(Again, we shall revel in my teenage originality. Everyone groan in unison.)
Disclaimer: Immortal Wars was the book I came up with and wrote in high school. I hadn’t even hit college by the time I wrote the first two books. That means I hadn’t developed my style yet, wasn’t good at self-editing, and the story was fairly basic. So, you’ve been warned that this is the ultimate author throwback segment for my blog and will show my author origins. FYI- I put the first book (The Summoning) through a Print-on-Demand publisher and the second one (Light, Blood, & Tears) never saw the light of day. Enjoy!
Solix is quietly sitting on the golden chair when the four planet guardians arrive. SEAS is still in his red containment diamond while speaking to the sun guardian about time quickly becoming short. There is a genuine human sense of intense fear and urgency in the computer’s electronic voice.
“What do you want, Solix?” asks Fate as he walks into the room. All four of the young immortals stop a few feet in front of the golden chair and none of them make any moves to sit down.
“At least you’re still willing to listen to me after hearing my secrets. Take a seat at the table and I will explain what is happening,” answers Solix in a weak and tired voice. They impatiently sit in the wooden chairs around the table and wait for Solix to tell them the reason for this unscheduled meeting.
“SEAS has discovered that the evil immortals are building some sort of construct on the far side of Pluto. It rotates into our sensor range once every twenty-seven days. Whatever they are building can be just about anything, except good,” the old man explains.
“Let me guess. You want us to attack them before they can finish their work and attack the galaxy,” responds Miracle.
“Yes. That is the basic plan I wanted to use. The only, and biggest, problem is that the four of you have not trained enough for a real confrontation.”
“So you want to send us on some kind of a suicide run! You’re out of your decaying mind!” yells Fate.
“Fate’s right. How many bad guys do you think we can get through before our heads are removed from our bodies? Now that Fate told us about the original guardians we know that we could actually be killed” mentions Hydrana.
“Honestly, I think you can get through all of them. All of the murderers are on the farthest planet as we speak. I have complete faith in your fighting abilities and your quick thinking skills. Yet, there are two strange events that have me and SEAS very worried and extremely confused.” Solix stiffly gets up and wanders over to one of the stained glass windows, which is a beautiful picture of a golden knight standing in front of a mountain.
“What do you mean by strange events?” questions Infinity.
“Solix is talking about the appearance of a new immortal and the curious change in an old immortal. The one that has undergone some changes is Cybro because his birthright power has been completely eliminated. Only his brain wave pattern and immortal energy emissions are present. How or why this has happened to him is anybody’s guess. As for the new member among their forces, I do not know anything about him or her. But I do happen to know who is missing,” explains SEAS from the red diamond.
“Which one isn’t there?” asks Miracle.
“The one known as Pulsar. Most likely she died during the villains’ voyage home because I cannot find anything to prove that she is still in existence. And she was one that would never stay behind on a foreign planet. For all her evil deeds, she loved to stand in the forests of Earth and watch the sun. But I digress. Even if Pulsar had taken over someone, there would still be some sort of distinct energy signature. But I have not been able to find a trace of it anywhere. I seriously doubt any of the other villains would have killed her because they all feared her. Everyone except Adriana because her pride and ego would not let her fear anyone that was working for her.”
“I hope we don’t run into the thing that killed Pulsar. Any idea about the new immortal’s powers or identity?” says Infinity, who is looking directly at Solix. The ancient guardian doesn’t hear the question and keeps staring off into space.
“I already said no. All I know is that he or she has been around for about seventeen years at most. She arrived around the same time as you, but Adriana has kept her hidden within their warship. The powers and personality of this immortal still remain a mystery. He or she will also have the stolen death scythe that Pulsar took from the original guardians.”
“The stolen what?” asks Hydrana once the word death is mentioned.
“The death scythe of Jupiter is one of the original guardians’ missing weapons. Its magical power is to rip the soul out of anyone or anything that it cuts into. Even if the cut is very tiny, like a paper cut sized mark, the death scythe will kill. I read the data folder on it before I went to sleep last night. Not the type of weapon one would expect a hero to use,” answers Miracle.
“Good for you, tomboy. But I really don’t like anything that causes death. Especially my own,” mentions Hydrana.
“Unfortunately, you will have to learn to live with, and accept, death if you intend to remain with us as the new Neptune guardian. As immortals we live forever and get the pain of watching our loved ones die while we stay young,” states Solix from right behind the red-haired guardian. He had silently teleported behind Hydrana while Miracle was talking about the death scythe of Jupiter.
“You finally decided to enter our important conversation. Well, it’s about time,” says Fate with his back turned to Solix.
“This conversation is over, Edward. I want all of you to go to the armory and get ready for battle. That is, all of you except for the Mars guardian. He stays with me. SEAS will show the rest of you the way to the armory and give you any of the weapons you want. Oh, and I think Hydrana should be given a new uniform. The shirt shouldn’t have any holes in it until after this battle,” explains Solix. SEAS and the other guardians leave while Fate somersaults over to the opposite side of the table from Solix.
“I can see that you really don’t trust me anymore. You think I’m going to send all of you into a death trap,” mentions Solix.
“The thought crossed my mind about thirty times. Do you blame me for not trusting you anymore? You lied about everything,” growls Fate.
“Not everything. I only lied about what happened to the original planet guardians. I told you the truth about the villains and your birthright powers.”
“It was still a very big lie.”
“Fine. I admit that I was wrong in lying to the four of you, but now I need you to do something for me. You owe me for bringing out your true potential.”
“I don’t owe you anything. So, shut the hell up and leave me alone. I’ll do whatever I want and as long as you don’t get in my way, you will be fine. I told you before that I’ll stay, but that I won’t trust your judgement.”
“That’s it! I’ve had it with you! Just drop this childish attitude and listen to what I have to say! During this battle I will have to die in order to save the rest of you! The dreams I have had are clear on this. Do you have any idea what this event would mean?”
“Why should I care about what happens to you?”
“Your stubbornness will help you a lot in the future, but now is not the time to hold a grudge against me. If you will not listen to me then maybe this little gift will help change your mind,” claims Solix. He takes out a long, golden sword from behind his back and touches a small button on its white ivory hilt. A red haze surrounds the blade and a low humming can be heard in the silence. Solix presses it against Fate’s neck before the young immortal can get out of the way. The sound of melting flesh and hissing steam echoes throughout the enormous room.
“What did you do to me!” shouts Fate. He puts his hand to his neck and feels his hand pass over a strange burn mark that the hot blade has left on his skin. From his distorted reflection in one of the windows, Fate sees that the smoldering symbol is that of a blue comet and it noticeably pulsates with power.
“It is a timeless symbol of power that allows the leader of the guardians to use the Solstar medallion for more than an accessory,” says Solix. He removes his cloak’s hood and shows Fate a similar marking on his own neck.
“Why would you give this symbol to me if you’re our leader?”
“It’s good to see that you were listening to me before. I have given you the symbol because you are to be the new leader of the guardians after I die in this battle. Like I said. My death will have many repercussions for the planet guardians.”
“You have to be kidding me. I guessed that you had something big in store for me, but this was definitely not what I expected. I was expecting some kind of nasty betrayal on your part instead of this. I guess you’re not as cruel as I thought.”
“Thanks a lot. Though it is very amazing how an unimportant orphan is destined to become this galaxy’s primary hope for survival and perhaps its greatest warrior to date. Now, do you understand why I did not tell you the truth about the original guardians? I couldn’t take the chance of driving you away from your destiny. The galaxy needs you, Edward.”
“So the entire lying thing was just a way to make sure I remained a planet guardian. I’m flattered, but I still don’t understand why I have to be the new leader. The others have a lot more combat-oriented birthright powers than mine.”
“I’ll stick to the obvious reasons because you won’t understand the less obvious ones until a few years of leadership are under your belt. You have great leadership instincts and the courage of a true warrior. The security cameras in the game room have repeatedly shown this during your group training sessions. It seems to always be you giving orders that the others usually listen to and you are the one making decisions only leaders have to make. The battle scenario against the robot army is a good example. He chose yourself to be a decoy while the others got behind the enemy to destroy them.”
“So the others occasionally listen to me. Why can’t one of them be put in charge instead of me?”
“They each have a tiny personality flaw that, unlike your flaws, can cloud their judgment from time to time. Although your temper must be put in check starting now. Infinity is prone to acting without considering any long-term consequences of his actions. Miracle has a habit of going far too easy on her opponents no matter how dangerous they are. This isn’t always considered a bad habit, but it is not the best way for a leader to act understand these circumstances. Of course try to remember that all of these problem will probably be fixed over time. As for Hydrana . . . ,” explains Solix.
“Stop. Hydrana doesn’t have to be explained. I’ve known her for too many years. But you know that I’m not perfect either,” replies Fate.
“As you know, and keep harping on, neither am I. Leaders are not supposed to be perfect. But they don’t let their flaws stop them from doing what is right. That is mainly why I chose you, Fate. Even with your colorful background of trespassing and stealing, you are currently a very honorable warrior. An honorable thief so to speak. Now, do you accept the mantle of leadership after I die?”
“Looks like I don’t have a choice since I’m stuck with this glowing thing on the neck. Being a leader won’t be easy. Right?”
“It isn’t supposed to be easy, Fate. Leadership is a very big and hard responsibility for a young man like you to deal with. But there is a way that the symbol of power can be hidden from sight. All you have to do is press your finger against it once to make it disappear and press it again to make it reappear. I recommend keeping it hidden. Just so you aren’t made a bigger target in the upcoming battle.”
“I just do this?” asks Fate as he presses the blue mark. It disappears under his skin, but Fate can still feel the pure energy that is steadily ebbing into his body.
“Exactly. Now, there is still one more item that you must gain to truly be the guardians’ new leader. And you will not like the only way to get it.”
“What is it and how much pain will I have to deal with?” Fate starts playing with the tattoo and finally sits down in the golden chair. Solix shoots a glare at him and Fate jumps out of the seat to stand next to the older immortal.
A big smile crosses Solix’s face before he says, “This is an item that the evil immortals stole from your predecessor. I am talking about your planet’s magic weapon. You need it in order to truly assume your leadership responsibilities.”
“So, who exactly do I have to go through to get my weapon? Please say Hellax because he seemed like an easy target.”
“Your weapon is the sword of light and last I checked, Draveon is the immortal who uses it. I believe you read the rather limited data folder on him.”
“I did. He’s the walking mountain with a brain. Can’t we just make a new sword of light instead of sending me up against him? It would be a lot less painful. I don’t need a trail by fire to become the new leader.”
“Another one is impossible to make in this day and age. Now, come on. We will have to use one of the space skimmers to get to Pluto,” says Solix as he starts to teleport himself and Fate out of the Main Hall.
“Use one of the what?” whispers Fate. His question goes unanswered as he disappears in an amber flash of light.