it like this: we kill this cat and we have a crazy old woman at the next anti-Sanctuary rally claiming that we murdered her precious feline companion. Not a good look for us, so find a way to subdue this animal and return it to Gramma Goodhour.

Urako
09-05-2017, 09:56 PM
What exactly would be the due date on these? If you don't mind me asking.

Kamiroo Wolf
09-05-2017, 10:42 PM
What exactly would be the due date on these? If you don't mind me asking.

There wouldn't be any unless you were taking on a Sanctuary target essential to canon(I'd let you know).

Though, if you take months to do a single target and you appear inactive I can't promise your target won't be given to someone else.

Kamiroo Wolf
09-19-2017, 09:09 PM
Double Post, but also an Update)

-Two new High Priority Targets.

-Three new Low Priority Targets.

Just wanted to get some more ACRs on the board.

Crank
10-07-2017, 09:31 PM
“He looks like if GI Joe fucked Barby out of wedlock and gave birth to a serial killer.”

“Come on, Candi that’s…” Annabelle took another look over her shoulder at Serif, who was visibly uncomfortable. The collection of lost clothes the women of the night were able to provide him gave them options, but with a finite supply of makeup, the less showing skin, the better. He still had his old boots, but it looked like the tight, dark blue jeans were crushing him in the worst way, and while there was nothing innately wrong with his white undershirt, the black jacket over it only went down to be level with his belly button. If anything else had sleeves they would’ve skipped it, but it was the best worst option, even if they came up short a few inches before his wrist. They had to cut a pair of socks to slide under his white gloves, but then they had to use gauss to cover the ink on his fingers and thumbs. It was true he no longer looked like Serif Winters, but he sure as shit looked like someone trying to hide from something. “...That’s fair.”

“I meant his face.” With one hand on her hip, the prostitute used the other to motion to the man’s mug with the manila envelope she held. “It’s just one, flat color, just caked on there. It’s not blended with anything, it’s just… Who taught you how to use makeup?”

“It isn’t that bad.” It was. You could pick out the pinkish pantone plasted on the hunter’s head by memory at the hardware store. Natural shadows were the only source of change in color. No blotches, no purple under his eyes and no discernable marks of any kind. It was like he immigrated straight from the uncanny valley.

Candi rolled her eyes in reply, slowly making her way towards the front desk, Annabelle booting up her computer enjoying her final few minutes of being closed while the gladiator leaned on the wall behind her, finishing his cup of coffee before speaking. “Did you learn anything from the night?”

“Malcolm Stanton is definitely who shot you,” The hooker shrugged, “And I got a couple shapeshifter names. Janice and Astor. No last names, no locations. Just the firsts.” Her shoulders bounced again. “Not a bad start though, even if neither seem to be the type.”

“Type?”

“Only heard good things about the later, and the former sounds more like a vigilante, albeit a dark one. Doubt she’d get in bed with kidnappers.”

“And the folder?” Annabelle piped in.

“It’s his.” Nodding to Winters, Candi reached out the file, which Serif accepted after setting his mug on the desk. Sure enough, his name was printed in large, elegant letters, the sight of which made the redheaded manager tense. Eying her oddly, the hunter tore it open, carefully sliding out a couple stapled sheets of paper.

“RHG?” The escort inquired.

“My ‘friends at Sanctuary’.”

“The terrorists?”

“Idon’tthinkthey’reterrorists.”

“They’re definitely terrorists, Ann. They’re killers and kidnappers-”

“What?”

“Sorry Sair, adultnappers,” Candi joked, “They even attacked an arena recently, if I’m not mistaken. A good chunk of their goals do seem to be devoted to ending the RHG,” She folded her arms, “Come to think of it, you’re publicly at odds with them too... Are they trying to recruit you?”

He glanced back at the sheet, quickly skimming the words. “Yeah, it sou-...” His brow furrowed and voice cut off. After a quick pause, his eyes seem to track the same sentence on loop a few times. “No…”

“No?”

“...They want me to catch a cat.”

“They what?” Candi’s mouth opened, but it was Annabelle who made the sound, whirling around to face him. “They sent you this, just for that?”

After rereading the sheet, Serif nodded. “It says they were on the fence about me before Ming Wu, but it seems a task ‘geared to my skillset’.” He paused, only partially due to the name he’d never once heard. “It’s not.”

“Aren’t you a tracker?”

“I carry bolas and a blade, Candi. My clients were a butcher and taxidermist. I have kills, not a collection of pets.”

“You have San-Serif.”

“Well what do they have you hunting?” It took the made-up a moment to notice Candi’s outstretched hand, but still perplexed by the letter, he passed off the back page. It took the woman a single second to see the small photo in the center, eyes bugging instantly. “Oh no, this needs your expertise.”

“I’m a dog person too Candi, but seriously?”

Cocking an eyebrow at Annabelle, Candice merely flipped the page.

“What the fuck is that!”


v^v^v^v^v^v^v^v^v^v^v

At four hours into talking to strangers, baking in the sun and having beads of sweat reveal the stars under his paint, Serif found it hard not to be insulted that the only definitive lead was his bottom priority. Janice was made out to be a myth, Astor had been missing for years, Olivia was a ghost, Malcolm was assumed underground, but Murtle, the fucking animal, could be circled on a map. Was circled on a map. As it happened, one of the bartenders at Cirque De Nuit had heard of a wild beast holed up in a foreclosed house from one of her patrons. ‘Bloodbath’ had been quoted, red source allegedly having been from the feral cats that called it home before the monster.

In his irritation, his arms had been at his sides for the bulk of the walk to the building, only coming undone to catch small game for the hulking creature, and then to carry the dead squirrel in a way that it wouldn’t bleed all over his new clothes. What could’ve been a short down-hill sprint turned into a long walk for the sake of saving energy, but after just over an hour, he finally arrived at what was once a decent home. The white door of the two story building had been completely annihilated, fractured wood splintered all throughout the dining room hall, it’s hardwood floors vacant of all but a slick crimson and mismatched fur. It wasn’t a strange sight, but the hunter frowned all the same, twisting the critter corpse he held by the tail. The sheer brutality of the attack made him sense an animalistic encounter, but the lack of a body made him worry for the beast’s hunger. Going by the photo, Murtle on all fours was as tall as he was standing straight. It could easily eat more than a few cats, and if it’d been here since he’d heard of it… it may be ready to feed again.

Shaking his head, he followed the bloody paw prints, having been in a sprint after the several sets of tiny ones. At the very least, there were a total of four cats, but with the quantity of red coating the ground floor, and three escapees being a conservative guess with the scarlet tracks, six or seven were more likely answers. It was still damp as he stepped in it, finally making it to the stairs, it’s door hanging by a hinge and nearly broken in half as the footprints continued down the stairs, next puddle at the base. Gripping the railing, the hunter slowly descended, soft echo of his feet and the dripping of his squirrel both muffled under what sounded like a snoring lion. In a different context maybe it would’ve been cute, but when he reached the final step and his boots splashed in crimson, his gut tingled around old scars.

Saying the basement was worse than the living room would’ve been putting it lightly. It looked like yesterday there was a carpet, just haphazardly pulled out and it’s fibers left in disarray and so numerous they could’ve been swept into a pile bigger than a dustpan could hold. Maybe some of the fault for that was the occasional chunk of flesh still attached to a patch, or the fact that if he was shot through the heart he would’ve bled less blood than spilled across the tiles. He could barely even see the checker pattern underneath it anymore, little hairs floating along like twigs in a chain of lakes, gradually leading to their maker.

The photo couldn’t have done Murtle justice. Even rolled up in a ball, the tawny beast came up to his belly but with all the splatter, it looked more crimson than orange. Stained canines sprouted out of it’s maw like tusks, and its brown splotches mimicked the most damning of inkblots, like the tortured souls of hell were confined, statically screaming in the coat. Bending down to a crouch, Serif slowly drew his blade as a precaution, eyes squinting as his mouth hung agape. His instincts told him he had a good vantage point of its neck, but his gut told him that if his every adventure ended in blood, people would stop sticking theirs out for him.

Serif’s tongue rose to the roof of his mouth, and after a momentary pause, a click echoed throughout the walls. Snoring stopped instantly; yellow eyes burst open and locked on blue while a low, guttural growl chilled the hunter. He could feel goosebumps crawl along his skin as the beast’s fur rose, despite the red droplets trying to pin it down. It stood slowly, front paws low as its back arched, ready to pounce, but the hunter’s motions beat it to the draw, gently tossing his kill to the killer creature, its razor sharp teeth biting the squirrel in half like it was hollow, scarlet mist blowing into its reddened face as it chewed, crunching bones effortlessly. The knife in Serif’s hand twisted and his heart sped up as it lapped up what remained of the corpse.

Cautiously, the man moved forward, each step painstakingly slow, left open palm leading his way as the right clenched down on his blade, eyes with a steely determination as they stared into death. Heavy breaths rolled out of his body with every movement, but a mere couple feet away, he stopped, slowly straightening his posture. Across from him, he could see the monster’s fur begin to lower, amber gaze eyeing him alertly before it began moving forward, long cutlass like claws making ripples in the fluids below it and scratching against the tiles.

His body was stoic, but when a bead of sweat rolled makeup into his eye, the sudden sting shoved a sharp exhale out between the hunter’s teeth and caused his shoulder to flinch when the beast was just inches away. In a swift jolt, it pressed itself back to its hindlegs to strike, but Serif slammed the agonized ocular shut, fighting his every urge to strike first. His body shook as he battled his instincts, but his left arm gradually extended while his right knuckles went pale from the tense grip on his weapon.

The beast snarled in reply, but the hunter’s remaining eye didn’t falter from its, his extended fingers finally reaching its soaked mane before curving down to its neck, trying his best to ignore as the growling grew louder. Reaching its chin, Serif dragged his fingers along its base, and seeing the head rise and eyes begin to shut, repeated the motion. Sluggishly, Murtle’s growl began fading away, transitioning into more of a purr before closing the final step to Serif, nuzzling its gore covered cheek into the hunter’s chest, which flattened as he let out a long sigh of relief. Looking down, the animal’s eyes were closed as it spread red across his cloth like a paintbrush, and with a gentle smile, Serif’s sapphires traced the pet’s neck and fell on the jeweled leash dangling at its side.

After sheathing his blade, the Hero of New Salem gathered it with his free hand, left gliding back to the top of the big cat’s head, giving its scalp a final few scratches while its tail wagged.

...Maybe today wasn’t a complete loss.

Maybe today was a good day.

And maybe, just maybe...

“Let’s get you home.”

That's what he needed.

Kamiroo Wolf
10-22-2017, 10:49 AM
“He looks like if GI Joe fucked Barby out of wedlock and gave birth to a serial killer.”

“Come on, Candi that’s…” Annabelle took another look over her shoulder at Serif, who was visibly uncomfortable. The collection of lost clothes the women of the night were able to provide him gave them options, but with a finite supply of makeup, the less showing skin, the better. He still had his old boots, but it looked like the tight, dark blue jeans were crushing him in the worst way, and while there was nothing innately wrong with his white undershirt, the black jacket over it only went down to be level with his belly button. If anything else had sleeves they would’ve skipped it, but it was the best worst option, even if they came up short a few inches before his wrist. They had to cut a pair of socks to slide under his white gloves, but then they had to use gauss to cover the ink on his fingers and thumbs. It was true he no longer looked like Serif Winters, but he sure as shit looked like someone trying to hide from something. “...That’s fair.”

“I meant his face.” With one hand on her hip, the prostitute used the other to motion to the man’s mug with the manila envelope she held. “It’s just one, flat color, just caked on there. It’s not blended with anything, it’s just… Who taught you how to use makeup?”

“It isn’t that bad.” It was. You could pick out the pinkish pantone plasted on the hunter’s head by memory at the hardware store. Natural shadows were the only source of change in color. No blotches, no purple under his eyes and no discernable marks of any kind. It was like he immigrated straight from the uncanny valley.

Candi rolled her eyes in reply, slowly making her way towards the front desk, Annabelle booting up her computer enjoying her final few minutes of being closed while the gladiator leaned on the wall behind her, finishing his cup of coffee before speaking. “Did you learn anything from the night?”

“Malcolm Stanton is definitely who shot you,” The hooker shrugged, “And I got a couple shapeshifter names. Janice and Astor. No last names, no locations. Just the firsts.” Her shoulders bounced again. “Not a bad start though, even if neither seem to be the type.”

“Type?”

“Only heard good things about the later, and the former sounds more like a vigilante, albeit a dark one. Doubt she’d get in bed with kidnappers.”

“And the folder?” Annabelle piped in.

“It’s his.” Nodding to Winters, Candi reached out the file, which Serif accepted after setting his mug on the desk. Sure enough, his name was printed in large, elegant letters, the sight of which made the redheaded manager tense. Eying her oddly, the hunter tore it open, carefully sliding out a couple stapled sheets of paper.

“RHG?” The escort inquired.

“My ‘friends at Sanctuary’.”

“The terrorists?”

“Idon’tthinkthey’reterrorists.”

“They’re definitely terrorists, Ann. They’re killers and kidnappers-”

“What?”

“Sorry Sair, adultnappers,” Candi joked, “They even attacked an arena recently, if I’m not mistaken. A good chunk of their goals do seem to be devoted to ending the RHG,” She folded her arms, “Come to think of it, you’re publicly at odds with them too... Are they trying to recruit you?”

He glanced back at the sheet, quickly skimming the words. “Yeah, it sou-...” His brow furrowed and voice cut off. After a quick pause, his eyes seem to track the same sentence on loop a few times. “No…”

“No?”

“...They want me to catch a cat.”

“They what?” Candi’s mouth opened, but it was Annabelle who made the sound, whirling around to face him. “They sent you this, just for that?”

After rereading the sheet, Serif nodded. “It says they were on the fence about me before Ming Wu, but it seems a task ‘geared to my skillset’.” He paused, only partially due to the name he’d never once heard. “It’s not.”

“Aren’t you a tracker?”

“I carry bolas and a blade, Candi. My clients were a butcher and taxidermist. I have kills, not a collection of pets.”

“You have San-Serif.”

“Well what do they have you hunting?” It took the made-up a moment to notice Candi’s outstretched hand, but still perplexed by the letter, he passed off the back page. It took the woman a single second to see the small photo in the center, eyes bugging instantly. “Oh no, this needs your expertise.”

“I’m a dog person too Candi, but seriously?”

Cocking an eyebrow at Annabelle, Candice merely flipped the page.

“What the fuck is that!”


v^v^v^v^v^v^v^v^v^v^v

At four hours into talking to strangers, baking in the sun and having beads of sweat reveal the stars under his paint, Serif found it hard not to be insulted that the only definitive lead was his bottom priority. Janice was made out to be a myth, Astor had been missing for years, Olivia was a ghost, Malcolm was assumed underground, but Murtle, the fucking animal, could be circled on a map. Was circled on a map. As it happened, one of the bartenders at Cirque De Nuit had heard of a wild beast holed up in a foreclosed house from one of her patrons. ‘Bloodbath’ had been quoted, red source allegedly having been from the feral cats that called it home before the monster.

In his irritation, his arms had been at his sides for the bulk of the walk to the building, only coming undone to catch small game for the hulking creature, and then to carry the dead squirrel in a way that it wouldn’t bleed all over his new clothes. What could’ve been a short down-hill sprint turned into a long walk for the sake of saving energy, but after just over an hour, he finally arrived at what was once a decent home. The white door of the two story building had been completely annihilated, fractured wood splintered all throughout the dining room hall, it’s hardwood floors vacant of all but a slick crimson and mismatched fur. It wasn’t a strange sight, but the hunter frowned all the same, twisting the critter corpse he held by the tail. The sheer brutality of the attack made him sense an animalistic encounter, but the lack of a body made him worry for the beast’s hunger. Going by the photo, Murtle on all fours was as tall as he was standing straight. It could easily eat more than a few cats, and if it’d been here since he’d heard of it… it may be ready to feed again.

Shaking his head, he followed the bloody paw prints, having been in a sprint after the several sets of tiny ones. At the very least, there were a total of four cats, but with the quantity of red coating the ground floor, and three escapees being a conservative guess with the scarlet tracks, six or seven were more likely answers. It was still damp as he stepped in it, finally making it to the stairs, it’s door hanging by a hinge and nearly broken in half as the footprints continued down the stairs, next puddle at the base. Gripping the railing, the hunter slowly descended, soft echo of his feet and the dripping of his squirrel both muffled under what sounded like a snoring lion. In a different context maybe it would’ve been cute, but when he reached the final step and his boots splashed in crimson, his gut tingled around old scars.

Saying the basement was worse than the living room would’ve been putting it lightly. It looked like yesterday there was a carpet, just haphazardly pulled out and it’s fibers left in disarray and so numerous they could’ve been swept into a pile bigger than a dustpan could hold. Maybe some of the fault for that was the occasional chunk of flesh still attached to a patch, or the fact that if he was shot through the heart he would’ve bled less blood than spilled across the tiles. He could barely even see the checker pattern underneath it anymore, little hairs floating along like twigs in a chain of lakes, gradually leading to their maker.

The photo couldn’t have done Murtle justice. Even rolled up in a ball, the tawny beast came up to his belly but with all the splatter, it looked more crimson than orange. Stained canines sprouted out of it’s maw like tusks, and its brown splotches mimicked the most damning of inkblots, like the tortured souls of hell were confined, statically screaming in the coat. Bending down to a crouch, Serif slowly drew his blade as a precaution, eyes squinting as his mouth hung agape. His instincts told him he had a good vantage point of its neck, but his gut told him that if his every adventure ended in blood, people would stop sticking theirs out for him.

Serif’s tongue rose to the roof of his mouth, and after a momentary pause, a click echoed throughout the walls. Snoring stopped instantly; yellow eyes burst open and locked on blue while a low, guttural growl chilled the hunter. He could feel goosebumps crawl along his skin as the beast’s fur rose, despite the red droplets trying to pin it down. It stood slowly, front paws low as its back arched, ready to pounce, but the hunter’s motions beat it to the draw, gently tossing his kill to the killer creature, its razor sharp teeth biting the squirrel in half like it was hollow, scarlet mist blowing into its reddened face as it chewed, crunching bones effortlessly. The knife in Serif’s hand twisted and his heart sped up as it lapped up what remained of the corpse.

Cautiously, the man moved forward, each step painstakingly slow, left open palm leading his way as the right clenched down on his blade, eyes with a steely determination as they stared into death. Heavy breaths rolled out of his body with every movement, but a mere couple feet away, he stopped, slowly straightening his posture. Across from him, he could see the monster’s fur begin to lower, amber gaze eyeing him alertly before it began moving forward, long cutlass like claws making ripples in the fluids below it and scratching against the tiles.

His body was stoic, but when a bead of sweat rolled makeup into his eye, the sudden sting shoved a sharp exhale out between the hunter’s teeth and caused his shoulder to flinch when the beast was just inches away. In a swift jolt, it pressed itself back to its hindlegs to strike, but Serif slammed the agonized ocular shut, fighting his every urge to strike first. His body shook as he battled his instincts, but his left arm gradually extended while his right knuckles went pale from the tense grip on his weapon.

The beast snarled in reply, but the hunter’s remaining eye didn’t falter from its, his extended fingers finally reaching its soaked mane before curving down to its neck, trying his best to ignore as the growling grew louder. Reaching its chin, Serif dragged his fingers along its base, and seeing the head rise and eyes begin to shut, repeated the motion. Sluggishly, Murtle’s growl began fading away, transitioning into more of a purr before closing the final step to Serif, nuzzling its gore covered cheek into the hunter’s chest, which flattened as he let out a long sigh of relief. Looking down, the animal’s eyes were closed as it spread red across his cloth like a paintbrush, and with a gentle smile, Serif’s sapphires traced the pet’s neck and fell on the jeweled leash dangling at its side.

After sheathing his blade, the Hero of New Salem gathered it with his free hand, left gliding back to the top of the big cat’s head, giving its scalp a final few scratches while its tail wagged.

...Maybe today wasn’t a complete loss.

Maybe today was a good day.

And maybe, just maybe...

“Let’s get you home.”

That's what he needed.


Holy shit I must have completely missed this. All in all it was a good story, really well written but, then again, that's no surprise. Great work Crank. I'll update the thread whenever I add the new targets.

devi
10-25-2017, 08:07 AM
Had it on my plate for a while, but here it is

Mattock honestly didn’t really have a plan, or well, he doesn’t have a thought out plan anyway, at this point; he’s too nervous to think of what to do. After he sent in his request to Sanctuary for a quick spar he hadn’t really thought about it, nearly completely forgetting about it, until he got an email in his inbox saying that his request had been confirmed. The email didn’t say who had confirmed it, it didn’t say when, in fact, all it said was one ominous sentence. “I will find you”. To say that those words scared the shit out of him, well, lets just say he peeks around corners before he turns them.

Sure he had had contact with Sencarn to some extent before the confirmation, but then he went completely silent on any social media when he messaged him, he was in radio silence to him. Paranoia to say the least of it; In fact, he’s even being keeping his pickaxe close at hand, having it lay in a small backpack he quite recently started carrying for security reasons.

Being the quiet type of guy did him no favors either, since he was unfortunately for his own sanity to quiet to really tell anyone else what was going on. All he could do at that point was chew away his own sanity and in place leave unhealthy paranoia. Which of the sanctuary members would come? He had heard that sanctuary had a bit of a violent reputation when it came to any requests relating to combat, and although his request for “friendly” sparring had been confirmed, whether it does become that is no guarantee.

In fact, on top of the paranoia grown out of uncertainty, there was also the paranoia grown out of the fact that he had only heard rumors about the members of sanctuary and sanctuary itself, he hadn’t even paid attention to them until now, and those did not help his confidence. The rumors ranged from that they were all brutal monsters, to that they were powerful gladiators who had little remorse for those weaker, and even to that they were terrorists trying to recruit members to destroy the city.

So that’s the situation our poor scared Mattock has found himself in, as he slowly tip toes his way down the street home from the Italian restaurant he just ate at. You’d think he would have relaxed more after eating a delicious spaghetti carbonara and even a small pepperoni pizza, but his mind was too filled with paranoia to even relax when consuming some of life’s luxuries, every bite he took of his food he would dart his eyes around the room, checking if anyone was being hostile towards him. Sometimes he would even think he saw someone staring at him menacingly, but each time it would just turn into a misunderstanding on his part.

Of course, him taking a look around every time he took a bite of his food took a long time, so now he was walking down the street in darkness, the only illumination from the sky was the half moon shining dimly in the dark sky. Mattock’s head moved around constantly, checking his surroundings every chance he got as he walked unsteadily down the sidewalk, only lit by the street lights above him, shooting their rays down upon him. He stepped into the center of one of the spotlights created by the streetlights, and as he moved his way to the center; he froze. In another spotlight in front of him he saw a silhouetted figure standing motionless. Despite being a distance form him, Mattock could tell the figure towered over him with one or even two foot taller than him. Sweat trickled down his forehead, his eyes widened as much as they could and he locked his teeth onto each other in one painful move. He would have reacted in a way that any human would to such quick and sudden self-harm, but he couldn’t move in the slightest. His body was completely frozen in place, his body wasn’t even able to twitch, let alone move or even talk to confront the figure.

His body started to shake as the sweat drop trickled down his face, tickling his skin as it dripped off his chin onto the ground, leaving a tiny wet mark in the concrete. No sooner had that happened than the figure started to move towards him. Mattock felt the vibrations of the darkened figure’s steps as it slowly stomped its way forward. Each step it took toward him, he felt his heart beating louder in his chest, vibrating through his whole body as it pumped blood faster and faster. Soon he couldn’t even hear his own breathing as the beating of his heart overpowered all sound.

Soon the figure was barely a meter from him. Suddenly the figure spoke.

“Is your name Mattock?”

The voice was terrifying, it sounded hollow and dark, with a bit of raspy like the figure didn’t have a throat to speak yet did so anyway. Mattock’s mouth shivered open as his words shook their way out of his body.

“Y-yes m-m-my name is M-m-m-mattock.”

“I am your sparring partner”

Mattock just didn’t know how to respond, his fear just forced down any words or phrases he could think of in his head. This thing? This is what he has to fight? It towered over him, as Mattock got a better look of the figure. It had full plate armor on but no helmet, instead on its head it wore some sort of scarf like cloth that wrapped around the head. Mattock quickly forced in a breath as he looked at the creature’s eyes. Piercing through the thin veil of cloth, he could see that there were bright blue flames in place of eyes. Despite them having no pupils, he could feel the flames staring at him, looking deep into his soul. The figure then started to raise its right hand, clenching it into a fist as he spoke once more but this time with a much darker voice.

“I’ll be keeping our match short, so I have a challenge for you, gladiator applicant. I will punch you in your face, and if you can get back up, then you’ll know that you can survive a battle in the RHG.”

Mattock’s heart completely stopped as he stared at the massive fist. He began shaking violently, his teeth clattering in his mouth as he immediately raised his fists close to his face. In split reaction time, he quickly hardened his face with his gold alloy ability and braced for impact.

And in a blink of an eye, everything turned dark.





When Mattock woke up again, he couldn’t say. The figure was gone, and all that was left was the massive pain both on his face and his head, with one of the worst headaches that he had ever felt in his life. Slowly he tried to get himself up but he wobbled, barely able to stand on his feet as he felt his body sway uncontrollably. His memory was fuzzy, in fact, he couldn’t remember much of anything except some images of the massive figure. However, the more he tried to think; the sharper the pain in his skull, forcing him to scream aloud in pain and making him fall to one knee. Suddenly he heard his phone vibrate in his front pocket. His hand shaking as he reached for it, he quickly took it out and saw a message notification. It said

“The answer to your dream is no.”

And with that, our friend Mattock broke down into uncontrollable sobbing.

Can't say its my best work, unfortunately my headaches makes editing an absolute nightmare, so this is the only thing I can make. For now, since no one else has signed up for them, I'd like to request all three of the lower priority targets. If anyone does end up wanting to sign up for one of them, they can have it; I'm not greedy

Chromium7
10-25-2017, 09:29 AM
Dibs on Black Owl.

PitchEnder
10-25-2017, 10:10 AM
I would like to challenge myself and take "Alcatraz". But, if you think that's too intense for me, I could take someone lower on the list like Vincent Copaz.

Aquila
10-25-2017, 10:48 AM
A poker player? Sounds like my tumbler of whiskey on the rocks, I'll get rid of Vincent Copas.

Kamiroo Wolf
10-25-2017, 11:10 PM
Had it on my plate for a while, but here it is

Mattock honestly didn’t really have a plan, or well, he doesn’t have a thought out plan anyway, at this point; he’s too nervous to think of what to do. After he sent in his request to Sanctuary for a quick spar he hadn’t really thought about it, nearly completely forgetting about it, until he got an email in his inbox saying that his request had been confirmed. The email didn’t say who had confirmed it, it didn’t say when, in fact, all it said was one ominous sentence. “I will find you”. To say that those words scared the shit out of him, well, lets just say he peeks around corners before he turns them.

Sure he had had contact with Sencarn to some extent before the confirmation, but then he went completely silent on any social media when he messaged him, he was in radio silence to him. Paranoia to say the least of it; In fact, he’s even being keeping his pickaxe close at hand, having it lay in a small backpack he quite recently started carrying for security reasons.

Being the quiet type of guy did him no favors either, since he was unfortunately for his own sanity to quiet to really tell anyone else what was going on. All he could do at that point was chew away his own sanity and in place leave unhealthy paranoia. Which of the sanctuary members would come? He had heard that sanctuary had a bit of a violent reputation when it came to any requests relating to combat, and although his request for “friendly” sparring had been confirmed, whether it does become that is no guarantee.

In fact, on top of the paranoia grown out of uncertainty, there was also the paranoia grown out of the fact that he had only heard rumors about the members of sanctuary and sanctuary itself, he hadn’t even paid attention to them until now, and those did not help his confidence. The rumors ranged from that they were all brutal monsters, to that they were powerful gladiators who had little remorse for those weaker, and even to that they were terrorists trying to recruit members to destroy the city.

So that’s the situation our poor scared Mattock has found himself in, as he slowly tip toes his way down the street home from the Italian restaurant he just ate at. You’d think he would have relaxed more after eating a delicious spaghetti carbonara and even a small pepperoni pizza, but his mind was too filled with paranoia to even relax when consuming some of life’s luxuries, every bite he took of his food he would dart his eyes around the room, checking if anyone was being hostile towards him. Sometimes he would even think he saw someone staring at him menacingly, but each time it would just turn into a misunderstanding on his part.

Of course, him taking a look around every time he took a bite of his food took a long time, so now he was walking down the street in darkness, the only illumination from the sky was the half moon shining dimly in the dark sky. Mattock’s head moved around constantly, checking his surroundings every chance he got as he walked unsteadily down the sidewalk, only lit by the street lights above him, shooting their rays down upon him. He stepped into the center of one of the spotlights created by the streetlights, and as he moved his way to the center; he froze. In another spotlight in front of him he saw a silhouetted figure standing motionless. Despite being a distance form him, Mattock could tell the figure towered over him with one or even two foot taller than him. Sweat trickled down his forehead, his eyes widened as much as they could and he locked his teeth onto each other in one painful move. He would have reacted in a way that any human would to such quick and sudden self-harm, but he couldn’t move in the slightest. His body was completely frozen in place, his body wasn’t even able to twitch, let alone move or even talk to confront the figure.

His body started to shake as the sweat drop trickled down his face, tickling his skin as it dripped off his chin onto the ground, leaving a tiny wet mark in the concrete. No sooner had that happened than the figure started to move towards him. Mattock felt the vibrations of the darkened figure’s steps as it slowly stomped its way forward. Each step it took toward him, he felt his heart beating louder in his chest, vibrating through his whole body as it pumped blood faster and faster. Soon he couldn’t even hear his own breathing as the beating of his heart overpowered all sound.

Soon the figure was barely a meter from him. Suddenly the figure spoke.

“Is your name Mattock?”

The voice was terrifying, it sounded hollow and dark, with a bit of raspy like the figure didn’t have a throat to speak yet did so anyway. Mattock’s mouth shivered open as his words shook their way out of his body.

“Y-yes m-m-my name is M-m-m-mattock.”

“I am your sparring partner”

Mattock just didn’t know how to respond, his fear just forced down any words or phrases he could think of in his head. This thing? This is what he has to fight? It towered over him, as Mattock got a better look of the figure. It had full plate armor on but no helmet, instead on its head it wore some sort of scarf like cloth that wrapped around the head. Mattock quickly forced in a breath as he looked at the creature’s eyes. Piercing through the thin veil of cloth, he could see that there were bright blue flames in place of eyes. Despite them having no pupils, he could feel the flames staring at him, looking deep into his soul. The figure then started to raise its right hand, clenching it into a fist as he spoke once more but this time with a much darker voice.

“I’ll be keeping our match short, so I have a challenge for you, gladiator applicant. I will punch you in your face, and if you can get back up, then you’ll know that you can survive a battle in the RHG.”

Mattock’s heart completely stopped as he stared at the massive fist. He began shaking violently, his teeth clattering in his mouth as he immediately raised his fists close to his face. In split reaction time, he quickly hardened his face with his gold alloy ability and braced for impact.

And in a blink of an eye, everything turned dark.





When Mattock woke up again, he couldn’t say. The figure was gone, and all that was left was the massive pain both on his face and his head, with one of the worst headaches that he had ever felt in his life. Slowly he tried to get himself up but he wobbled, barely able to stand on his feet as he felt his body sway uncontrollably. His memory was fuzzy, in fact, he couldn’t remember much of anything except some images of the massive figure. However, the more he tried to think; the sharper the pain in his skull, forcing him to scream aloud in pain and making him fall to one knee. Suddenly he heard his phone vibrate in his front pocket. His hand shaking as he reached for it, he quickly took it out and saw a message notification. It said

“The answer to your dream is no.”

And with that, our friend Mattock broke down into uncontrollable sobbing.

Can't say its my best work, unfortunately my headaches makes editing an absolute nightmare, so this is the only thing I can make. For now, since no one else has signed up for them, I'd like to request all three of the lower priority targets. If anyone does end up wanting to sign up for one of them, they can have it; I'm not greedy

Poor Mattock, Jeez. Well, since Gramma Goodhour was just tackled by Crank and Aquila would like Vincent Copas, you've got Irwin "Greenbelt" Taylor. Cheers.

@Chrome

Black Owl is all you.

@PitchEnder,

...well, I would rather you take somebody else, but you'll have to give me a bit to get a second update for this month going(too tired rn). The only characters I've added in this mini-update are Sanctuary Targets. The only reason I ask you to wait on a different character is because I planned to move Mattock, Alcatraz, and a few other non-ACR characters to my list of potential new gladiators(my fault for putting them up here in the first place...)

@Aquila,

Vincent Copas is all you.

UPDATES)

-New Sanctuary Targets. While Sanctuary Targets are open to non-Sanctuary members, they will not be handed out so easily due to Canon. Expect me to meddle a bit, as well.
-All ACR stories done so far added to post under OP.
-Finished Targets added under that post.

This thread 's being updated tomorrow too with better detail for some characters,
New targets, and possibly the removal of some that don't seem to be serving much use.

devi
10-26-2017, 04:36 AM
The only reason I ask you to wait on a different character is because I planned to move Mattock, Alcatraz, and a few other non-ACR characters to my list of potential new gladiators(my fault for putting them up here in the first place...)

Should have thought about that before I broke the dude's face and gave him a concussion.

ErrorBlender
10-26-2017, 05:42 AM
I might have a go at Alcatraz because I want to try something that expounds on why Leikani can be so effective.

Crank
10-26-2017, 06:16 AM
Ida & Ira(reserved for me or Crank if he wants it)Heh, I don't think Serif would be a good choice for this, considering how things ended in my fight with Dex. All yours!

PitchEnder
10-26-2017, 07:27 AM
I might have a go at Alcatraz because I want to try something that expounds on why Leikani can be so effective.



The only reason I ask you to wait on a different character is because I planned to move Mattock, Alcatraz, and a few other non-ACR characters to my list of potential new gladiators(my fault for putting them up here in the first place...)

^^^

Also, gosh diddly darn it Kamiroo did you read the last sentence???



But, if you think that's too intense for me, I could take someone lower on the list like Vincent Copaz.

Posted before Aquila posted. awoefhaoiwdfjoiwefu

ErrorBlender
10-26-2017, 08:13 AM
So, I can't assasinate Alcatraz? So sad. I had a good plan on killing the man.

Crank
10-26-2017, 08:16 AM
Heh, well you can, but not until he's Wolf's main

ErrorBlender
10-26-2017, 08:17 AM
mmm. I shall wait on Kamiroo's take on this if he does want to use Alcatraz as a gladiator. I specifically want to kill Alcatraz just coz of reasons.

Kamiroo Wolf
10-27-2017, 08:03 AM
mmm. I shall wait on Kamiroo's take on this if he does want to use Alcatraz as a gladiator. I specifically want to kill Alcatraz just coz of reasons.

Oh yeah we still haven't fought. Gonna have to change that eventually. If you want you can still fight Mirage, since I can't guarantee Alcatraz will be my gladiator.

PitchEnder
11-08-2017, 07:07 PM
Hey, Kami, is this gonna be updated anytime soon?

Kamiroo Wolf
11-08-2017, 10:20 PM
Hey, Kami, is this gonna be updated anytime soon?

*deep inhale/exhale*

Yeah. I'm just gonna finish transferring Mattock and Alcatraz over the The Proving Grounds, finish up my section there, and then possibly finish my story against Greek if I procrastinate long enough before doing so...