Book Three Chapter Two: The Trail Beyhond

Book Three Chapter Two: The Trail Beyhond

A Chapter by Ryan Henderson


Chapter Two The Trail Beyond: Saja was transported back to the realm of the Black Reqrium, as was customary when she died, which was not often. The sky was black and dark purple. Saja was warped into a place in the wilderness. In this realm, there was no temperature, there was no sun to provide light, and there was only the darkest light, from the darkest moon. Saja saw the familiar black cliffs that she used as landmarks to find her way back to the Council of The Black Reqrium. Saja took off in a sprint. She never felt so alive, this was a feeling she could only get in this realm. "Ah, it's good to be home." She said to herself with a smile. In no time, Saja was at the council, they were merely a group of six people who were very wise, and very powerful. They sat in a circle around a circular rune that has been there since the dawn of time, it is said to symbolize ultimate power.


            Saja walked up to the center of the rune, and bowed, then knelt. This was customary procedure. She bowed her head. "Great and wise council, I request assistance in dealing with the Chosen One." Saja almost smiled, she was absolutely sure that she would get help. The head councilman nodded. "And what kind of... assistance... would be necessary?" Asked the head councilman. "Surely you are quite the match for the Chosen One? Has he bested you?" The rest of the council chuckled. "Do you know what the punishment for failure to comply with your vows is?" Asked the head councilman. Saja gulped. This was not going as planned. Fear shot through Saja. "Death..." She said in a weak, fear stricken voice.


            "Correct." Said the head councilman. "And can you remember the vow you took, right in the very place you are kneeling in, all those years ago?" Saja bowed her head even deeper, this time in sorrow. "I vowed... To kill the... The Chosen One." Saja choked out, on the verge of tears. Saja thought she would get help from the council, this was not going to end well. "Again, correct. Do you know how long it's been since you made your vow?" He asked. "Three... Three hundred years." Said Saja, this time unable to suppress a tear. "And do you know how long we gave you to kill the last chosen one, and the current one?" A few more tears rolled down Saja's face. "Three hundred years." Said Saja softly. "But I killed the last one, Tigiti." Said Saja, hopefully.


            "Yes, and since you failed ever so miserably to kill the current one, the duty of terminating the Chosen One falls to me." Said the head councilman. "What is to become of me?" Asked Saja. "You seemed to show adequate understanding a few moments ago." The head councilman reached behind himself and grabbed a sword, a very special sword, the only sword that could kill Saja without her reincarnating. Saja did not get up, she was forbidden to move unless the council said otherwise. She sat there, Kneeling, waiting to the cold kiss of death to touch her. The head councilman stepped forward, into the rune with Saja. "Please, brother, have mercy!" Saja begged. Saja's brother raised the sword, and impaled her, straight through the heart.


            Saja's brother, Vladimir, chuckled and said "Yes, it is about time I have returned to the earthen plain. Perhaps I will pay the Chosen One a visit." Vladimir, having inherited some powers from his parents, could assume the form of anyone he wants, he can hide himself in the subspace, and he can travel between worlds. Vladimir stepped out of the circle, went to the center of the rune and said "I will return when our little nuisance has been dealt with." He then opened a portal to Earth, stepped through, and sealed it.


            I decided to dedicate the next few days nursing my friends back to health. I layed them all down throughout the house; on couches, beds and blankets. I would nurse Hale first, he had a broken nose. I went up the stairs to his room and walked through the door. "Alright Hale, let's take a look at that nose." Don't get me wrong, I wasn't about to go all pro doctor on him, I didn't know that much about medical things, but I did know the basics. His nose was bent upwards to the left, and it had dried blood underneath it. I touched it, and he winced. "It hurts." He said. "Alright, I'm going to try to crack it back into place." I told him. He let out a groan. "This is gonna suck." He said. I reached up to the tip of the nose. "This is going to hurt, but I go as fast as I can." I said to him. I dragged it down hard to the bottom right side, and stopped at the center when it looked normal. Hale let out a pained, annoyed yell. He sat bolt upright in his bed, and fealt his nose. It started bleeding. "Well, it doesn't hurt any more, but it started bleeding." I went to the closet and brought him some tissues. "Thanks Nick." He said.


            I went down the steps. I would tend to Kaleen and Anara next. They both had a few broken bones by the looks of it. I found the two girls on the couch, where I had set them. Anara had her arm across her chest, so I'm pretty sure that she had a broken arm. Kaleen was asleep. "Anara, what happened to you?" I asked. She shot me an annoyed look. "Well, my leg was ripped off, and then I just got beaten nearly to death by a crazed vampire." She said. I almost forgot about her metal leg. "Is it your arm that hurts?" I asked. "Yes, I think it's broken." She said. I picked up her arm and tried to straighten it, but Anara let out an agonized scream, and landed a surprisingly solid punch on my jaw with her good hand. "Don't do that." She said. I looked at the joint of the elbow, it was much swelled and it sat at an odd angle, it was probably dislocated. "You might be dealing with a dislocation." I told her. "I am going to try and fix it." I reached down to her elbow, grabbed her bicep-which was pretty solid- and I grabbed her forearm, and twisted them so that they were both connected. She yelped and punched me in the arm. It really hurt. I pulled back and caressed it. It would definitely bruise. Anara's arm looked fine. "The swelling should go down in a few days." I told her.


            Next was Kaleen She was sleeping on the couch and- wait a minute... Vampires didn't sleep... I shook her awake and her eyes immediately burst open. "I forgot that I couldn't sleep." She said sheepishly. "I was trying to rest my eyes." She added. I examined her and asked "What did Saja do to you?" She felt herself up and down and said "Well, vampires can't get broken bones, but she beat me real good, you should go see someone else, you can't do much for me." With that, I went upstairs to Chibata.


            Chibata was in the king sized bed in the master bedroom. He looked very battered. He was asleep, and breathing shallowly. I could tell he was in pain. He had a black eye, a few bruises on his face that had already started to show, and he probably had more on his chest and back. His right leg looked odd as well. I went over and tried to wake him up. It didn't work. I didn't think that I could do anything about the bruises, so I looked at his leg. It was swollen, but didn't look dislocated. I decided to let him rest. I think I would do the same. I went into the bed that Saja nearly killed me in, and tried to sleep.


            I succeeded in finding sleep, though I had a strange dream, it was about a dark place, with dark cliffs all around, and a black and purple sky, light only by a moon. I was flying through this strange world, when I saw a figure, a man, flying through a portal much like the ones I have taken between worlds. This man had black hair, purple eyes, a very slender build, and he was tall, taller than me. As soon as I blinked, there was a different scene, it was of the same man, fighting another man. The opposing man sliced at the man from my dream with a knife. The man from my dream caught the attacker's arm on his own, twisted it using his body, so that their arms were intwined. Then, the man from my dream turned into his attacker in a slowly ascending cloud of smoke and with a hissing noise. The man from my dream then killed his attacker with his own knife.


            I blinked again and the scene changed again, it showed the man in a black, barren plain I blinked again and the final scene happened; it shown the man opening a portal to my world. I sat bolt upright in bed. I was in a cold sweat, and the name Vladimir was ringing in my skull, ricocheting of the sides. I couldn't get it out of my head. Was that the man's name? My mind flicked through all of the things he did: assumed the form of someone else, traveled between worlds, and was on a black plain the subspace? This man, presumably Vladimir, could do all of the things a subspace corruptor could do.


            I put those disturbing thoughts out of my head and went to go check on my friends. Hale was healing nicely, as was Anara, Kaleen was already perfectly fine, and could vampires quickly heal? It was the one of few questions I had not asked her. I made a mental note to do so and went up to check on Chibata. As I mounted the staircase: "Nick, come in here." Shouted Hale from downstairs. I rounded the bend in the wall and went to the downstairs. Everyone was seated around the table, except for Chibata, that is. "Listen man," Started Hale. "I had a dream last night, a bad one. Saja's brother, Vladimir, is on his way to Earth." I got excited. "I had the same dream!" I exclaimed. "Yes, I imagine you did, all chosen ones have prophetic dreams, since I was Tigiti's disciple, I have prophetic dreams concerning Saja. Anyway, Vladimir killed Saja, and-" I cut him off. "Saja is dead?!" I yelled. "Yes, but-" That's great! Isn't this Vladimir guy on our side?" I was so happy, Saja was finally dead! "Listen!" Yelled Hale. "No, you should not be happy, Vladimir killed Saja because she failed to kill you, now he is coming here, right now to come and kill us all! He is Saja's brother! He killed his own sister because she didn't kill you! Listen man, we need to clear out of here, and find a safer place, he knows we are here!" I thought of this new information, Saja is dead, killed by her own brother who wants to kill me himself? Sheesh.


            "I don't want to do this," Hale went on. "But we got to leave today, with or without the old man." I shook my head, bewildered. "Chibata helped us defeat the Kerulen raid, there is no way we could have survived without him, and I’m not leaving without him." I said with finality.  Hale looked torn. "I know what you're saying, but what I'm saying, is that we need to leave, or we'll all die." Now I was torn. "I don't want to leave Chibata." I said. I felt a hand on my shoulder and a familiar, rough voice in my ear. "Good, 'cause you won't have to." I looked up to see Chibata smiling down at me, he looked drowsy. "You're one tough old man." Said Anara. Kaleen giggled. Hale was silent. "Alright," I said. "If Hale says that Vladimir is coming, there isn't a doubt in my mind saying otherwise, we need to move."


            Soon we were all in the jeep and cruising along the road. I sat in the back with Kaleen and Anara, Hale was in the passenger seat and Chibata was driving. We all had our knives with us. "So, Kaleen, I've been meaning to ask you something." I said. Kaleen looked over to me. "Oh, this should be good." Said Anara with a grin. "Hey, shut up, kid." I said. "So anyway, I've been meaning to ask you, do vampires heal faster than humans?" She said "Yes, I don't know if every vampire can, but I think it has something to do with blood, like it heals us faster, I don't really know how it works." I processed this knew information. It made me think of my time as a vampire, and that got me thinking of the thirst. "Kaleen, have you... Fed lately?" I asked. "Yes, I fed last night." She replied. "Did you drain an animal or...?" She grinned. "What do you think?" She asked me. I visibly shuddered. It seems okay as a vampire, but as a human it's just gross.


            "Making small talk, are we?" Taunted Anara. "Kid, I told you to shut up." I said, deliberately trying to antagonize her. Anara crossed her arms, I don't think she liked being talked down to. I knew she was just teasing, but that girl really gets under your skin. I think Kaleen had enough of Anara as well, because she said: "Hey Nick, you know what was really funny?" I thought for a bit. "No, what?" I asked. "When you were a vampire and I caught you hunting Anara, and I caught you trying to drink her blood while she slept." I decided to play along with the joke, even though it happened. "Yeah, I wish you hadn't stopped me." I said with a grin pointed at Anara. "Th-that didn't happen." She said. "You can believe whatever your little heart desires." Kaleen said with a small smile. Anara's eyes got big, I don't think she would be opening her mouth any time soon. I chuckled silently to myself.


            I heard Chibata ask Hale from the front seat: "So, where do you plan to go?" Hale said "The farther away, the better. I looked up from Kaleen, we had rolled into a town. "Uh, oh, we're low on gas." Said Chibata. Hale swore. "Perfect timing." Mumbled Hale. "I'll go and see if I can find some." Kaleen said, standing up. "I think you should go with her." Said Anara. "Kid, I'm going to-" Hale cut me off. "I think it's a good idea." He said. "Safety in numbers, right?" Chibata said. I didn't object. Hale winked at me. Once we were away from the jeep, we decided to look around, we saw a gas station around the corner. "That would be too easy." Said Kaleen. "But we'll give it a try." We moved along silently. We kept an eye out for Kerulen. We checked around the pumps, but found no gas, and the pumps were probably empty. We checked inside the store, but all we found were empty jerry cans. "It was too easy." I said.


            We left the gas station and moved across the street. "Where else do we find gas?" Asked Kaleen. "I have no idea." I said. She walked around and started looking for something. "What are you looking for?" I asked. She walked across the street into a garage, or rather, sped across the street at light speed. Vampire speed. Gotta love it. She came back with a small, dirty bucket. "What do you plan on doing with that? Smacking Anara in the head, I hope?" I said. She shook her head and said "She may be annoying, but she is younger than you, and my only living relative, and to answer your question, watch this." She sped over to a car, set the bucket on the ground, lifted up the car, and dumped a few drops of gasoline out, I understood what she was doing.


            She did that to a few more cars, and when the bucket was half full, she lifted another car, then I saw something behind her, a Kerulen. Before it lunged at her, I jumped into its charging path without thinking. It blew past Kaleen, taking me with it. It slammed into me and flew into a wall, putting me back first into it. It was leaning in to bite me, I put my hands on its shoulders, and held it at bay. Why hadn't Kaleen come to help me? I looked over to see she had company of her own, two Kerulen. I was on my own.


            I pushed it away a few inches, giving me time to draw my knife, no sooner did I do that than it shoved me to the ground, and I was flat on my back, with my arms at my sides. It got on top of me, holding my wrists down, it was going in for the kill. Terror hyper charged me, I struggled against its hold, and I bucked and thrashed around. That bought me a few seconds, it was back on me in that short time, all I had time to do was get my hands up to my chest. It knocked the knife out of my hands and it clattered to the side, a few feet away. I grabbed its forehead and locked my arms straight. "You are a tough one." It said to me.


            I bucked up using my lower back, and threw it off of me. I rolled to the side to pick up my knife, leaving my back exposed. I curled one finger around the handle, when it grabbed me in a bear hug and threw me against the same wall it had me on before. The one finger on the knife gave out in midair and it clattered to the ground in front of me. It was between me and the Kerulen. Between me and death. I bolted for it, pushing off of the wall with my foot, giving myself extra speed. I slammed into the Kerulen with full force and knocked it backwards a bit. I bent down and picked up the knife. I was still in the crouching position from picking up the knife when it came back.


            I stayed crouched to maintain maneuverability, and rolled to my right. Wrong choice. Since I didn't look, I banged my head off of a brick wall. Clutching my head with one hand and my knife in the other, I ran in a blind sprint across the wall I had been on earlier. As it turns out I was running towards where Kaleen was still fighting off two Kerulen. I saw my opportunity. I stabbed one of them in the side of the neck as I ran by, without stopping. I still had my Kerulen on me, and it was gaining speed. There was a dead end up ahead. There was nothing to do. I didn't stop because I made a split second decision, a very risky split second decision.


            I'm going to run right up that wall, onto the roof. I told myself that. I through my knife up, knowing that it would just get in the way when I grabbed the ledge. I jumped up, continued running up the wall, fueled by adrenaline. I grabbed the ledge with a few fingers on each hand. I swung my legs over hastily. I heard a dull thud as the Kerulen ran into the wall. Idiot. It probably cracked some bricks, too. I looked down at the Kerulen, who was dazed. I grabbed my knife, jumped down, and stabbed it down the collar bone. It fell to the ground, finally dead.


            I ran back to Kaleen, seeing that she had taken care of her last Kerulen. She looked to me and said "Thank you so much, I don't think I would have lived through that if you didn't kill one of the Kerulen." She was out of breath and the sentence practically burst with emotion and sincerity. She gave me a hug. I hugged back. After a few seconds, we released, and realized we still needed gas. One of the Kerulen had knocked over the bucket. "Perfect." I said. "Don't worry, it isn't hard work getting the gas." She had her breath back. She grabbed the bucket and over turned more cars. We found and filled a few larger buckets and went back to the jeep.


            After we poured the gas into the gas hatch we shut it, and got back into the rear seats of the jeep. "What took you two so long?" Asked Anara. Kaleen showed her fangs. Anara flinched. I started laughing. It wasn't that funny, but hey, when you are constantly battling the forces of evil, you don't get to laugh very often, so I get my Yuks in where I can. After we started moving, I was tapped on the shoulder. I turned around to see Hale. He spoke in a whisper. "So what did take you two so long? You get in a little-" He stopped talking and pursed his lips, quietly making kissing noises. "Okay, two things," I began. "One, I saved her, we ran into a few Kerulen." Hale nodded. "Nice, Nice." He said, nodding his approval. "And two, Kaleen can probably hear you." The grin fell off of his face when Kaleen cleared her throat. He slumped out of sight into his seat.


            Later in the ride I saw Anara looking over the side of the open backed Jeep, watching the yellow lines whip by in a blur. I shot a look to Kaleen, then back to Anara. Kaleen looked puzzled. I looked to her, then back to Anara and raised my eyebrows. A look of understanding fell over her face and she smiled, and nodded slowly. I crept along the metal floor of the jeep silently. I grabbed Anara's shirt by the back, pushed her so she was dangling over the edge, her whole body above her knees, and pulled her back in. She let out a yelp. "Nick!" She said, punching me relentlessly. It hurt. A lot. I could see tears forming in her eyes, and I could almost hear Anara's racing heart, I'm sure Kaleen could because she was trying to hide her giggles behind her hand, but failed. "Kaleen!" Whined Anara. This made Kaleen laugh harder. "Hey, look on the bright side." I said. Anara looked to me. "I could've let go." I finished. She shot a look of pure anger to me that made me want to look away.


            I looked to the front seat, where Hale was and found that he was laughing uncontrollably. "You sir, are an arteest." He said through gulps of air. He made the I sound like ee. Anara had her arms crossed, glaring at me with a look that said: 'I'll get you back.' I heard Chibata scoff. "Kids will be kids." He muttered to himself. After we were on the road for a while longer, we pulled into a small town, probably only had around 50,000 people in it before the apocalypse happened. "Alright, this is probably far enough away from Vladimir, he probably won't find us." Said Chibata. "I'll go look for more gas." I said, starting off. Kaleen did not come with me this time, no one did. I walked around until I saw a gas station with a small store near it. I went into the store and saw someone rummaging through bins in the corner, with its back to me. I drew my knife and cautiously walked up to it. "Friend or foe?" I simply said. The man turned around, shining his flashlight in my face. He had a full grown beard, I think I recognized him...


The man squinted at me. "Ceisul?" He said. For a second I thought 'huh?' but then I remembered, I told this man that my name was Ceisul. "Theodore." I said. "So, you're alive." Theodore stated. "Where are your people?" I asked. "They weren't strong enough to survive." He said. "That's what sets them apart from you and me, Ceisul. Weakness, you can't have it in this new world." I shook his head scornfully, as if he was ashamed to think about weakness. "I've seen my share of deaths, too." I said. "I think we all have." He replied. "You still with Lucy, William and Scott?" He asked. At first my mind drew a blank, but then I remembered that those were the names of Lisa, Eric and Tim. "Dead." I said. "That's a shame." He shook his head again. I was happy to see that someone I met earlier had survived. I know felt guilty for lying to him. "Well, I'm going to go." I said. "Take this, Ceisul." He said, lugging a twenty liter jerry can, full of gasoline. "Thank you very much." I said. "Be safe." He told me. "And you." I said.  He waved goodbye. I turned towards the jeep with the gas.


            Once I was there, I loaded it into the back, and we pulled into a house that was not far from where we parked. It would have been a nice view from the window, if it hadn't been eternal night. It had a massive bay window in the front, overlooking the front driveway and road, which made it good for surveillance. One of the bedrooms in the rear of the house had a good vantage point on the back yard. It wasn't too high either, so we could jump out if we needed to. We all decided to go to sleep, and we would discuss what we would do in the morning.


            That night I had another strange dream about this Vladimir character, this one was more disturbing than the last. It was short. In the dream I was standing in front of Vladimir, there was a tension in the room, like the calm before the storm. He didn't speak, he just looked into my eyes. He was very intimidating, like he was sending fear through his gaze into mine. After a few seconds, I could see my reflection in them, then, the reflection of myself changed. In his eyes, I saw my own battered body, along with Kerulen overtaking the world around me. He smiled a cruel smile that reminded me of Saja.       


            I woke up feeling groggy. I wasn't rested yet. I heard the floorboards creaking. Was someone in the room with me? Memories of Ectoclis came rushing back, memories of the night of Luna's betrayal. My eye's struggled to penetrate the darkness. I made out the form of someone, a few feet away, but it disappeared. "Is someone there?" I asked, a little fear touched my voice. "Vladimir... Vladimir... Vladimir... Coming..." A whispering voice came, right next to my ear. I turned to look, but no one was there. Was I still dreaming? My fear felt real enough. "Vladimir..." The voice whispered into my ear again. I looked, no one was there! I was starting to get scared now. I then heard the sound of finger nails scratching along the wall, right beside me! I looked, the noise persisted. Was it possible for darkness to disorient your hearing? Maybe I shifted positions in my sleep, and I'm not where I think I am in the room.


            The whispering voice chuckled, and I felt a hand stroking my head. I was too fear stricken to grab it. The chuckling suddenly turned into laughter... Female laughter... The laughter of a twelve year old. The light came on, and the room came in to view, I had indeed fallen off the bed. I looked up to see who was scaring me, and it was Anara! Wearing night vision goggles. "You!" I yelled. I stood up and ran after her. What I would do when I caught her, I didn't know. But hey, I was mad, and scared. Anara started laughing. Every time I went to grab her, she danced away.


            Kaleen came out of her room up the hall. "What is all the noise?" She asked. She caught a look at Anara, and me chasing her. She giggled. Anara hid behind Kaleen, like a nervous three year old would behind her mother. "Make him stop!" Laughed Anara. I tried to go around Kaleen, but every time I thought I surprised her, she would already be there, in my face, which just made Anara laugh harder. "Hold up a minute, what did she do?" Asked Kaleen, suppressing a giggle. "She snuck into my room, and started whispering 'Vladimir... Vladimir coming!' And she scared the daylights out of me!" Anara was laughing it up from behind Kaleen. She was on her back, rolling around and gasping for air. "You should have seen the look on his face!" Anara gasped. "Priceless!"


            "This is no time to joke around." I said. "Vladimir is coming for us, and you are pulling pranks." I said. By now Anara had gotten herself together. "Keep an eye on her, please Kaleen?" I asked with a pleading face. She laughed. "Maybe." I groaned. "I'm going back to bed." I announced, "Now we're even." Anara whispered from right beside me. I jumped. "Stop doing that!" I yelled. I looked back to Kaleen, to see that she was in a fit of silent laughter. "Great." I said to myself.


            I went to bed and fell asleep soon, silently praying that I would have no nightmares about Vladimir. My prayers did nothing to ward off the plague like dreams concerning Vladimir. In this dream I stood before him. He starred at me, saying nothing, as usual. "What do you want from me!?" I yelled. He just chuckled. Not Saja's arrogant, confident chuckle, it was a slow, short and mocking laugh that sounded like it was muffled. I yelled at him, not words, just a combination of anger and fear leaving my body in the form of sound. He chuckled again, wagged his finger from side to side slowly, and then pointed behind me.


            What I saw terrifies me to this day. What I saw was the dark realm that I once saw Vladimir in in a dream, it was slowly getting closer to Earth, but it was gaining speed. Eventually it slammed into Earth, causing an explosion so devastating that I thought it wiped out all life from Earth, but something told me that it was just an invisible airwave, with no real substance, therefore it could not do any physical harm, but it signaled something far more sinister than an explosion; the collision of two worlds.


            Soon after the explosion, I saw a small group of people in dark robes. All of their robes bore the same symbol. Just looking at that symbol gave me a bad feeling, like it represented something extremely evil. I then saw the scenery fade into blackness. I saw the robed group of people standing together, with Kerulen as far as the eye can see in front of them. It looked like the Kerulen would kill them, but instead, they bowed down. "Wittiness the demise of your world, Chosen One." Vladimir said. His voice was smooth, I could tell he didn't speak often.




© 2014 Ryan Henderson


Author's Note

Ryan Henderson
The second chapter is here! Please tell me what you think :)

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I love this chapter! The characters are so likable! Anara is so cheeky and fun loving and it is funny seeing how she is told off by Nick and Kaleen at some parts. I love how the heroes try to have a little fun in the midst of total desolation in the world! Very good writing, keep it up!

Posted 5 Years Ago


Ryan Henderson

5 Years Ago

Yes, I enjoyed making Anara cheeky! Thank you for reviewing!

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Added on October 16, 2014
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Author

Ryan Henderson
Ryan Henderson

Cobourg, Ontario, Canada



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I will review your work if you send me a read request, I like to help writers get off of the ground, I will also suggest ideas for your work if needed. Please note that I don't really like poetry... more..

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