B1 — 26. Warpath

Fiona’s POV 1/3


Preparing herself, Fiona began to glow as her wings appeared and she activated Wind Shield.  Flapping them, she shot into the sky. Stopping fifteen feet above the patio, she cast a Wind Wall below her, stopping a volley of light arrows.

Hanna ceased her attack, staring up at her with pursed lips, but soon smiled.  Banner was by the rail guard, kneeling beside Briana as he examined her Ice Spear.  Okay, Banner’s free … my Ice Spear just immobilized him.  What the crap! What kind of warrior am I?

Briana sighed, hands on her hips as she looked up at her.  “Hanna, those arrows are…”

Fiona’s vision shifted to the hard shell domes surrounding the kids.  They’re all safe for now, but they need air.  She manipulated the shell bottom’s with Earth Displacement to create holes for them to breath.  That should…

Her eyes shot open as a bright light exploded below her; she frantically beat her wings, feeling gravity slam against her body as she flew backward, barely missing a massive burst of light that pierced her Wind Wall.  What the crap!

Hanna had her bow pulled back, white glowing arrow brightening by the second.  A charged shot?  Of course there’d be a charged shot!

Licking her lips, Fiona pulled the earth up, surrounding the three gangsters.  They stiffened as the patio trembled, dirt rising toward them. That should buy me some time.  As the shell rose, they all dodged; Hanna jumped off to the side, Briana camouflaged, and Banner turned into a liquid to melt through the floor.  Seriously?  These guys are so annoying!

Releasing the magic, the earth only partially formed into an Earth Shield.  She darted down and manipulated the earth to open up, using Levitate to lift the children, she shot into the air but froze as Hanna hopped back on the railing, bow aimed at a girl no more than seven years old.

“Hey!  Calm down, little Fairy!”  She grinned, arrow brightening.

Fiona took a deep breath, biting her lower lip.  They were fifteen feet above the covering, but she’d seen how accurate Hanna could be.  They’re so fast at recovering!  If I try to go, she can just pierce my Wind Wall and kill a kid…

Briana appeared on the patio cover, tail swishing back and forth as she grinned up at her.  “You’re pretty fun! A lot funner than regular Beastkin and the like, there were quite a few that fought back, but they were easy prey.”

Fiona looked back at the kids, still in their placid state before glaring down at Hanna.  I don’t get them!  “Were you never a sister or mom?  Why would you kill kids?”

Fiona’s vision darted to a puddle that rose up around one of the side pillars of the patio.  “Oh, wrong words there, Fairy.”

“Teh, mom or sister?”  Hanna scoffed. “I grew up on the streets after my parents abandoned me.  My mom went on and on about how she should have had an abortion since it was illegal to kill a kid; she would have had no problem aborting a child.  Eventually, she just dropped me off here. Proof right? I don’t even remember what state they lived in or what she looked like.”

“So, what, this is all a game to you?”  Fiona seethed. “Your parents abandoned you, so now just kill or hurt anyone?”  This is really like a warzone!  They’re crazy!

Briana snickered.  “Please, we know it’s wrong, but we don’t care.  It’s fun, and who’s going to stop us? It feels so good just playing with people, like a cat playing with a mouse!  Nature, right?” She licked her lips. “Nature … Fairies might taste good, who knows? I mean, it can’t be cannibalism now, right?”  Her eyes widened in shock. “Humans aren’t cannibalism now!”

“Woah,” Hanna, chuckled, still aiming a charged arrow at the young girl.  “Even I wouldn’t go that far, Bri. Don’t do a Banner!”

Fiona felt her skin prickle.  Don’t do a Banner?  This can’t be real. She glared at the partial liquid man, wrapped around the post.  “You—ate someone?”

Banner’s eyebrows lifted.  “Oh, mad?” He chuckled. “Oh, yeah, I definitely ate people; I’m an Aberationkin, a Slime—it felt so natural as they … dissolved inside me.  You know, they can breathe, if I want them to, and then they just feel the acidic burn.” He grinned. “No one can hear their screams as they float, trapped in my digestive membrane…”

“Yo,” Briana sniffed.  “TMI, man! That’s a bit too much for me.”

“Yeah, shut up, Banner!  I might throw up. I mean, killing the kids, sure, but slowly melting them?  Gave me the shivers last time I saw it.”

Fiona could feel her temper flaring; a storm she never experienced as a human.  They … he … melted children alive?  Inside him? A shiver ran down her spine as she felt Scarlet’s Fear Aura activate up north, but it was a drop of water in an inferno.  That’s right … these aren’t people, they’re monsters, worse than monsters, filth!  Murder by crushing, gassing, melting, experimenting … men, women, children … it doesn’t matter to them.  Monsters? I’m a monster now, right? It takes monsters to deal with monsters!

Thirty percent of her remaining energy vanished; she lifted her hands above her head as she activated the next stage of Inferno, Conflagration.  A tight ball of red energy grew to the size of the pool below them as most her aura flashed deep red.

“Woah!”  Banner muttered.

“Hey, hey, I’ll shoot…”

Briana’s ears pulled back and she muttered a curse as she stared up at the ball above her, tail drooping limply.  The sphere had multiple spherical hues inside as new layers continued to form, becoming lighter and lighter as it expanded.

Fiona threw her hands down; the ball shot toward Hanna.  Briana kicked off the patio cover, racing to tackle Hanna as Fiona lost sight of the scene below her; activating Wind Wall at the maximum output, she felt three percent of her energy leave as they shot into the air.

The sound was as loud as the tank shell, fire roaring below them.  The scalding steam was forced around the children as her wall combatted the rising heat.  Breathing a deep sigh, she examined the devastation below. All of the plastic had turned to vapor, fumes following her wind’s current, and the metals were either partially melted or puddles of bubbling liquid.

The conflagration was so hot that it yellowed the concrete, causing it to crack from the rapid expansion, and the plant life was instantly disintegrated, leaving no fire.  The back half of the patio lit with rising flames, the only live fire, everything else was either melted or evaporated.

Creating a few large balls of water the size of a couch, she dropped them on the parts that were getting out of control.  Wow … that was crazy powerful, but it did cost a ton of my energy.  After all the spells I’ve been using, I only have about thirty-eight percent of my energy left … that’s after eating enough sugar to give me that Addled debuff too.  More than half my life is gone…

She snapped back to her senses as some of the steam around the pool blew away; three bodies laid at the bottom.  A foot of boiling water was left, the atmosphere thick with humidity. Both Hanna and Briana were in some kind of gelatinous body, but they weren’t unscathed.

Hanna’s right arm, the front of her face, and part of her left breast were charcoal, flaking away in Banner’s body; teeth clenched in pain, she grasped at her blackened shoulder, clearly crying.

From her shins to her feet, Briana’s legs reflected the blast they received, face mirroring Hanna’s agony.

Fiona observed the three with contempt.  They actually survived that?  Slimes are pretty freaking resilient.  She hovered toward them, the two girls completely oblivious to anything but their own pain.  Serves them right!

Coldly, Fiona began to glow light blue as she raised a hand, Ice Spear forming; Banner’s upper body appeared from the gelatinous substance, forming to lie against the pool’s cracked and scalding bottom side.

“Wh—wait—please…”

Fiona glared at him.  “It looks like my Conflagration did affect you.  You’re barely holding it together.” She lowered her hand toward Briana, slowly moving the thin, long shard of ice toward her thigh inside the jelly.  “Slow, that’s what makes it fun, right?”

Banner grit his teeth as the gelatin began to liquefy.  “Ah, not so fast…” Fiona clicked her tongue, sending a burst of cold air at him from her other hand, hardening the liquid.

Teeth beginning to chatter, Banner’s upper half began to shiver.  “Wha—wait … please—ack…” Her spear began to penetrate his chilled body, burrowing at a constant rate until it struck Briana’s leg, causing a silent scream.

“How odd—you really can’t hear her,” Fiona muttered as she formed another spear.  “You know, I wonder how many children’s screams you heard today? How many cries for help—for you to stop?”

The rod entered his body, moving toward Hanna’s right shoulder.  “You used that arm to kill kids, did you? Torture them?” Her icicle entered Hanna’s shoulder, severing the cartilage and grinding against bone.

“N—no,” Banner shivered.  “Hanna didn’t—didn’t torture…”

“Is that right?”  Fiona asked, cold blue and vivid green eyes rising to meet Banner’s upper half.  “Well then, I guess she’s off the hook.” Creating another spear, she shot it like a bullet through Hanna’s chest.  Her eyes widened, before deadening, trembling body going limp.

“Wha—what kin—kind of hero—are you?”

Fiona glared at him, fireball appearing in her hand as she activated Inferno, glow tinting red.  “Who said I was a hero? I’m a monster—just like you. A mythical monster, really, not a legendary hero, and apparently they aren’t that great either.”  She pushed the fireball forward, increasing the energy as it entered Banner’s body. His upper body tensed before liquifying, sliding back into the water as it began to bubble viciously.

Briana’s body dropped into the pool as Banner melded with the torrent, making her scream as she hit the boiling liquid.  Thrashing about as the ice in her leg melted, Fiona watched her boil alive, safe behind her Wind Shield. “Cooked like a lobster.  Is this fun?” After a few minutes, she stopped flailing, eyes dead.

She’d never felt this way before, rage, disgusted, powerful, willing to do anything to complete her goal.  The thought touched her mind as she released Inferno. What am I getting from this?  Why am I doing this? Oh, Warpath?  It makes my spells consume more energy than normal … but makes me more powerful, fearless, and motivated.  It’s an Enrage skill … crap … it won’t deactivate until I kill Terrell.

“Are you still alive, Banner?”  She asked, glancing down at the rippling water.  “You seem really really resilient … so, I should make sure.  Do I have lightning?” She smiled. “Of course I do, Spark.” The more energy I infuse, the stronger it becomes, but the cost to power ratio increases the more energy I dump into it.  Warpath will increase the power output a ton, but it’s going to cost me. That’s okay, I shouldn’t need that much.

Fiona examined her hand as her green fingernail color mixed with yellow hews, sparks dancing at her fingertips.  “Well then, Banner, thanks for being my guinea pig.”

Pointing her hand down, she sent a bolt of electricity into the boiling water.  She shifted her head to the left as liquid spikes shot out of the pool five feet from her, convulsing in thousands of spasms with the corpses in front of her.  After several seconds, she released Spark, but the liquid stood stock still in the same shape.

Glaring at Banner, she huffed, “For good measure.”  Her aura lit red as she scorched the spikes. They quickly turned to steam, rising into the air and around the children, following the Wind Wall’s current.

She didn’t waste a second after the last of Banner’s body evaporated; darting into the air, she cut all of her spells except Levitation and Wind Shield.  The children followed her on currents of air as she dropped them off in a room, barring the door with a wall of dirt. The ventilation system should give them enough air.

Flying back to the ocean, she rose high into the sky, looking over the moonlit area.  I felt Scarlet’s Fear Aura more to the left and north, on the beach.  It’s gone now, so I don’t even know where she is. She must be fighting Relica, but for her to take this long … I don’t know.

Floating over the ocean, she searched, looking for any kind of boat.  No, she can handle it!  She might even be fighting Terrell … he needs to die for this to be over!  How much energy do I have? Thirty-four percent; Warpath will kill me if I don’t kill him soon.  For all this pain to be worth it … making me see all that … hear it. I’ll find him. I just want this all to be over, all of it…

Her vision caught something in the distance; a few Coast Guard boats were destroyed, turned upside down as they began to sink.  That way!  Beating her wings as hard as she could, she felt gravity press against her body, but the wind flowed around her shield.  She shot toward the wreckage, reaching it within a minute. There were several life rafts with men frantically trying to reach them as the ships sank.

Using Levitate on everyone she could see, they shouted in shock as they were lifted out of the water and plopped onto the orange life rafts.  Floating down to one, she hovered in front of three soldiers.

“Hey, where’d they go?”

The men recoiled, “What the…”

“Is that a glowing Fairy?”

Fiona pressed a hand against her forehead.  “Focus, focus! The people that sank you, where did they go?”

The rest of the crew on the raft jumped with shock as the waves rose and fell around them, forcing Fiona to follow their motion.  One of the men wiped water from his face. “Uhh, last I saw—they kept East.”

“Slightly North, going East,” another muttered.  “What…”

Breaking away, Fiona flew high into the sky, scanning North East.  They can’t have gotten that far … it’s only been like twenty minutes at most.  Where…

She caught sight of a long ocean speedboat.  Gritting her teeth, she shot toward it; the boat was speeding away, she was gaining on it, but it took ten minutes before she could finally see it clearly.

The boat was at least fifty feet long, painted a sleek yellow and black with AMG written on the hood and sides.  It fit five people, and all the seats were taken.  Daran was driving with his brother beside him, he didn’t look well; Terrell, the black man that made the drinks, and some brown-skinned woman sat in the back.  Terrell was clutching at his right shoulder, where an arm used to be. That blood, I cut off Terrell’s arm with that Ice Spear!  Did they bring his arm with them?

The woman looked back, eyes locking on her.  She shoved Terrell, tilting her head back with a deep frown.  He shouted something before doubling over, hand latching onto his shoulder.  The man beside him reached over, hand glowing as he held it against Terrell’s wound, the pain on his face easing.  He must be a healer … of course, Terrell would have a healer close by.

Raising her hand, Fiona created an Ice Spear and threw it at the boat; just before the spear struck, the woman whipped her hand up, sending out a bolt of electricity, shattering her ice.  More ability users?  You have to be kidding me!  If she shatters the ice, then fire…

Activating Inferno, she raced along the side of the boat, but just before she could throw the blazing globe, a wave shot up.  The wave swallowed her; Wind Shield striking the water, it was thrown around her as she dove into the ocean, energy plummeting.

“Sucking hobgoblin!”  She shouted as the murky ocean flowed around her shield.  “Where the crap…” She cut off as something slammed against her shield, shooting her back to the surface; she launched out of the water, a geyser pushing her fifty feet into the air.  “Suck! Where did that come from?”

She frowned, looking around.  She caught the boat racing away.  That took down like ten percent of my energy … what the crap!  I … is it another ability user in the water? That other chick has electricity powers, so … some kind of fish Beastkin?  How do I fight that? Do I have anything to see in the water? Light Globe, sweet! Once I activate it, it’ll illuminate a space for a minute.  Alright, can I get Water Prison to trap him? Perfect, let’s do this. Round two!

Darting back toward Terrell, it took her a few minutes to catch up again.  How fast is this thing going?  A hundred and fifty miles an hour or something?

The woman held out her hand again, shooting bolts of electricity at her.  Fiona hovered back, realizing the arcing bolts never reached beyond fifty feet.  I’ll get to you in a second!

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She dove into the ocean; the water hit her shield, forced around it as she continued to fly through the liquid.  Wow, my Wind Shield is eating my energy like a buffet under here!  She activated Light Globe, a ball of white light appeared at her side; similar to her fireball, it kept an even distance with her body, unhindered by the water.

Flinging it forward, she activated its effect, wincing as a blast of light illuminated the dark sea.  Her eyes quickly adjusted, and that’s when she saw him; a green-skinned man with a turtle shell on his back.  He shielded his eyes as if the light bothered him. Is that a Kappa?  If only chat could see this…

Darting toward him, she activated Water Prison as she neared; two spherical vortexes spun into existence around him, trapping the Kappa in the center of the swirling mixture.  Using Levitate, she pulled him out of the water; the constant drain of Wind Shield dying down. She glared at the fish-man as he spun in circles in the Water Prison.

“You guys are so annoying!”  She growled, aura mixing with light blue, she activated Freeze.  The vortex began to crystallize from the outside in until only the block remained; she released Levitate, letting the chunk of ice fall into the ocean.

Following it, her aura tinted yellow.  “Four down, five to go.” She sent a bolt of electricity at the ice, cracking it in several pieces; the Kappa split in half, frozen innards evident.  Twenty percent…

Rising, she found Terrell’s boat and launched toward it.  The woman was keeping a sharp eye on her bright green glow as she approached, sending balls of lighting at her.  You seriously think you’re going to hit a Fairy three inches tall with those attacks?  If I didn’t shine, you wouldn’t see me coming at all!

She activated Water Prison, but the boat was moving too fast for the vortex to catch.  Teeth latched together, Fiona created a fireball with Inferno, throwing it at the boat.  They curved left, causing the fireball to strike the ocean; a massive burst of steam whipped past her, shield forcing it around as her hair whipped at her back.

Marcus and Terrell were yelling at each other as Fiona curved around an arc of electricity, flying in closer to the boat, she readied another Inferno.  However, a shell appeared around the top layer of the vehicle.

“Seriously?”  Fiona yelled, flinging the fireball at the shield.  The burst of flames just flowed around it, quickly dying off as the wind blew it back.  The electric bolts continued to assault her, passing through the inside of the honeycomb shell without issue, a few striking her shield.  So cheap!

“That’s it!”  She growled. Diving into the water, she moaned at the hit her energy took as she raced under the boat.  Try to dodge this!  Forming an Ice Spear, she threw it up through the bottom; suddenly, the vehicle vanished.

“Huh?”  Launching back up, she broke the surface.  “Where the crap did it go? Wait … he can teleport the entire boat?”  She rose further into the air, scanning the horizon, clicking her tongue as she spotted it at least a mile away.  Freaking … they just don’t know when to die!

Back in pursuit, she raced toward them, insides boiling.  I penetrated their hull, so it’s over!  Reaching the boat, she found it dead in the water.  Terrell and his sons were gone, only the woman and healer left.  She shot a bolt of electricity at her, but Fiona activated a Wind Wall, which resisted the energy with ease.  Maybe I should have used a wall in front of the boat from the start or shocked its engine…

The woman looked desperate, but the man seemed to know his fate.  Activating Water Prison, she watched the woman scream as the vortex shot out to envelop her.  Spinning in the liquid, Fiona watched her choke as she rose into the air with Levitate.

Turning her attention to the man as he stood, the boat began to sink.  “Well,” he said matter-of-factly. “It seems we lost. I’ve been in this business long enough to know when to bow out, and when it’s your time, it’s your time.  Being a surgeon for the criminals of Miami, I’ve seen a lot of things, but the ferocity and complete lack of hesitation you’ve shown? If you were just a normal girl before this, then I’m astonished.”  That’s because of Warpath, and it won’t quit until I kill Terrell … if I don’t do it fast, I die of energy loss.

Fiona huffed.  “Where did they teleport?”

“I couldn’t tell you if I wanted to,” the man smiled peacefully.

Teeth clenched, Fiona seethed a breath.  These monsters … I seriously need to kill Terrell!  I only have fourteen percent of my energy left.

“Are you sure you can’t help me?”  Fiona asked, creating an Ice Spear, she threw it through the woman’s chest as she spun in the vortex.  The water broke as she released the spell, the woman’s corpse collapsing against the back of the boat before sliding into the ocean wake.

He watched the woman’s body sink below the waves as the water reached his knees.  “I’m afraid not, little monster.”

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Growling, Fiona sent a rod of ice through his chest.  “Monster? You’re the monsters.” She watched him follow the woman into his watery grave.  Six down, three to go.

Floating above the scene, she scanned the dark night.  How are they floating without the boat … well, that makes this easy.  A smile lit her lips as she caught sight of a glowing honeycomb shell before it vanished, appearing two miles back toward Miami Beach.  She followed them at top speed. Sitting ducks in the ocean; Terrell’s worse than a cockroach, he just doesn’t know when to quit.

Diving on top of them, they didn’t even see her coming.  Her Ice Spear broke through the glowing shell, penetrating Daran’s chest; he didn’t have time to scream as blood bubbled up his throat.  Marcus’ shield broke as he gurgled, blood gushing from his mouth, chest convulsing. Terrell was sweating profusely as he stared up at her in horror, uttering a curse.

Using Levitate, she picked them up, raising them to her level.  “Your men were far less crude,” Fiona smiled wickedly as she dangled Daran’s corpse in front of him.  “Your little escape pass is gone; say goodbye to your son.” She dropped him into the ocean, waves swallowing him.

“No…”  Terrell began to quake as he followed his son’s descent, tears falling down his cheeks.

Fiona’s brow knitted together.  “Huh? How many families did you kill, children, parents, grandparents?  Are only your sons worth something?” She huffed, summoning another shard.

“Please…”

She didn’t hesitate, shooting it through Marcus’ chest, he fell limp, blood freezing before it had a chance to fall.  “Huh? I didn’t hear you past all the screams I remember. Kids, screaming for their parents, women for their husbands, boyfriends, and children.  The men’s screams of outrage and pain. You gave those to me. Well, I’m returning the favor.”

Activating Inferno, she held up her fist-sized flame.  “Give your boys my regards when you see them.” She tossed the flame at him and watched his skin smolder as he caught fire, burning alive.

Fiona watched the man that had scarred her mind with sounds and visions of death burn until his cries ceased, Warpath ending.  Well, it’s over.  I’m sure Scarlet took care of things on her end.

Her eyes widened.  “Crap! Rachel didn’t say where we’d meet up.”  She sighed. “Well, I guess I’ll bring the body back for identification.”  She looked around at the miles of ocean between her and land, releasing another sigh.  “Guess I should start looking around for them and get some sugar…”

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