Friday, December 28

Chapter Seven

All that could be heard was the roar of the crowd. Men among men bashing the ends of their weapons against the ground in rhythmic beats. Feng had the best seat in the house, well in fact the only seat.  He grinned with a playful wink before eating some more soup. He very much enjoyed the soup. Nothing like a hearty meal. And the pieces of beef were cooked to perfection. He ate the first piece of wet bread before pushing the second in. He took a sip of the juice and savored the sweetness, but there was something missing. A certain ingredient that wasn't present. It displeased him greatly, for the potato's he requested was either ignored or forgotten. Casually he signaled Mardling to approach him and right away he does. "You forgot something...." He said.


"Forgot w-what?" Mardling voice twists into gargling as soon as he finished his question. Feng had stabbed him right in the neck, causing blood to squirt out.


The only reply Feng had given him was a quiet whisper of,  "Potatoes." Then he pushed the body off to the side before pouring out the rest of the soup contents over Mardling face. 


At the age of sixteen, Feng had become the leader of the Blood Pack. He was the first to stand up against the nobles. Due to this action, his betrothed was taken away from him. He went after her but unfortunately only found her head. Idly he scratches at his dark red bandage which ties back his short feathered brown hair. The mark of his clan is tattooed on both sides of his cheeks. He wore a bronze tattered vest which had sleeves, but not any ordinary sleeves. They were tied together with bones of his victims. Then rugged hide pants which are also laced with bones. Although he owned a pair of boots, he never chooses to wear them. Curiously he flicked his tongue over Mardling blood now staining his hand. His curiosity was cut short by the oncoming announcement of  " the Father and Son Reunion Brawl." In his sight down below stood an ex member Sinner and on the opposite side there was Fenix; still restrained to a pole. His blood began to pump even harder from the anticipation.


Out of no where Sinner asked, "You call this a brawl? He can't even defend himself!" He knew if he sided with Fenix. They would be both dead no matter what. If he decides to kill Fenix, he would be welcomed back into the pack with open arms.


The sounds of the crowd is what finally woke up Blazerine. However, her awakening wasn't quite as pleasant as one might think. She shot upright, gasping for breath as though she couldn't breathe. Her head kept turning left to right, trying to make sense of her surroundings. There she was back in that pit and Sinner was no where to be found. Briefly a moment passes before she hears, "The only game you've been catching lately are rabbits. Let's just say the odds are now even." Feng sneered. "Where does your allegiance lie now Sinner? With the bastard child you left behind or me?" He asked.


Blazerine eyes widen with the expression of shock. Sinner was Fenix father? That explains why he acted the way he did towards him. But would he do it? Would Sinner kill his own son? She wasn't going to stand around here and wait for the answer.  What could she do to get their attention though? Screaming like last time didn't really do anything. Well other than getting punched in the gut. Wait.. wait just a minute   Just maybe, it has to work, a riot would be enough. Although getting her ass kicked doesn't really sound that all great, but its the only option she's got right now. (HERE GOES NOTHING!) A horrifying scream escapes from her lips as she charges the biggest guy among them. A mixture of adrenaline, fright and even excitement is now coursing through that body of hers. Drawing in closer... and closer. The man extended his arms out right before she made contact with his body. It was just in time to grab her and throw her back in the direction which she came. She was flying, flying right through the air. A dismay grunt left her lips as she impacted a few others, knocking them down with her. It hurt, but it wasn't enough to keep her down.


Grinding her teeth, she yelled, "Come on is that all you GOT!?"


Feng was growing impatient with Sinner since he has yet made a move. Briefly for a moment he turned his head after overhearing yelling. "Bring a few feisty ones to the pit." Excitedly he bitten his tongue.


Cado threw the door open just in the nick of time to witnessed Blazerine beating someone senseless. She's sitting upon a man chest and was unleashing her inner pain unto his face. She punched his face with everything she got. Once, twice... a third time! Blood was spewing from his broken nose. The sight of blood didn't stop her, if anything it encourage her to do even more. Not only she was screaming, she was laughing, actually laughing hysterically at what she had done. Hurting him felt good, so good. He wasn't moving at all at this point. Was he unconscious or dead? Who cares... all that matters now is who she was going to get next. Soon she arises, standing above her victim. Her entire body was shaking, but it wasn't fear that shook her. It was nothing but the thrill of the fight. Nothing but pure blood-lust drove her mad. Her stomach growled. Ugh, when had she eaten last? She struggled to remember, but ends up blowing it off swiftly. There was no time to be thinking about that. Her eyes scrolled around the pit. Everyone else backed off from what they could only describe her as, a wild animal.


Slowly she turn her head toward Cado and said, "Wanna play with me?"


Cado laughed, "I'm going need a hand with this one"


"Just as I expected... you're a coward." Blazerine made a smile that looked awfully creepy.


Cado drops into the pit to continue their conversation face to face."Oh you don't say?"


Blazerine notices the rope ladder being lowered behind him. One, two, three... there was three of them. Three bandits climbing down the rope ladder. Although she's now outnumbered, for some reason it doesn't concern her. It's just more toys to be played with. Cado orders the others to stay put before taking a step forward. He was watching her every movement and she did the same. Who was going to strike first? Would it benefit the one who makes the first move or would it simply just be an easy opening for the taking. He made the first move by charging straight at her.  Once's he's close enough, He stops to brace his right foot against the ground in front of him. Screaming, he sends his fist sailing down for her shoulder, relying on his weight in addition of his own strength for momentum. She tenses her shoulder to absorb the shock of the strike, but the collision of his fist meeting her shoulder still wasn't pleasant. It hurt, it hurts really bad. Unlike her last opponent, he's quick on his feet. Instead of being awfully slow from his bulky stature  However this move leaves the left side of him open. She went for it with a jab, jab, jab, cross. Jab, cross, hook and an uppercut sent him plummeting.


 It's obvious the fight was in her favor, but none of the other bandits dared to step forth to help to Cado. Was it some code of honor or maybe they were afraid to face her. No, the look on the other bandits faces said otherwise. All of their faces simply read disappointment. It didn't matter to the rest of the prisoners. It was just an opportunity that couldn't be wasted. Voices stirred as they unexpectedly threw themselves at the bandits. In reply the bandits raised their weapons, which consists of a spear and two swords. A few in front were either going to get hurt or die right away. They can't take all of them on, one of them exclaimed.


Blazerine watched several men fallen into their own pool of blood. The fight lasted not even minutes. The bandits were no match against this many. To her surprised the man who she had beaten his face in, approached. He stood in front of her and just stared. No words were exchanged between the two. It's almost as if he understood why she had to do what she did. It being a desperate act of stupidity or a noble act of bravery. Looking surpass him, she yelled, "Grab whatever you can salvage off their bodies!" The prisoners looked back at her then followed exactly what they were told. Wait... why was she giving orders? Where did it come from? When did she become a leader, an actual leader. I guess it doesn't matter. Somebody has to take charge of this rebellion. Immediately she made her way over to the rope ladder and said, "Everyone stay here until I give the word, alright?"


One of the prisoners asked, "Just who are you anyway?"


"Is that a noble?" Another one asked.


She turned back momentary and replied, "They call me Blazerine." With that said, she settled her right foot on the first plank and grabbed each rope that's tied on both ends. At a steady pace she made her way to the top, but stops. Her eyes peer over the edge to investigate what is happening above. From what she saw, the bandits were quite occupied with the pit they surround.


"What's going on?" A prisoner called up to her.


She suggested, "We need to attack while they're distracted."


"What are you STUPID? We should be taking this chance to sneak out!" He disagreed.


"You honestly think all of us can sneak out of here unnoticed?" She snaps back. Then her eyes shift elsewhere, trying to see if there's another possible solution. What would be their best bet? Only four of the prisoners were now armed. It's pretty obvious they are not going to be enough. At this very moment her stomached growled again. This is when she felt her eyes hungrily lingering at one of the camp fires. Although there wasn't even anything being cooked. Then suddenly an idea crosses her mind. What if they could use the logs? The bandits have only been using them merely as seats. Carefully she climbs back down the ladder and announces, "This is what were going to do!"


-------


Fenix stare was locked onto the man he had once called father. The faint glow in his eyes grew even darker. A few dark clouds rolled in against the bright sky, dimming things down a bit. He could only hope maybe a drop or two would splashed on a few of his cuts to relief pain.


In Sinner eyes Fenix wasn't that immature kid anymore, quite frankly he was in fact a man. Right there and then... a flurry of emotions arises within him. An onslaught of memories he surely thought had been suppressed, from the very depths of his mind forever. It felt like it lasted a life time, but in reality it was just brief moment. A brief moment which was broken by the horrifying cries of men all around him. Bandits were falling down into the pit by the force of rolling logs ignited in fire. The ones who weren't are running straight into a heated battle against the outraged prisoners.




Blazerine screamed at the top of her lungs before lunging herself toward the first bandit aligned in her sight. Drawing closer... and closer... only to discover he's holding a large stick. Without thinking, her hand moves to his wrist. She uses her elbow of her free hand to smash it dead center in his face. He drops unconsciously over onto the ground.


"Get her!"  Two other bandits bellowed as they came charging her way. Both of them were running almost at the exact same speed.


 Surely they were going to try to ambushed her. What should she do to encounter this? There wasn't really enough time to make any rational decisions. The only thing near her to grab was the weapon from the fallen bandit. She grabs a hold of the stick and snaps it into two halves over a knee. Quickly she threw both of them towards the incoming bandits. Of course she knew it wouldn't do any damage, but it was a good distraction. Blazerine launched herself at the man who held the dagger. Her teeth harshly dung into the hand that wield it, causing blood to trickle down between his knuckles.


In response the bandit screamed, "Bitch!" When he kicked her away, she didn't go alone. A nice hunk of flesh was spatted out off to the side. As soon as the dagger hits the ground, her hand snatches it. She then sprung back up to her feet and went for the other bandit; who was now so scared of this woman. He threw out a punch in fear, hopping his mighty swing would catch her, but it didn't. Blazerine ducked in the nick of time and immediately stabbed his foot. He screamed out while falling down onto one knee. As she rose, she swung herself just enough to slash his jugular in one go. It would be a matter of minutes before he bleeds out and dies.


Blazerine now covered in blood kept moving on until she found an hatchet that the bandits seemed to use for cutting wood. With her free hand she grabs it and moves on. While running she overhears a bandit yell, "Get HER!" He was now running after her, along with two others. Without hesitation she turned around and threw the dagger with all her might. She didn't actually expected to hit a target, but she did. The second bandit got nailed right in the eye socket. If it had been any bigger it probably would of have killed him instantly, it being evident to him dropping on the ground without as much of a sound. Well expect for the thud his body made.


A bandit ran back to prepare his bow and arrow while the other one kept her busy. That's until he notices she holding an axe. Although it didn't matter once she stopped him with a wild swing. His throat was cut without much effort, thankfully it was sharp enough she thought. Before his body was able to make any contact with the ground. She rammed his body to shield herself from the oncoming arrow. Haste-fully he aligns another arrow in his quiver, but it was too late. The last thing in his sight he saw was an axe merely inches away from his face before cutting through him. The axe pinned whatever left of his head to a tree.


"Perfect, just PERFECT!" She thought out loud. She saw a dead bandit, lying with a blade. At least knows a thing or two when it comes to those.


There was no time to lose, Blazerine ran straight for it and grabbed the blade. However what she saw made her lose all hopes in her escape plan. There were about fifty bandits, wielding a different variety of weapons from maces to clubs. but suddenly she heard, "It seems one of our little birdies is trying to escape." An opening was made for their leader to step forth. He walked toward her in a calm and collected manner.


(Blazerine: Apparently being in charge of these bastard made his ego sky rocket over the years.) She readied her blade. As if to say I'd rather die than be his prisoner.


The leader chuckled in a cocky manner. Then he lifted his hands into the air and said, "Haha, you got some spirit. Tell you what.... You defeat me and I'll let you and the friends go free." The other bandits busted out laughing at the mere thought of it.


(Blazerine: It seems that their fearless leader has never lost... yet.)


"What's the catch?" She asked.


He smirked. "Oh, seems you do have a brain. The catch is if you fail, we'll put you and your friends against each other in the arena as planned. And I hope it's you. How else can I have a feisty maid for my chambers?"


Blazerine outrageously yelled, "All right then, come on you fucking asshole!"


"Asshole? No, no, no, the name is Feng." He walked toward her now, unsheathing his jeweled en-crested curved blade.


"Such a fancy blade. Are you trying to indicate something?" Blazerine laughed.


The bandits circled them in as they walked in their own to size each other up. Yells were heard of, "Slash the bitch!" Some even howled, "Fuck her up boss!" Feng smirked in response of their encouragement.


Blazerine stood her ground as Feng lunged himself toward her while slashing in a curved arc right.  She raised her own weapon just in time to deflect his attack. His movement was fast! It seems the leader title wasn't all for nothing. He actually had something to show for it. How unlucky she thought. All the while he was still smirking, almost as if it had been stapled right onto his face. His next action was a bit odd to her. He lifted his leg and kicked dirt. She understood what he had done after dirt was caught in her eyes. Wait...her eyes? But what about... Then he swung his hilt while she was temporarily blinded. She was knocked back into a sitting position. And lying in front of her was her pair of tinted blue sunglasses. It mustn't had been only dirt. Perhaps a pebble..or maybe even a rock. "Dirty bastard..." She mumbled while rubbing her eyes. Feng didn't hear a word of it. He was too busy bathing himself in the praises of his men. But then there was a sudden silence.


Feng stared at her before bursting out into a hysterical laughter, saying, "You've got the black mark of death!" That single sentenced stopped the battle between the prisoners and bandits in mid flight. Although most were beginning to fled the area. He stood his ground and locked his eyes upon her black ones. "Finally I get to face the death that I've had longed for." He delightfully smiled.


Blazerine no longer had much confusion over what the black mark of death meant anymore. It must be some kind of disease that has similar symptoms with the virus she in fact carries herself. She's guessing one of differences between the two is that hers wasn't contagiousness. For whatever reason there may be. The prisoner she had beaten senseless stood near by and said, "She had nothing to lose." The words he had said bothered her greatly. She wasn't exactly sure why, but it did.


"Come on... stand up my little raven." Feng spoken in a soft manner.


Blazerine arose once again for the occasion with a readied blade. He tried his dirty trick again with the whole kicking dirt. She moved her blade to shield her eyes and said, "It won't work twice." Soon as the dirt met the blade, she swung in a circle towards him. Seeing in time he mandaged to stop back away, but it wasn't enough since it grazes his stomach.


Feng looked down to inspect the cut. "You're finally putting those talons to use now." He stepped forth and swung faster than before.


Blazerine couldn't believe how quick this bastard was now. He was holding back the entire time. He was merely just playing with her! Luckily she deflects his blade, but the impact was really rough. Being a woman she was at a disadvantage in terms of strength. His blade swiped once more and this time it was towards her left. She barley deflects it again. Then a slash  came which is meant to cut her in half. She didn't think and just reacted by kicking dirt in his eyes. He began to rub them furiously, trying to get back into combat. Unlike him she didn't waste time and lifted her leg to kick his face, snapping his head back. She then slashed downward towards him but he managed to block it with his own sword and began to over power her as he rose. Blazerine wasn't going to give up that easily. She tried to over power him back by using her entire body, along with the sword. This made him step back to collect his footing and that was when she used this opportunity to land a solid kick between his legs.


"You fucking bitch!" Feng cried while falling to his knees. He dropping his blade as he wiggled back and forth in pain.


Blazerine tossed her blade aside and grabbed a hold of his. She mockingly said to him, "Bitch? No, no, no, my name is Blazerine." Then in that very moment she sliced his neck clear open from one side to another. He fell back and gargled words which couldn't even be made out. Whatever it was, it didn't matter to her. She just stood there above him, watching him squirm until he had completely bled out. When there was nothing left to be seen. The blade falls from the grasp of her finger tips. All that was running through her head now is the thought of how the others are going to react. Gradually she looks to the right and sees Sinner helping Fenix along.


Fenix spoken out of nowhere. "No...I want to walk the rest of the way by myself."


Blazerine didn't understand his request at all and neither did Sinner from the look he was giving. Fenix was weak and barely could even walk. Why did he insisted so much? Slowly but surely he approached, but he didn't even bother to look her way. What was he doing? Then to her surprised Fenix had leaned down to pick up her sunglasses. He didn't say a single word, but he didn't have to. His actions spoken everything that needed to be said when he placed them back onto her. She latched onto him as tears began to flow.


He softly patted her head before saying, "I'm still naked, you know."


"Shut up!" Blazerine cried.


Fenix not only felt injured, but he felt odd. It was an odd feeling being set free from the pole and yet not fully for he was re-born, not only as how he was before but anew. He wasn't sure at all how to act now that he has a family once again. The only other person he's ever relied on was Leon and now perhaps Blazerine. Regardless it left a lot of lingering questions. Ones he wasn't sure whether or not he should ask. Right now wasn't the time for any of this though. They needed some rest after this whole ordeal. He and Blazerine ended up sharing a tent and slept for a few hours. Sinner waited nearby just in case if there are any unsafe straddlers lingering about.


Despite Fenix time asleep, his body was not stiff nor was it fighting for him to get anymore rest. Slowly he sat up to push the fox pelt aside. Looking down he realizes his wounds have been dressed with tree sap. The sap becomes a stick tar-like substance when it is boiled. The astringent qualities in it help keep the wound from getting bacterial infections and also promotes healing. He looked over to his right and saw  curled up inside of a wolf pelt. From a closer examination he realizes she was asleep. Although he's not exactly sure how she can sleep so comfortably in a defensive position like that.


"Feeling any better?" Sinner asked as soon as Fenix stepped out of the tent. He also tossed over some of his belongings he had found.


"Yeah." He answered while getting dressed.


Sinner was just sitting little ways from him at a newly lit camp fire. He was cooking up whatever he had found lying around. "You know... it's crazy to say this, but that little missy saved our hides. I never knew she had it in her." He laughed.


Fenix walked on over to him and said, "Yah it's like she becomes a different person in the heal of battle."


"She seems to despise you greatly from what I've seen." Sinner mentions.




"I think I understand that gal a little better now. She does mean well... it's just.... she has a different ways of showing affection." Fenix replied.


"Ah... I see. But still she was there for you when I wasn't." Sinner said rather bluntly.


There was a suddenly silence between them after his statement. Sinner was starting to feel more guilty than ever. Nothing he could do now would ever make up for the sins of his past. His eyes kept on the broth he stirred. Watching the bite size pieces of boar meat move from the motion of his stick. Eventually suggested Fenix to go wake the girl since the food was almost done.

 Fenix didn't actually say anything back, but he did go to get Blazerine. He pushed through the opening and made his way over to the little bundle of pelts.


"You decided to be greedy once I got up, huh?" He chuckled. Then he nudges her while teasingly saying , "Wakey, wakey Blazey time to eatty." The most reaction he got out of her are unclear responses being mutter during her slumber.  When that didn't work. He yanked back the pelts and tossed them aside. He wasn't sure what to think after he saw her arms protectively bracing the front of her face.  Fenix thought she was desperately trying to ignore him.  "You can't block me out forever gal!" When he tried  grabbing a hand, she ended up curling it entirely around his index finger. The action wasn't forceful in the intentions of trying to hurt him. To him it was like a child trying to hold onto a fatherly figure.  He leaned closer to examine her face and realized she was still dead asleep.


"Hurry up, ya'll don't want it to get cold now!" Sinner called out.


Fenix wasn't sure what to do in this situation. The only thing he could think of was to...  he punched her upside the head then fled from the tent. Quickly he scurried over to Sinner for his helping of food.


"How yah feeling?" Sinner asked once Blazerine came staggering out of the tent.


"I have a splitting headache." She stammered.


Sinner held out a bowl of boar soup and said, "I've prepared a meal for you to eat."


"How do you expect me to eat when I'm covered in the stench of blood?" Blazerine frowned.


"Shouldn't you be used to it by now? Considering you being a girl and all." Fenix shot her a sly dog grin.


Blazerine eyes wander about as she replays his statement in her mind over and over. If anything it made her head feel worse. It did take a few minutes for her to realize what he had meant. "Fenix that's disgusting..."


Blazerine didn't find his vulgar humor funny, not at all. Unlike her, Sinner was laughing his ass off.  It was really to a point where he couldn't formulate a single syllable properly. So instead he just points over at a bucket nearby. Quickly Blazerine headed towards it. She puffed out her cheeks a bit to conceal her-self from saying what's truly on her mind. Especially when Fenix burst out laughing him-self. It made her feel even more irritated than before.  The bucket turned out to be filled half way to the top with water. It looked clear, but there wasn't really any way for her to tell if it's actually sanitary. Whatever the case is.. she really did not care at this moment.  She cupped her hands together and scooped right in to retrieve some. Repeatedly this method was done in order to keep splashing water against her flushed cheeks. Eventually her clothing was soon to follow.  As hard as she scrubbed her trench coat. The stench of blood wouldn't seem to go away. She wanted it gone no matter what. It would be a constant reminder of the lives she had taken. But she knows deep down inside... she enjoyed it.. ever last second of it. What was she becoming? Is the person she once so long ago? It really did feel almost like an instinct.


"What's gotten into you gal?" Fenix said while peering down at her.


Blazerine lifted her head to look directly at him. "Huh?" She asked.


"Your hands are going to end up raw if you keep that up." Fenix replied.


"I don't know what else to do." Blazerine shrugged.


"I've seen this... I know that look." Sinner began. "You've never killed anyone before."


Blazerine tried her best to just ignore him and continued to scrub her trench coat. But her movement ceases once a hand is placed upon her shoulder.  He was telling her to stop without even saying it. She wasn't used to him being concern about anything she does. It's going to take a very long time to get used to it. Well if she ever does manage to adjust to it anyway.


"Good, now all you have to do is take off your clothes now." Fenix said.


"W-what!? How can you even say that with a straight face!?" Blazerine angrily snapped at him.


"I think he was going to suggest washing your clothes in some boiled hot water." Sinner explained.


"Oh..." Blazerine nervously laughed.


It only took her a couple of minutes to get undress inside of the tent. Although she's not sure if this is exactly the greatest idea.  Her eyes aren't the only thing infected with abnormality. In general veins function to return deoxygenated blood to the heart. But hers weren't completely filled with just blood. The virus was running through hers. It was quite an ugly sight. Why she usually wears gloves.  The veins could easily be seen through the surface of her skin. Especially now that they're the color black. At first it was just her hands, but now even her forearms looked hideous.  It must be spreading even faster now that she has nothing to help suppressed it anymore. The most she could do right now is cover herself up in a fox pelt. The only thing other thing she had on was her sunglasses.  When she stepped out from the tent. She could see Sinner was already working on boiling the water.


"Does it hurt?" Fenix asked. He was just standing to the left of her. His intentions wasn't to startled her, but it ended up that way regardless.


"What does what hurt?" Blazerine felt confused by his question.


"Your arms..they look..." Fenix swallowed rather harshly.


"Y-you were watching me?!" Blazerine cried. In that very second she smacked him upside the head, but by doing so... her pelt fell to the ground. In almost a blink of an eye she leaped back into the tent and buried her-self in a pile of pelts to hide.  As well hidden as she was. It didn't really fool anyone, not even that stupid Fenix.


"You're a woman... and I'm a man. Look it's just the way things are. I mean... I'm pretty sure anyone would do yah without any candles lit." Fenix protested.


"If this is your way of apologizing then you're outta' your mind! In fact this is the dumbest way possible for anyone to apologize in fact." Blazerine couldn't help but whine.


"If there's anything I can do for yah just say so... you know." Fenix mentioned before letting him-self out of the tent.


Blazerine tucked her head down further into the pelts and whispers, "It does hurt..." She didn't move from that spot until her clothes had been returned. She doesn't know exactly how long the whole process had taken. For her clothes to be boiled then hung up to dry in the sun. Whatever amount of time it was, it felt like forever. She left the tent as soon as she was fully clothed. Sinner was standing there, holding the weapon that the bandit leader once wield.


"I think it will be most appropriate if you hold onto Feng blade." Sinner said. He continued before she could even refuse his offer. "You must carry this blade to ensure others know of your heroic acts. You've not only freed us, but all of them... All of them who were forced to fight beneath Feng ruling."


"But I..." Blazerine began.


"Please accept this honor. For it will always be a reminder.  A token of your deed." Sinner extended the blade out for her to reach. "I hope you'll continued being there for Fenix even when I am unable to." He added.


When Blazerine accepted the blade, Fenix started to walk away. He still couldn't bring himself to ask the only question he had been meaning ask for almost his entire life. Why did his father do this to him? 


"Why did you do it? if you're going to walk out of Fenix life again. He should at least have the right to know." Blazerine asked.


Fenix stopped dead in his tracks as his eyes widen with an expression of nothing but pure shock.


"I was young and foolish, especially what I've done to all of my children. But believe when I say this. Fenix was put in a better place than any of the others." Sinner exclaimed.


"How many kids do you have?" Blazerine raised an eyebrow.


"One dozen.... two dozen. I'm not really sure. I've sort of have lost count." Sinner said honestly.


"If I were you Fenix, I wouldn't forgive him. But it's your decision whether you do or not. The truth is, everybody is going to hurt you at one point or the other. You just gotta find the ones that are worth suffering for." Blazerine snatched the blade from him and spoken even further. "Don't you worry about Fenix. I'll watch over him. Somebody has to, cause you sure as hell aren't going to ever step up and do it."


"I'm glad." Sinner smiles sadly. Then he said, "If your friends were looking for you. Argo should have them on the right track by now. They'll probably be here sooner than you know it."


"You decided to be greedy once I got up, huh?" He chuckled. Then he nudges her while teasingly saying , "Wakey, wakey Blazey time to eatty." The most reaction he got out of her are unclear responses being mutter during her slumber.  When that didn't work. He yanked back the pelts and tossed them aside. He wasn't sure what to think after he saw her arms protectively bracing the front of her face.  Fenix thought she was desperately trying to ignore him.  "You can't block me out forever gal!" When he tried  grabbing a hand, she ended up curling it entirely around his index finger. The action wasn't forceful in the intentions of trying to hurt him. To him it was like a child trying to hold onto a fatherly figure.  He leaned closer to examine her face and realized she was still dead asleep.


"Hurry up, ya'll don't want it to get cold now!" Sinner called out.


Fenix wasn't sure what to do in this situation. The only thing he could think of was to...  he punched her upside the head then fled from the tent. Quickly he scurried over to Sinner for his helping of food.


"How yah feeling?" Sinner asked once Blazerine came staggering out of the tent.


"I have a splitting headache." She stammered.


Sinner held out a bowl of boar soup and said, "I've prepared a meal for you to eat."


"How do you expect me to eat when I'm covered in the stench of blood?" Blazerine frowned.


"Shouldn't you be used to it by now? Considering you being a girl and all." Fenix shot her a sly dog grin.


Blazerine eyes wander about as she replays his statement in her mind over and over. If anything it made her head feel worse. It did take a few minutes for her to realize what he had meant. "Fenix that's disgusting..."


Blazerine didn't find his vulgar humor funny, not at all. Unlike her, Sinner was laughing his ass off.  It was really to a point where he couldn't  formulate a single syllable properly. So instead he just points over at a bucket nearby. Quickly Blazerine headed towards it. She puffed out her cheeks a bit to conceal her-self from saying what's truly on her mind. Especially when Fenix burst out laughing him-self. It made her feel even more irritated than before.  The bucket turned out to be filled half way to the top with water. It looked clear, but there wasn't really any way for her to tell if it's actually sanitary. Whatever the case is.. she really did not care at this moment.  She cupped her hands together and scooped right in to retrieve some. Repeatedly this method was done in order to keep splashing water against her flushed cheeks. Eventually her clothing was soon to follow.  As hard as she scrubbed her trench coat. The stench of blood wouldn't seem to go away. She wanted it gone no matter what. It would be a constant reminder of the lives she had taken. But she knows deep down inside... she enjoyed it.. ever last second of it. What was she becoming? Is the person she once so long ago? It really did feel almost like an instinct.


"What's gotten into you gal?" Fenix said while peering down at her.


Blazerine lifted her head to look directly at him. "Huh?" She asked.


"Your hands are going to end up raw if you keep that up." Fenix replied.


"I don't know what else to do." Blazerine shrugged.


"I've seen this... I know that look." Sinner began. "You've never killed anyone before."


Blazerine tried her best to just ignore him and continued to scrub her trench coat. But her movement ceases once a hand is placed upon her shoulder.  He was telling her to stop without even saying it. She wasn't used to him being concern about anything she does. It's going to take a very long time to get used to it. Well if she ever does manage to adjust to it anyway.


"Good, now all you have to do is take off your clothes." Fenix said.


"W-what!? How can you even say that with a straight face!?" Blazerine angrily snapped at him.


"I think he was going to suggest washing your clothes in some boiled hot water." Sinner explained.


"Oh..." Blazerine nervously laughed.


It only took her a couple of minutes to get undress inside of the tent. Although she's not sure if this is exactly the greatest idea.  Her eyes aren't the only thing infected with abnormality. In general veins function to return deoxygenated blood to the heart. But hers weren't completely filled with just blood. The virus was running through hers. It was quite an ugly sight. Why she usually wears gloves.  The veins could easily be seen through the surface of her skin. Especially now that they're the color black. At first it was just her hands, but now even her forearms looked hideous.  It must be spreading even faster now that she has nothing to help suppressed it anymore. The most she could do right now is cover herself up in a fox pelt. The only thing other thing she had on was her sunglasses.  When she stepped out from the tent.  She could see Sinner was already working on boiling the water.


"Does it hurt?" Fenix asked. He was just standing to the left of her. His intentions wasn't to startled her, but it ended up that way regardless.


"What does what hurt?" Blazerine felt confused by his question.


"Your arms..they look..." Fenix swallowed rather harshly.


"Y-you were watching me?!" Blazerine cried. In that very second she smacked him upside the head, but by doing so... her pelt fell to the ground. In almost a blink of an eye she leaped back into the tent and buried her-self in a pile of pelts to hide.  As well hidden as she was. It didn't really fool anyone, not even that stupid Fenix.


"You're a woman... and I'm a man. Look it's just the way things are. I mean... I'm pretty sure anyone would do yah without any candles lit." Fenix protested.


"If this is your way of apologizing then you're outta' your mind! In fact this is the dumbest way possible for anyone to apologize in fact." Blazerine couldn't help but whine.


"If there's anything I can do for yah just say so... you know." Fenix mentioned before letting him-self out of the tent.


Blazerine tucked her head down further into the pelts and whispered, "It does hurt..." She didn't move from that spot until her clothes had been returned to her. She doesn't know exactly how long the whole process had taken. For her clothes to be boiled then hung up to dry in the sun. Whatever amount of time it was, it felt like forever. She left the tent as soon as she was fully clothed. Sinner was standing there, holding the weapon that the bandit leader once wield.


"I think it will be most appropriate if you hold onto Feng blade." Sinner said. He continued before she could even refuse his offer. "You must carry this blade to ensure others know of your heroic acts. You've not only freed us, but all of them... All of them who were forced to fight beneath Feng ruling."


"But I..." Blazerine began to say.


"Please accept this honor. For it will always be a reminder.  A token of your deed." Sinner extended the blade out for her to reach. "I hope you'll continued being there for Fenix even when I am unable to." He added.


Before Blazerine accepted the blade, Fenix started to walk away. He still couldn't bring himself to ask the only question he had been meaning ask for almost his entire life. Why did his father do it?


"Why did you do it? if you're going to walk out of Fenix life again. He should at least have the right to know." Blazerine asked.


Fenix stopped dead in his tracks as his eyes widen with an expression of nothing but pure shock.


"I was young and foolish, especially what I've done to all of my children. But believe when I say this. Fenix was put in a better place than any of the other ones." Sinner exclaimed.


"How many kids do you have?" Blazerine raised an eyebrow.


"One dozen.... two dozen. I'm not really sure. I've sort of have lost count." Sinner said honestly.


"If I were you Fenix, I wouldn't forgive him. But it's your decision whether you do or not. The truth is, everybody is going to hurt you at one point or the other. You just gotta find the ones that are worth suffering for." Blazerine snatched the blade from him spoken even further. "Don't you worry about Fenix. Hell if you really do anyway. I'll watch over him. Somebody has to, cause you sure as hell aren't going to ever step up and do it."


"I'm glad." Sinner smiled sadly. Then he mentions, "If your friends were looking for you. Argo should have them on the right track by now. They'll probably be here sooner than you know it."


When Lyrist and Leon did arrive, it wasn't exactly what you would call pleasant nor a humble welcoming. It was the complete opposite! Leon greeted Fenix with a punch right in the face. He went on about yelling how he had put her life in danger. Then it was her turn... At least he was kind enough to take his gauntlet off first. The expression on Fenix face showed that it must of hurt really badly.


"This is for not turning around the second you had a change to!" Leon yelled at her. When he raised his hand to slap her, Sinner actually had stepped in.


He withheld his hand back and said, " I'm glad she didn't. If it weren't for her, we wouldn't be having this conversation right now. Later on if you're still mad, punish her then. She's in no condition for it right now. "


Leon swung his other hand, which is still covered by a gauntlet at Sinner face. He fell to the ground due to the impact of the hit. Leon continued to yell. "How dare you tell me what to do after what you did! You left me behind with ma while she was still sick. She DIED. Did you know THAT!?"


"Ma....wait...a minute." Blazerine wonders. 


 Fenix blurted out, "Were brothers?" at the same time Blazerine asked, "You two are brothers?"

© Tiffany Ann Adkins 2015 - 2019