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Dark Origins
Date Set

Dark Origins is a novel set in the Matoran Universe, and is the first installment in The Hand of Fear. It details the missions of the mysterious Makuta Serrakaan, the Blood Summoner, and his history serving in Miserix's Brotherhood of Makuta.



Stars were spotted against the night sky, looking down at the peaceful coves and shorelines of the Northern Continent. The waves were reflecting the stars' radiant brightness, making a glittering shine across each wave as they beat against the rocky shores.

Darkness was spread over the island, with only the light of the stars to shed light across the treetops, turning the landscape into a pleasant, warm, and relaxing haven. The moon was full this night, its features clearly shown as it floated above the dark clouds in the night sky, the soft noise of the waves running slowly upon the shoreline, and the cool breeze echoing the sound of the billowing trees.

Two Matoran walked down the beach, hand in hand, looking into each other's eyes with a hint of romance. They stopped and looked out at the waves, and for a moment only a slight breeze could be heard. They shared this moment with glee and silence, smiling the whole time. They closed their eyes to hear the sound of the waves, as if they were a therapeutic lull to help pass the time.

This moment was to be theirs, and theirs alone. They were in heaven, as very few beautiful nights of this sort came to that particular shore of the Continent. They closed their eyes, the cool breeze blowing past their faces and through the trees, the water lapping against their feet.

Suddenly, one sound changed the scenery from wonderful to terrible. A bloodcurdling scream rang out from the forest.

The two Matoran looked to the trees to see what emitted the terrible yell, and they soon saw a being, running—or, rather, limping—at a fast pace toward them. His face was ridden with a great fear that rode his scream as it exited his open mouth. His whole body was dripping in a dark, thick liquid that slowly ran down his chest and legs, leaving a trail behind him.

The Matoran yelled and ran away from the bloody mess that the poor being was. He screamed for them to stop and help him, but they continued to run, until they were out of sight among the rocks of the shore. A sense of hopelessness clouded his mind; he believed that nothing could save him now, and that he was dead, but he hadn't let go of his earthly body yet.

He fell upon the beach and lay there screaming and crying, his tears soon mixing with the blood of his face, causing his eyes to burn. Blood poured from his open mouth, drowning out the screams of terror, and then utter silence as his body lay upon the beach.

A great shadow fell over the body, looking down to see if it had met true death. The sound of a blade being drawn melded with the sound of the waves, and then, the blade that was drawn was slowly thrust into the body, still breathing. A gurgling noise could be heard as the blade passed through one of the being's lungs, and the release of the last puff of air sprouted out of his mouth as blood filled his lungs. Then he closed his eyes, never to open them again.

The blade was slowly withdrawn out of the body, the blade being covered in blood, dripping onto the white sand. The great shadow looked down upon the corpse, and soon turned to the forest and vanished among the thick of the trees. No more noises were heard, just the waves, now red with blood, beating across the white beach.

About that same time of that night, two messengers were headed to a fortress they kept on the eastern coast of the island. They were a group of bandits that stole priceless artifacts for their own amusement and collection. They had grown into a sizable organization from only a few dozen to a couple hundred.

They kept their base on the Northern Continent, which was where all of the artifacts were stored. On rare occasions, they sold their artifacts to those who would pay a correct price. Mostly, to avoid conflict, they would sell to the Dark Hunters, and they made quite a fortune doing so.

They had stolen so many things in the recent month that they had had large bounties put on their heads, and many competed to collect such a bounty. The Shadowed One had even sent his Dark Hunters after them just to collect more money, but the great battle that ensued between the two factions lead to the deaths of eighty-seven Matoran. Now they had gone from thieves to murderers.

Unfortunately, the murders were brought to the attention of another organization, one that was much more feared and dangerous than both combined, and this organization had a reputation for dealing with such disturbances. The organization was known only as the Brotherhood of Makuta. When the news of the murders spread to the ears of their leader, he was so enraged that he sent out his deadliest servant, the one whom all Makuta respected or even feared, the one they said that no living being could kill: the Blood Summoner.

The Blood Summoner was the deadliest assassin in the entire Brotherhood, and had been known for centuries only as a myth, but the group of bandits soon found out that there were more powerful beings in the universe than the Dark Hunters. They had believed that their fortress was impregnable, but they were horribly wrong.

The two messengers that were on their way to the fortress were about to see that the myth that was the Blood Summoner was no mere myth. As they walked along the beach toward the fortress, they spoke to each other about previous conquests, most notably, their fight with the Dark Hunters.

"Whoo, the Dark Hunters can certainly put up a good fight, but hey, at least we got away with the loot."

The other messenger responded. "Yeah, and it wasn't even valuable stuff, it was only a couple of Toa stones, a few old weapons, and some ancient tablets talking about some cave with a big green pool inside of it. I mean, who really cares about that kind of stuff?"

"Yeah, it was a complete waste of time and lives. We lost thirteen guys during that fight, and they were some of the best. But I think we got, like. three of the Dark Hunters, so I guess it's an eye for an eye."

They kept bantering on about things of the same sort until they got to the front gate of the fortress. They stopped for a few seconds, expecting to be let in by their comrades. However, they got caught up in conversation and did not realize that a few seconds turned into a few minutes, and a few minutes turned into ten. Finally, one of them realized that the doors had not opened for them, and that was unusual. So he yelled over the wall to his comrades.

"Hey! We're back! Hello? Hello!"

No one answered, which was even more unusual.

"That's not right. They should be there, but they may be busy, so we'll just wait."

They waited for another five minutes, and nothing happened, and one of the messengers was getting a little worried. "Hey, maybe we should climb the wall. I mean, no one's coming, and I want to see what's going on."

"Come on, they're just out. Look; one of the ships is gone."

"Oh, yeah? Then why are there no people inside to defend the fortress? Zorron would never leave his fortress unguarded."

"Well, you have a point there. Do you have rope and a hook?"

"Yeah, but the hook's kind of rusty."

"Who cares? We just need to get up this wall. Now you have me curious."

They tied the rope to the end of the hook, and soon , after three tries, hooked it into the stone on the other side of the wall. The went up one at a time, the hook was a little bent after the first messenger was up the wall.

"Come on, it's your turn!"

"Do you see anyone up there?" yelled the other messenger in response.

"No, not yet! Come on! Hurry up!"

The last messenger was half way up the wall, until the rope gave a little jurk and he stopped, his knuckles white from strain.

"Check the hook! See if I can make it up the rest of the way!"

"It's fine, you wuss! Get up here!"

He began to climb, still unsure of his grip, so he was a bit slow. Finally, he was almost at the top when the hook gave way and the rope fell down. He screamed, as he was about to fall thirty feet to the ground, when the other messenger dove and caught him by the hand. After a little struggle, he pulled him up.

"See, no sweat."

"Shut up," said the other messenger.

After this exchange, they both went down the stairs into a small courtyard, where there was nothing out of the ordinary—except, no people. They looked around and saw no sign of foul play, no sign of anything, it was as if they had just vanished.

They met in the middle of the courtyard and both confirmed that nothing was out of the ordinary, until one of them said, "Maybe they are inside."

They both went to the doors. The doors were very large and heavy, and were usually open, but in this case they were closed. They pushed as hard as they could, but they did not open. Finally, one of them pulled out a grenade and made a gesture to the other messenger to stand back.

He threw the grenade and it blasted the door open. The flash of the explosion left them blinded for a few seconds, so they could not see into the fortress, also it was only one hour past midnight, so it was already dark enough. They walked in, and one of the messengers stepped into something cold, thick, and wet. He did not know what it was, so he just kept walking, but after only a few steps, they found out what it was.

They looked around the main hall. The place was filled with gore; blood was all over the floors, walls, and even a little on the ceiling. Bodies were lying all over the place, and they were all covered with blood. Two bodies were pinned on the walls by a sword sticking through their chests, blood dripping off of them and onto the floor. One of the bodies was hanging from the ceiling by a chain that was wrapped around it's mouth. The jaw of the body broke off from the head and came plummeting down from the high ceiling. It splattered when it hit the floor, and splashed blood onto the two messengers.

They had just been in a shocked silence, but this made them scream. They screamed until their lungs felt like bursting, and one of them slipped and fell into a puddle of blood and body parts. They eventually regained their composure and stood silent for a little while. Finally one of them broke the silence and whispered.

"What the Karzahni has happened?"

There was another awkward silence, as they just looked at all the bodies, they recognized many of them, and this made the situation only worse. The walked to a stairway and tried not to slip in the blood that covered the stairs. They got to the top of the stairs, and it was just as unsettling as before. More bodies were on the floor, a couple were cut in half, and a headless corpse was stabbed into the wall with a longsword.

They walked through the bloody mess into the main conference room. There were bodies impaled on one of the decorative spears that lined the wall. They soon went into their leaders' quarters and saw that there were no bodies on the inside, so they rushed in and shut the door behind them. They walked over to a table with many documents spread over it. They fumbled through them and looked through most of them very quickly. Eventually they found the personal journal that belonged to their leader. They opened it to the last entry and read.

"I have just received word that the raid of one of the Toa fortresses was successful. A few artifacts were retrieved, some of which were very plain and inexpensive, but a particular tablet intrigued me. However, after receiving the artifacts, I was informed that during the theft, six Dark Hunters attack my forces. I should have guessed that any dealings with them would end savagely.
"Well, at any rate, my men fought against the Dark Hunters and unwittingly caused an avalanche that destroyed a nearby Matoran village of eighty-seven inhabitants. My forces thought nothing of it, so they foolishly just let it go and did nothing to aid the Matoran. As thrilled as I was about the tablet I received, I was enraged at my strike team for causing such a disaster. They just do not see the big picture here; I only wished this to be a small theft, but now, my forces are considered nothing less than murderers! The last organization to cause a mass murder was mysteriously and gruesomely killed, none of them survived to tell the tale.
"I am moving most of the artifacts that are most valuable to a new fortress on one of the Southern Islands, as another mass murder is expected to occur. People say that no other organization can triumph over the Dark Hunters, but I know of one, and if they have received word of what happened to that Matoran village, than it may already be too late."

They looked at each other with extreme shock, as they remembered well the legend of the mass murder which he was referring to. The blame of the murder went to a mythical creature known as the Blood Summoner. As soon as the words went through their minds, they realized that they were in a Karzahni of a lot of trouble. Every corpse they had seen that day was completely drowned in blood, which was practically a calling card for the Blood Summoner. They also remembered one more major detail of each of the Blood Summoner legends, and that was that there were never any survivors.

No more words needed to be said, as they both came to the same conclusion at the same time. They both bolted for the door and ran as fast as they could, to get as far away from the fortress as possible. They ran down the stairs, slipped, and fell the rest of the way down. They both got up, covered in blood from the puddle they had just fallen into, and ran at full speed for the door.

Suddenly, they felt cold, as if the temperature had dropped. Instantly, their hearts started to beat so fast that they had to stop running for a second, even though their minds kept saying over and over again: HURRY! HURRY! GET OUT OF THERE!

This conflict only slowed them down, and they could hardly breathe. They realized that it was a lot darker in that room than when they had first entered. They heard something above them, and one of the messengers looked up at the ceiling very slowly, his heart beating out of his chest. He saw something black hanging upside down from the ceiling. It hissed, flew down, grabbed him, and flew into the shadows in an instant.

The screams of the one messenger rang off of the stone walls. There was a gurgling sound, along with the sound of flesh ripping and tearing.

The other messenger ran as fast as he could, but he felt as if he were in a dream, as if he were running in slow motion out towards the courtyard. However, as he was trapped in all of the horrible visions going through his brain, he forgot that the gate was closed, and that there was no way one person could open it. Through the fear of it all, he hurled his body into the side of the door, in a vain hope that it would somehow miraculously open, but it did not.

He fell to the ground in front of the gate. putting his back it as he sat down and screamed for someone to help him. "Help! Help! Help me! Please, someone! Please help!"

He screamed and cried in his hopelessness, and in a few seconds, he saw a tall hooded figure coming out of the shadows in the fortress. He screamed as the figure slowly approached. "OH, MATA NUI HELP ME!"

The hooded being was now close enough to touch him. "OH, MATA NUI, SOMEONE, PLEASE! HELP! AAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!"

He was going to keep screaming for someone to help him, someone to save him, but no one came, no one. He began to cough up blood, and he spewed it out as he tried to scream, but only a gurgle came instead. The tall hooded being drew a long slender sword out of his cloak and whipped it out in one very fast motion. Then all of the noise stopped, except for that of the head of the messenger hitting the floor.

The tall shadow walked up the steps to the top of the wall to oversee the outer surroundings and disappeared. There was a ship on the waters, nearing the fortress. Zorron and his forces had come back.

Zorron was looking over the ledge of his ship, gazing toward the Northern Continent. The beach shone white against the night sky, and the stars were still shining their radiance upon the black ocean. The smell of the salty sea was calming and chilling at the same time, and the crew of the ship were either asleep or barely awake.

Zorron, however, was wide awake. He was quite uneasy about what may have transpired at the fortress while he was gone, even though he had only been absent for a day. There was a dark threat growing in the back of his mind as the ship neared the docks; it was quiet, too quiet. No lights shone from the fortress, and none of his guards were on patrol. They weren't even camping on the beach like they would after a difficult theft had been accomplished.

More than one thing was out of place, and Zorron did not like it. He looked down at his knuckles and noticed that they were white from holding onto the rail so tightly. He slowly opened his hands, and his joints crackled from the strain. The stress of it all was wearing him down. But he knew he had to stay alert; he did not know exactly why, but it still was all he could think of.

Suddenly, as if he was launched from a dream, he shook as he heard his captain yell "Land ho!"

He straitened his back and slowly walked up the stairs and entered the bridge of the ship. The captain looked at Zorron and quickly stood at attention. Zorron looked unimpressed, but was pleased that he was shown his respect.

"Contact the fortress on the mainland. Tell them to bring the last shipment of artifacts down to the docks for loading," said Zorron sharply.

The captain looked at Zorron with a wince in his expression and said, "I have already attempted to contact them four times, and they have not responded, sir."

Zorron looked frustrated and said in a rather annoyed tone, "Well try again, and this time use the open channel."

The captain nodded, and did not wish to anger Zorron by telling him that he had already used the open channel, so he just tried it again. "Mainland, this is the Saluten One, over. Mainland, please respond."

There was no response for five minutes. The captain kept repeating himself, just to look formal for Zorron, when normally he would have given up by then.

Eventually, after ten minutes of attempting to contact the mainland, something came over the comm. The voice sounded gurgled, like he had something caught in his throat. His tone was urgent and hopeless. He spoke in a small whisper, and only got out two words:

"Help me..."

And then there was nothing but static. The captain looked shocked and frightened as he looked at Zorron. Zorron did not look surprised, but he showed a trace of sadness and frustration. He turned away and looked out at the fortress; it was completely dark, and rather dead-looking, as if no one had visited it for a thousand years.

The ship had already docked, and the sound of the waves was all that could be heard. While still facing away from the captain, Zorron mumbled a command to the captain in his anger.

"Send out the scouts. I want them armed and ready for a quick escape. Tell them to flee to the ship should anything go very wrong, and when I say that, I mean a life-and-death situation."

The captain nodded and went down the stairs and onto the deck, where he called the scouts. He had them armed with poison darts, flash grenades, and Dragon rifles, which could take down a Muaka in one hit.

They walked onto the dock and quickly advanced into the forest, heading toward the fortress and using the trees as cover. Zorron did not like them going into the darkened forest, as it was a clear disadvantage, seeing as it was already dark enough. He looked out and squinted so that he might see just a little better, but as soon as the final scout disappeared into the forest, it turned into a waiting game.

He closed his eyes and listened, and waited. Nothing happened. There was nothing, absolutely nothing. After a few minutes, he called on one of the communicators and said, "Strike team one, do you read me? Over."

There was a quick response from the leader of the strike team. "I read you loud and clear, sir."

"What's your status?" replied Zorron.

"Well sir, it's a lot darker than we thought it would be, but I had the others spread out so that we wouldn't bump into each other, so we should be clear. It's a lot darker than I had thought when I entered the forest; I should have brought the night vision goggles to see. I think unit three has one in his pack. Unit three, I need to borrow one of your night vision...

"Unit three? Come in. Come on, man, I can't see you in this dark... Wait, what's that up there at the top of that tree? I saw something move. Unit three? Where are you? Unit three, I need you to respond..."

Suddenly, there was only static. Zorron looked out toward the black forest, and saw nothing. He waited for a little bit, and then he heard a loud BANG! from the forest. He then heard it again: BANG! BANG! and again BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! It was undoubtedly the sound of the Dragon rifle that he armed his troops with, and if one shot did not take down the intended target, they had a very large problem.

Suddenly he actually saw something. It was a small flash inside the forest, which illuminated the darkness for about three seconds. It must have been one of the grenades. A few seconds later, he heard more shots from the Dragon rifle, followed by a long chilling scream from one of the scouts. More shots were fired, and more screams were heard. Zorron was a little shaken by this, and so he looked at the captain and said, "Send out the next strike team! NOW! I want them armed with concussive grenades and RPGs. NOW!"

Before the captain could summon a reply, a titanic wave came from the sea and slammed against the ship. knocking it on its side and crushing the dock. Zorron and a few of his soldiers were able to swim far enough away from the ship before the underwater drag of the sinking ship pulled them under.

They went along the beach and knelt down, breathing hard. Thirteen soldiers survived the sinking of the ship, and thirty-three had gone down with it. Zorron was very sure exactly what they were up against, as things of the sort did not happen coincidentally.

He stood up and looked up at the night sky, and by the position of the moon, he determined that dawn was only about an hour away. He only hoped that he and his men would survive long enough.

He pulled out his desert five, which has a very powerful shot. The only problem was that he had only fourteen shots with it. He kept it close by, just in case he should have to whip it out quickly.

He then made the decision that they would make a final attempt to reach the fortress. Once there, he would activate the distress signal and use it to draw any neighboring ships to his aid. The main problem was reaching the fortress, as the scouts seemed to all have been killed—or so he thought, until he heard another scream coming from the forest. He jumped up and ran toward the forest, making wild signals with his hands for his soldiers to follow.

They all ran into the forest and looked for the scout that was last heard, as the scream did not seem very far off. They walked around and looked for him, sweat dripping from their bodies just out of sheer nervousness, as they turned in circles after just about every step. However, the direction they did not look, and the only direction they should have been looking, was up.

Zorron decided to leave his men to find the scout, so that he could go to the fortress and find that tablet. He had foolishly left it there, and he knew that it was of some significance, and many people would like to get their hands on it. So, as soon as he got his bearings, he ran out of the forest and ended up right near the front gate. Blood ran out from under the gate, and pooled right where he had just placed his foot.

Zorron was not completely disturbed by this, but it did comfort him, as he knew that more things of the sort were bound to be inside the fortress. However, since the front gate was closed, he had to find another way in, and seeing as he was the one who had the fortress built, he knew exactly where to look.

He walked around the side of the outer wall from the gate, and made sure to carefully count the paces he took. After slowly running his hand down the wall, he stopped at fifty paces, and looked up and down the wall. Eventually, after a little searching, he found a certain brick that had a particular symbol on it. He pressed his hand onto the brick and pushed, and a gap opened in the brick just a few feet above his head.

He reached up and was about to go into the passage when he heard the sound of more Dragon rifles going off. BANG, BANG BANG! Each time, they got louder, meaning the shots were coming closer! He leaped into the passage and turned a knob in the side of the wall, closing the door behind him.

He began to climb up the stairs until he finally reached another door. He pushed and it revolved to where, as soon as he walked through, it shut behind him. The secret door was hidden behind a very tall statue, and it would be difficult to find it without knowledge of its whereabouts.

He soon went into his chamber and began to rummage through some tablets he had on his table, and it was gone! It had vanished! He cursed aloud at the disappearance of such an important document, and kept looking. He had practically ransacked his chamber looking for it, but it just wasn't there.

He heard footsteps slowly advancing on the stone floor. He whipped out his Desert five and aimed it at the door. He saw the knob turn, and the door opened slowly. Zorron immediately fired one shot, and then he heard a body hit the floor.

He slowly went into the next room and saw the being he had shot. It was one of his soldiers. He dropped to one knee to see if he could feel a pulse in his wrist, and he felt a very small one. But then the soldier coughed up a lot of blood and spit it on the floor, and he was trying to say something to Zorron.

Zorron listened and tried to make out what the soldier was telling him, and he only made out two words. As the soldier coughed up blood, he said to Zorron, "Behind you."

Zorron looked behind him as he quickly stood up and saw a tall figure, far taller than his soldiers. It was cloaked in black robes, and a hood hid its countenance from sight. He backed up against a table in the meeting room and noticed that there was a body impaled on one of the decorative spears.

The hooded figure slowly advanced, and Zorron whipped out his Desert five, unloading the rounds. BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! Click, click, click.

He ran out of shots! Panic struck him, and he turned tail and ran as fast as he could down a near flight of stairs, trying not to slip in the puddles of blood. He got to the bottom of the staircase and kept running, only barely noticing the gore that was spread out all over the room. He ran through the front door and saw that the gate was now crashed to the ground, and so he sprinted over it and into the forest.

He did not stop once, even when he slammed through the sharp brush that cut him all over his legs and upper body, but he ignored all of that pain and kept running. He looked at some of the trees and realized that blood was pouring slowly down the side of them, but he did not dare look up to see what the cause of it was. He eventually ran out to the beach, out to the ocean, and then he stopped, breathless, as he realized the situation.

There was no longer a boat, the dock was obliterated, and he had nowhere else to run. He then decided that he would have to meet his fate, or share the gruesome end of his comrades.

He looked back toward the forest and saw a black shape inside, almost completely blending into the shadows. In a blur, the shadow rushed toward him. He closed his eyes, not wishing to see what was going to happen to him. But then, nothing.

He opened his eyes to see the tall black shape standing in front of him, looking down with cold red eyes. It did not move for a few seconds. Then it grabbed him and lifted him off the ground by his neck, and once again stared him straight in the eyes.

Suddenly, the shadow released him and let him fall to the ground, disappearing back into the forest. Zorron fell almost unconscious, and then the sun came out.

Zorron felt relief from the sunlight, as if it protected him from the shadow. But he also had one other feeling, and that feeling was that this was not the last time he would see the shadow face-to-face, and that feeling chilled him to his bones.

With this, he fell into unconsciousness, letting the water lap against his feet, and the sound of the waves consume the horrific screams he had heard earlier that night. And he would never forget them, for the rest of his life he would know that the myth of the Blood Summoner was no mere myth.

Chapter 1: Dark Silence[]

Two days earlier.

The sun was barely starting to set, its shine turning the clouds a pinkish and bluish tint, marking the end of yet another day. The beautiful colors reflected off of the waves as they crashed against the rocky shoreline of an island called Destral.

Destral was usually a quiet place, one that seemed to have absolutely no inhabitants, but the fact was quite the contrary. In fact, one hundred intelligent beings lived there. These beings called each other brothers, but they were more so brothers than Toa; they were only limited to one hundred, not only on the island, but in the entire universe itself. They were close together, they all knew things about each other, and everyone knew everybody's name.

However, they did not live spread thin across the island, but in a massive fortress that towered above the clouds. But just the idea that they were the same species did not mean that they had the same personalities. In fact, the truth was quite the opposite. Some Makuta were more outgoing and less hostile to their brothers, and others were rather closed off to the others, not revealing much to the others about themselves, but still affiliated themselves with each other.

There were a very few that did not even speak to others and kept completely to themselves. One of these Makuta was named Serrakaan.

Serrakaan was always cold and distant, and never socialized with any accept the leader of the Brotherhood. He was a little more than mysterious, and other Makuta would talk about him as if he were a completely different species entirely. However, for one so outcast, he certainly made quite a name for himself among the Brotherhood as the chief assassin.

Miserix, who led the Brotherhood, always looked to Serrakaan to pass out justice to those who needed to be reminded of the order of things. And by justice, Miserix always meant the penalty of death. There were some cases in which death was not a required punishment, but when it was, Serrakaan usually carried out that sentence.

This was the reason that Miserix summoned him tonight, for Serrakaan's job was unceasing.

As the sun went down, more noises could be heard around the fortress. Gorast and Zygirld were training in one of the combat practice rooms. Mutran and Chirox were working on a new breed of Rahi that would help as transports for the Matoran. Tridax was looking at various maps of other islands, while Antroz sat in his quarters, sharpening one of his many blades. Vamprah walked around the fortress, making his silent rounds, as he too was antisocial. Benjarmin was speaking with Gothmogg about certain events that had occurred in Metru Nui. Teridax and Terradon were biding their time in the library of forbidden knowledge. And Miserix was speaking with Icarax concerning a mission.

All of these Makuta had their own agendas. However, Serrakaan never left his quarters unless he was summoned by Miserix. Serrakaan's quarters were not even located where the others were; his was located deep under the fortress of Destral, in the catacombs, and there he stayed. He did not care for anything or anyone—only himself. He was usually selfish with his time, and never socialized with the other Makuta.

Serrakaan sat in his quarters, looking at his numerous trophies he had hanging from the wall. He had received a mission from Miserix earlier that day. A tablet was sent down to his quarters with all of Miserix's instructions on it. He picked up the tablet and read it carefully, as he wanted no misunderstanding as to how the mission was to be carried out.

A group of bandits have been on the loose for quite some time. Normally I would ignore petty thefts like the ones they have been committing, but three days ago, things turned rather violent between them and the Dark Hunters. In the ensuing battle, the bandits set off a bomb in order to escape, and the explosion caused an avalanche. It interrupted the battle and allowed them to escape, but it also tumbled the rest of the way down the mountain and utterly destroyed the Matoran village below.
Many Matoran died, in the disaster that followed. They have now crossed the line from becoming thieves to mass murderers, and I want them to pay penance. I have decided that the world needs to be reminded that such things will not be tolerated, and so I've decided not to leave this mission to the Dark Hunters, because I want guaranteed results. Do what you will to them, but I want all of them killed.
Also, they have foolishly stolen an important tablet from one of our abandoned fortresses on Stelt. Apparently, it was left behind, and the tablet states the location of a very large pool of energized Protodermis. I want it back. If it were to fall into the wrong hands, many dangerous consequences would occur.
Your targets are both on the eastern end of the Northern Continent. Return in no less than three days; I may have another mission for you.

Serrakaan placed the tablet down onto a stone table and rose out of his chair. He left that room and walked down several stairways, until he got to a room with a large stone table in the center of it. On this table was laid out a huge map of the Matoran universe. It showed the climate and placement of every island in all of its detail.

He looked at the Northern Continent on the eastern side. It was perfectly secluded, and not near to many Matoran villages. It was perfect for his mission. No one would interfere with the mission because it was supposed to be a secret fortress, so who would know to look for it? And also, no one would go to help them, no matter how loud they screamed. This would bring him so much more pleasure. He could let them scream as loud as it suited them, and it would be completely useless.

Serrakaan took pleasure from hearing the screams of his victims, and the more there were, the more therapeutic it would be to him. It gave him so much pleasure that going on a mission would almost not even be worth it without the screams. He believed that a scream for life was the most intriguing thing there was. No matter how loud they screamed, life was still going to leave them. Their final screams were so full of despair, as they marked the end of their sinful lives.

It gave him pleasure to end each and every one of them. Not only this, but he was given the authority to do so. It made the task his responsibility, a responsibility that also gave him pleasure.

He strayed away from his thoughts and back to the task at hand, going to a large statue of himself at the opposite end of the room. The statue was holding a sword that was facing up. Serrakaan reached out his hand and turned the sword so it faced downward. Suddenly, the statue slid aside, and created another portal to walk through.

He stepped down through several stairways and into a final room. There was a large stone box in the center, and many blades were hanging on the wall. He looked at one of them--it was a longsword, slender, light, and strong. He could wield it with unparalleled speed, and with it, he could slay any who tried to hinder him. There was script carved into the blade written in an unknown language. The blade sunk into the hilt, and Serrakaan passed the hilt up his sleeve. He was now prepared for his mission.

He walked out, and the statue slid back to its former place ay front of the door. He then walked through many different rooms, and got to the front door of his quarters. He walked out of his quarters and shut the door behind him. He traveled through many tunnels until he got to a rather large door. The door opened on his arrival, he walked past it, and it shut fast behind him. In front of him was a large pool of energized Protodermis, and above the pool was a trap door that came from the throne room.

He walked around the pool of Energized Protodermis and went up a secret passage that was hidden behind one of the Brotherhood's tapestries in the fortress. He walked down another hallway and passed the Convocation Chamber. Eventually, he went into the throne room and went out of the main gate. The Visorak shivered at his presence, as did the Rahkshi.

He walked to the coast of the island until he finally got to the rocky beach. He stopped and looked out at the ocean. It was time to travel to the Northern Continent. Suddenly, Serrakaan disappeared in the blink of an eye.

Serrakaan arrived on the Northern Continent. The sun had just gone down, and the moon rose into the sky. Dark clouds eclipsed some of its radiant light, barely casting a shadow on the beach from Serrakaan's countenance. Serrakaan soon walked into the darkened forest and got a good look at the fortress. It was vast, but not nearly the size of the fortress on Destral, so navigation was not bound to be difficult. He noticed that there were several guards walking around the outside walls. He decided to take them out first, and to do so silently.

He swooped out of the forest, caught one by the throat, and swooped right back into the darkened forest. His quick movements made him only a black blur, and he had caught the last one in the line of guards, so no one knew he was gone. When Serrakaan got back into the forest, he squeezed his claws into the guard's neck. Blood sprayed out of the opened wound, and the guard was only able to make a small squeak before he bled to death. He opened his hand and the guard fell, dead.

The other four guards would be a simple matter. Serrakaan hovered over them and picked them off one by one, only seconds apart, and three seconds later, there was only one guard left. The other guard turned around, and did not see anyone behind him. He let out a shocked squeal and dropped his gun. Serrakaan swooped down then, grabbed the guard, and flew into the forest.

The other three guards were covered in blood, hanging from small branches high in the trees, as when Serrakaan had grabbed each one, he embedded his claws all the way through their lungs and out the other side of their body, the reason being that if he perforated their lungs, they could not scream, thus not giving away his presence... yet.

After deserting the bodies in the forest, he flew over the wall and into the courtyard. There were crates all over the place filled with different artifacts, but not the one he was looking for in particular. He assumed that it was under heavy guard somewhere in the fortress, so that was the next place he was headed. However, from the sound of it, the inside of the fortress was full of people--or, from Serrakaan's point of view, potential victims.

Suddenly, the door of the fortress opened. Serrakaan flew over the courtyard and perched on one of the higher walls, looking down at the guards with anticipation like a cliff screecher about to swoop down on its prey. One of the guards walked out into the courtyard, alone. Serrakaan, like the cliff screecher, flew down, grabbed his victim, and sunk his claws into his body. The guard tried to scream, but Serrakaan had already stabbed his lungs with the first strike, so the only noise that came from him was the gurgling of him coughing up blood.

Serrakaan landed on the wall and dropped the body over the side. He looked back toward the main door and inside the fortress from there. He saw that there were about thirty guards in the main entry hall, and he decided that it was time to make his presence known.

Serrakaan saw another bandit coming outside, and so decided that he would not make any effort to muffle his scream. Serrakaan leapt on top of the unsuspecting bandit and smashed his body to the ground. The sound of bones snapping from the impact echoed all over the stone walls of the main hall. Serrakaan stood tall in the doorway, looking at his targets. They all looked back at him, mouths open wide, not believing what they had just seen.

After about three seconds of staring, the bandits raised their weapons. Serrakaan activated the power of his mask, immediately seeing a change in the expression of each of the bandits. The look of fear paralyzed them for another few seconds, and Serrakaan took advantage of this and sped into the crowd. He unsheathed his blade and struck down three guards in three seconds, one right after the other, cutting huge gouges in the chests of the first two and decapitating the last one. Many of the guards knelt, coughing up blood and spewing it out all over the floor.

Serrakaan was like a shadowy blur. He was flying around the room, killing people with mere slashes to the chest that were mostly fatal, but if they were already bleeding, then his mask would take an extra effect upon them. Many bandits were already dead on the floor, with gouges ripped out of their chests and a few without their heads. Most of the guards were making for the doorway to escape, but Serrakaan got to them before they could even set foot outside. Most of the guards were now running frantically around the room, screaming and trying not to slip and fall in puddles of blood.

There were, however, a few guards that summed up the courage to attack Serrakaan, two of whom ran straight for him at the same time. Serrakaan dodged their attacks, grabbed both guards by the face, and threw them in opposite directions. They let go of their blades in midair as they slammed against the wall seconds later. Before their blades even hit the ground, Serrakaan caught them and threw them right into the chests of the guards. The swords impaled them and embedded themselves into the wall. Now there were two guards hanging on the walls by swords sticking through their chests, with blood running down their bodies from the fatal wounds.

Another guard ran towards Serrakaan, swinging a chain at high speeds around his head, with which he tried to hit him. Serrakaan neatly dodged out of the way and and used magnetism to slightly alter the direction that the chain was spinning. The chain wrapped itself around the guard's mouth at full speed. Serrakaan then directed the other end of the chain up to the ceiling at a great speed, yanking the guard off of his feet and snapping his neck. His head would have come off had the chain and his body not stopped when they struck the ceiling, but his body did not fall all the way back down; instead, the chain was embedded into the stone ceiling, with the guard hanging by his mouth at the other end.

Many more guards came running down the stairs and surrounded Serrakaan. They were all shivering in their armor, but they believed that the only way to kill him was together. They were sadly mistaken; Serrakaan was slaying them faster than they could come. More bodies, arms, heads, weapons, and internal organs could be heard hitting the floor.

Serrakaan grew bored of all of them surrounding him, and so, instead of using his blade to defeat his new opponents, he used one of his most powerful assets, his scream. Serrakaan launched a power scream that shook the room. The guards all around Serrakaan exploded in a bloody wave that splattered blood all over the room. For a moment, there was silence, and then Serrakaan heard someone get up and start running. One of the guards had apparently survived, and was making a run for it.

The gate was already open, so the guard flew past it and into the forest. He kept running until he accidentally tripped over one of the guards that Serrakaan had killed earlier. This made the guard scream even more, but he still got up and kept running. He ran out of the forest and out onto the beach, where he saw two Matoran. He screamed for their help, but just his horrific look made them run away, as he was covered in blood.

Serrakaan watched as the fool fell on the beach, and the Matoran wisely ran away. He was still breathing, so his wounds had not been fatal enough. Serrakaan slowly walked over to his position, his gaze never turning away from the soldier just in case he tried to run again. Serrakaan slowly drew his blade and pointed it down at the guard's back. Then, slowly and painfully, he inserted his blade into the guard's back, through his lungs, and out the other end of his body and into the sand. Serrakaan heard a little puff of air come from the guards mouth: the last breath taken by the victim.

Serrakaan slowly withdrew the blade, covered in blood that dripped onto the white sand. He then slid the blade into the folds of his cloak while he looked down upon the corpse, and then decided to go back to the fortress to find the tablet.

He teleported back into the courtyard of the fortress. He closed the outer gate and the door to the main hall behind him so the grisly scene could not be visible from the outside. He then walked through the main hall, his cloak running through the bloody puddles along the floor, and went up one of the few staircases and into a conference room. He walked forward, noticing the decorative spears sticking outward from high up on the wall.

He saw that the door at the opposite end of the room was open, and out came a guard wielding two daggers. He spun them with impressive skill as he leapt onto the table in the center of the room and charged at Serrakaan. Serrakaan was amused by this, but he still had to slay the guardian. With a little portion of his power, he forced the guard to suddenly fly into the air and slam against the ceiling, and on the way back down, the guard was impaled by one of the spears.

Serrakaan continued forward into the next room, where there was a large table with many artifacts on it. Serrakaan was only interested in one: the tablet. He picked it up and looked at it; it was indeed the one Miserix wanted. He placed it in the folds of his cloak and then teleported outside and on the beach. His task was over--or so he thought.

He saw two guards, similar to the one he had killed earlier, climbing the outside wall. One of Serrakaan's policies regarding missions was to never leave any witnesses, so his job was not yet done. He flew upward to one of the higher walls and looked down at them; they were trying to get inside of the fortress. They eventually blew open the door with a grenade and entered. Then as soon as they walked inside, there was a loud thud and a splashing noise, followed by long screams.

Serrakaan felt a hint of pleasure with this, until at last the screams halted, and the two guards continued up the same staircase he traveled up earlier. He flew down into the main hall and saw what made them scream: the body that was chained to the ceiling fell and landed right in front of them. The splashing sound was, needless to say, the blood that it had landed in.

After a few minutes of this observation, Serrakaan heard a loud yell upstairs. He flew upwards and onto the ceiling, looking down. He saw the two soldiers fall down the stairs and into another bloody mess. Serrakaan then darkened the room so they would have trouble seeing him. He activated his mask, but only slightly. The guards both got up and walked slowly toward the door. One of them stopped right under Serrakaan, and foolishly looked up.

Serrakaan felt that it was the time to strike, as he flew down and embedded his claws through the stomach of the guard right under him. A second later, he flew into the shadows with the guard, clamped his fangs onto the guard's neck, and ingested his life force, energizing him. He also ingested blood--not that he needed it, but he just preferred it more than other liquids where consumption was concerned. After the guard was drained dry of both blood and life-energy, Serrakaan turned to find the other guard.

The guard had run to the outer gate and was now banging on the door, screaming for help. Serrakaan tore his claws out of the other guard's corpse and slowly walked toward the terrified guard at the gate. He was screaming for Serrakaan to stop, but Serrakaan just increased the power of his mask to silence the fool. The guard spewed up blood as he fell to the ground in front of Serrakaan. Serrakaan then unsheathed his blade and decapitated the guard. The corpse rested in a large pool of blood.

Serrakaan had once again killed the last guard in the area, or so he hoped, until he flew up to the wall and saw a ship headed that way. He then flew into the forest and watched from the shadows, seeing if the boat was going to dock. He may have more victims just yet.

Sure enough, the boat did dock. Serrakaan could see the people on the boat gathering on the deck, getting ready to go into the forest. Serrakaan flew up into one of the trees so he could have the advantage of surprise against his foes. Soon enough, they ran out on the dock and onto the beach. They formed a line of defense and slowly walked into the forest. Serrakaan looked down on his victims below, and was pleased to see that they were beginning to get separated. This would make his job far easier in regards to killing them.

As they walked, Serrakaan slowly flew to another tree and positioned right over one of the scouts. He flew down and dragged him back up into the tree, his claws once again piercing his lungs so no screams could be heard. After he had finished off the scout, he impaled him on a branch sticking out of the tree and moved on to his next victim.

He repeated the process several more times in succession. However, the lead scout noticed one of his men were missing and reported it back to the ship. The lead scout looked right up at the tree Serrakaan was positioned in and squinted his eyes. Serrakaan knew that he had been spotted, so he flew down, caught the guard, and flew up into the tree. The last thing the scout saw were several of his comrades impaled on the branches of nearby trees, and soon, he felt what it was like.

Blood exploded from the wound, falling down below and landing on one of the remaining scouts. The scout looked puzzled for a moment, then he began to look up and around him wildly until he saw Serrakaan in the tree and lost it. He screamed out loud, but found that he could not say anything, and only air came from his mouth with no noise to be heard. He raised his Dragon rifle and unloaded with careless shots, which attracted the other scouts.

In a blur, Serrakaan leapt down and grabbed the scout, as his comrades were coming in that direction. They saw what the thought was just a black blur slam into their comrade, and they began to unload their rifles. Serrakaan felt a few of the bullets hit his armor and bounce off. They were not much of a problem, except for the fact that their constant fire was causing too much attention.

The forest went from dark to pitch black. The scouts could not even see where they were shooting; they couldn't even see their hands in front of their faces. One of the guards just kept shooting anyway, and accidentally shot one of his comrades. Another guard threw a flash grenade to the ground in hopes of illuminating the forest for at least a few seconds. The forest lit up, and the scout looked behind him to see Serrakaan. Serrakaan sliced his head right off with one swipe of his blade and then stabbed one of the other scouts.

They started once again to unload their Dragon rifles, but in a futile effort. They finally stopped shooting when they started to bleed from various places, but then they screamed in agony as their bodies tore themselves apart. A bloody explosion covered the trees with the dark liquid, and also spelled the end for three more scouts. Only one was left, and he was running wildly, not even looking where he was going.

Serrakaan did not see him yet, and instead looked out at the ship to see the captain running up to the bridge, trying to head out to sea. Serrakaan could not let that happen, as this would jeapordize his mission. In response, Serrakaan called upon a massive wave from the ocean. This wave completely overturned the ship and destroyed the dock. However, this did not kill them all. There were still more scouts that survived and swam ashore, including the leader of the bandits himself.

It was then when Serrakaan spotted the last scout that had survived his ambush. He was going to make sure he was dead this time. He leapt in front of him, and the scout froze. After a second of staring, he screamed as loud as he could, but Serrakaan soon silenced the scream by grabbing the throat and squeezing. His fingers slowly went past the flesh and around the top of his spine, blood seeping from the wound. Serrakaan then let him go, and blood flowed from of the open wound as he fell to the ground.

The other bandits must have heard the scream, and started to run into the forest. Serrakaan ascended to the treetops and looked down at the last victims of his mission. The leader of the scouts was not seen, but he was somewhere nearby. The scouts were aligned in a circle, so they could see all around them, and no one could go off by themselves unless given permission by Zorron. However, there was not any permission given, so they were all just standing in a circle waiting for the worst--and the worst soon came.

Serrakaan leapt down in the middle of the circle and stabbed two of them with his blades, then he whirled around and decapitated the two across from him. Dragon rifles were going off sporadically, and they were doing little to no good. All of them were screaming in a fearful agony that made them want to kill themselves. Blood was spewed from their mouths, and their screams were muffled by the sound of a blade slicing quickly through flesh. Soon, the entire circle was reduced to a fallen gory mess. None survived except their leader, who was not anywhere to be seen, but Serrakaan knew a good place to look for him.

He teleported to the front of the fortress, and sure enough, two guards were waiting at the front gate. They raised their rifles, but just looking at the tall, dark shadow froze them to the bone. The temperature seemed to drop very quickly, and they began to feel weak in the knees. They slowly exhaled, trying not to make any noise, but blood came from their nostrils, and they could not breathe in again. They opened their mouths trying to gasp for air, but their lungs were already full of blood. They fell to their knees and were spewing up blood, hoping to get it all out of their lungs, but it did not help. Serrakaan grabbed one of them by the throat and threw him through the gate, knocking the large doors down off the hinges. He whipped his blade across and decapitated the guard that was kneeling in front of the gate.

He walked through the gate and into the courtyard. He then teleported into the fortress and walked up the stairs into the next room. He saw Zorron rummaging through several tablets and artifacts, looking for the particular tablet that he had taken earlier. He walked into the room right behind Zorron. As Zorron turned around and shot at the door, he flew to the ceiling and killed one of his soldiers.

Zorron went to the fallen soldier and to see if he had survived, Serrakaan leapt down behind him. The foolish guard told Zorron to look behind him, and when Zorron did, he rose up and unloaded his Desert 5. The bullets barely affected Serrakaan at all, and he kept walking toward him. Zorron turned and fled as fast as he could. Serrakaan let him run and teleported to the forest, waiting for him.

He saw Zorron run past the tree he was in, and was about to leap down and kill him when something clicked in the back of his mind, as if he were disinclined to actually kill him. He watched Zorron run out to the beach and stop, as if he had finally realized that there was no escape. This pleased Serrakaan, and he rushed out and stopped right in front of Zorron. He grabbed Zorron by the throat and lifted him up, looking straight into his eyes.

He then saw visions involving Zorron's future--a power Serrakaan could utilize by staring straight into one's eyes. He let Zorron go--he saw something in his future that would benefit him if he let him live. Serrakaan dropped him, then turned and went into the forest, knowing that it would not be the last time he met Zorron.

He then teleported off the island, as his mission was complete, and now he headed back to Destral so that he could report his success to Miserix. Serrakaan wondered if Miserix's next mission would be as pleasing as this one--he was hoping it would.

Chapter 2: Makuta Courtesance[]

Serrakaan's tall, hooded shape cast a large shadow on one of the gates in the wall surrounding the Destral fortress. He had just gotten back from his mission, and he had been quite successful. He knew well that Miserix would be pleased, as the fools had completely wiped out from the face of the world. He had a feeling that Miserix would not like that he had spared their leader, but perhaps that information he would keep to himself.

The gate opened, as the sun was just going down, and Serrakaan walked past the gate to be greeted by Pridak, who had a very fearful look on his face. Serrakaan was not fazed by this, as that was the look he normally got. However, he did not like how Pridak thought that just because he served Makuta Icarax, he was untouchable. Pridak held onto the fact that Icarax did not want him dead, and therefore no one would stand against him. As Serrakaan looked him straight in the eye, it turned out that that theory was wrong.

Pridak, swallowed down his fear--or at least, some of it--took a deep breath, and spoke to Serrakaan. "Miserix would like to... um... speak with you on... um... the success of your mission."

Pridak rolled his eyes; even he knew that he sounded like he was five feet away from a doom viper; however, he could not control his stutters and pauses. However, he felt embarrassed when Makuta Gorast walked by, looked at Serrakaan, then at Pridak, and walked away chuckling. This was a low and subtle blow, and in front of Tridax no less. So when Serrakaan started to walk to the main gate of the fortress, he spat out these last words:

"Unless, of course, you did not complete your mission!"

Serrakaan stopped in his tracks, and at the same time Gorast and Tridax both looked at Pridak with a shocked but excited look, as if they were anxious to see what Serrakaan would do. Serrakaan suddenly whirled around and shot a bolt of lightning at Pridak. It struck Pridak with concussive force, and sent him flying backward. He slammed into the wall and fell to the ground, dead or unconcious. Either way, Serrakaan continued forth to the main fortress, not caring for Pridak's fate.

Serrakaan walked to the front gate and saw Icarax quickly walk to the gate where Serrakaan had left Pridak's smoking body. Icarax gave Serrakaan an angered glance as he walked past. Serrakaan did not care for this, and continued headed to the fortress.

Eventually, he came to a very large gate, where several Visorak were waiting to drive off any trespassers in the fortress. However, as soon as they saw him, they scurried away and ran from the gate, shivering. He walked into the archway, past the massive courtyard, and in front of the gate that opened into the fortress. The gate opened, he walked inside, and they closed behind him.

Miserix was waiting on his throne, and signaled to Serrakaan to come forth. Serrakaan stopped in front of him and paid his respects to him, then he waited for Miserix to speak. Miserix held out his hand and said. "Do you have it?"

Serrakaan took out a tablet from within his cloak and gave it to Miserix. Miserix looked at it with great care, as if he were studying it. He then gave a nod of approval, and looked at Serrakaan with acceptance. "You have done well. I assume that you took care of the murderers that I assigned."

Serrakaan gave an accepted nod, and did not bother to mention the one he let live.

Miserix smiled and said, "Your work is good, Serrakaan. These murderers, traitors, and thieves need to be punished, and so far, you have succeeded in doing just this. I have another assignment for you, one that will require two people to complete, and you are one of them. I am aware you do not usually partner with others for your missions; however, this will be an exception.

"You and another operative will go and take down a certain clan of mysterious thieves and traitors. They call themselves the Patrons of the Dark. They have a base on Stelt, and you are the only one I trust to complete this mission. You are to be the one to kill their agents, and stealth will not be required for this mission. There will be several captains, and they are going to be the targets of the other operative. She is your sister, Makuta Courtesance.

"But now--the details of your mission. The fortress you are going to assault is rather large, so many soldiers will be stationed through its halls. I want you to find a way to get all of them to enter the courtyard in front of the fortress, and that is when you will strike. Use whatever means necessary to kill them all. Courtesance will deal with the captains in her own manner, and then she will help you clear the rest of them away. After they are dead, return to Destral and report your success to me."

Suddenly a voice reached out from the shadows in the fortress, and said, "When do we leave?"

The voice was soft, and it almost had a seductive lull to it. It was soothing to hear, and did not inspire evil or anger, but rather peace. The one who spoke it soon stepped into the light and revealed herself as Serrakaan's new ally, Makuta Courtesance. She was tall--almost as tall as Serrakaan--and she was slim, not unpleasant to look at like Gorast or Zygirld. She bore white and dark blue armor, and her mask was not terrible or fearful, but rather, beautiful. She inspired comfort with her presence to most people, but Serrakaan knew why she was the one Miserix chose to partner him with, and that her looks were quite deceptive when it came to her combat abilities--her capabilities as an assassin.

She walked forward, gave Serrakaan a respectful nod, and then turned back to Miserix, her blue eyes staring at his. Miserix responded to her question with ease and said, "Leave tonight at midnight, and return no later than two days from today."

Both Makuta nodded, bowed respectfully, and turned away. Serrakaan had already left for his quarters when Miserix stopped Courtesance and said, "Take this to the library and archive it. It is an important artifact that I want reserved for indecent times."

With that said, he gave her the tablet, and she turned and headed to the library. She walked up many flights of stairs and into the library. She walked past many rows until she got to a specific room, where the more important documents were kept. She then walked over to a symbol in the wall and pushed it in. Then a door opened in the wall, and she walked into a small room and put it onto a shelf where only a few documents were kept, and even a few scrolls.

She was about to leave when she caught a glimpse of someone else in the room. She quickly deduced who it was: Makuta Teridax, Miserix's second-in-command and wise counselor on difficult decisions. Teridax, like herself, could usually be found in the library, as they both had a lust for knowledge, and no doubt he was here to inspect the new addition to the library. Teridax always seemed to have a dark side to him, and it made even Courtesance believe that he might be capable of treason, despite how much Miserix would argue otherwise.

Teridax leaned forward and spoke softly to Courtesance. "Now what is this new addition to the library, and why is it so important as to be kept here?" He said this as if he were asking himself the question, but Courtesance answered him anyway.

"It is one of the few tablets stating the location of one of the largest pools of Energized protodermis that is not located on Destral. It was found amongst a band of thieves, who would have, no doubt, put such knowledge to an evil purpose."

"Such knowledge..." replied Teridax, as he stepped forward and picked up the tablet. "Such knowledge is so undeserving of such weak minded beings of the sort. They say that power is gained by wealth or ability, or resources. However, in truth, knowledge is power--true power. It gives you strength beyond any physical characteristics, and can be used for far worse purposes."

Courtesance nodded in agreement, and spoke in response. "Knowledge is key in any path to gain power, an advantage we as Makuta have over those inferior to us. An advantage that it would be best for us to keep. Chirox has already been sent out to inspect this incredibly large pool of energized Protodermis; hopefully, the former owners of the tablet did not put its knowledge to use."

Teridax nodded in agreement, and placed the tablet back on the shelf. Teridax spoke, once again, as if to himself.

"Just imagine what things could be done with the correct amount of knowledge. I wonder what power the Great Spirit possesses just by his knowledge of the universe. It is a thing worth wondering, and something to envy."

Courtesance did not wish to speak with Tridax any longer, as she needed to prepare for her mission. "Indeed it is," she said, with a bit of weariness in her voice. "I must go, until next we meet my brother."

Teridax responded with a nod, and nothing more.

She left the library and headed for her quarters. Unlike Serrakaan's, they were located with all of the others. She entered her quarters and looked on the wall above a chair that was centered against it. She had a few trophies, but only carvings or statues of her victims, and no others like weapons or heads or other body parts, as her taste was not as gruesome as Serrakaan's.

She took two daggers off the wall; they were her trademark weapons, though she knew how to handle others. She also took her other weapons, like throwing blades. At last, she put on her dark red and black hood and cloak for her mission, and then left to meet Serrakaan in the throne room. Eventually, she saw Serrakaan's tall hooded shadow cast against one of the pillars in the throne room. She walked toward him and nodded, saying that it was time to depart.

Soon, they both walked out of the fortress and onto the beach. Many Makuta stared at them, almost not believing that Serrakaan was being partnered with someone. They walked out onto one of the docks and then vanished, as they began traveling to their target.

There was a massive fortress in the mountains of Stelt. It had a massive courtyard and a very large wall surrounding it. The Patrons of the Dark were known for their prizes and artifacts; they were a smaller organization than the Dark Hunters, but their goals were similar. However, they did not know that they were the targets of the Brotherhood, and tonight, the Brotherhood would not be the only ones to assault the fortress.

On one of the taller peaks overlooking the fortress sat perched a being of average stature, taller than a Toa but not as large as a Brotherhood operative. He had been hired by an unknown benefactor to steal a tablet that told of a mask of light. His name was Skorr.

He had been looking at the fortress, undermining the guards' patrol patterns, and looking for escape routes and important entry points. He was almost through, and almost ready to strike.

Okay; the guards are almost done circling the courtyard for the third time, and then they will head into the fortress. That's when I need to start the operation, thought Skorr as he watched the guards as carefully as a cliff screecher watches its next prey. As soon as the guards entered the fortress, he leapt down and let his wing blades glide him to a window right above the courtyard. He climbed in and planted an explosive on the inside of the window, so that he would not be trapped inside should someone close it.

He walked down several corridors and could see that the guards had been there recently. He kept running down the hallway and reached a very large door. He guessed that the artifacts were behind the door, so he decided to get in the old fashioned way: by blowing his way in. He set a mine at the entrance and got as far down the hallway as he could.

He was about to detonate the mine when two guards came around the corner and ran at him. Skorr easily dispatched them with two single shots to the head. His aim was flawless, and took them down with minimal effort. He then took cover and detonated the mine. It blew open the doors and killed the guards behind them. He quickly advanced through the doors and saw that there were at least fifty or more tablets; however, his employer told him that the one he was looking for would be separated from the others, as it was of more importance than the rest.

He had searched for several minutes when he looked up at the third story in the room and saw a tablet hanging on the wall. He was a little embarrassed that he did not see it as soon as he had come in. He was about to fly up to get it, but realized that if he did, he could get spotted by the guards on the balconies. However, he needed to hide anyway, as the explosion had rocked the entire room.

He leapt up to a good hiding spot and watched the guards as they ran in. They were questioning each other about what had happened and mentioned that something was already amiss, as twelve guards had already gone missing. He was puzzled by this because he only killed four of them--two with his blaster, and two with the mine.

The guards soon ran out of the room and gave Skorr the opportunity to climb to the second story without much effort. He saw another guard on a balcony overlooking the courtyard, and snuck up behind him and snapped his neck. He looked out from the balcony and saw something moving on the outer wall. It was tall and black, and it seemed to almost blend completely into the night. He decided not to think of this at the moment, and focus on the task at hand.

He climbed to the final level, where three guards stood in their positions. It did not take them long before they spotted Skorr, and the opened fire with their blasters. Skorr threw a concussive grenade in the direction of two of them and blew them away, also knocking down a pillar, which landed right on top of the other guard.

And that is why they hired me, he thought.

At last, there were no more guards, and he was free to extract the tablet. It was hanging in the center of the wall, like a decorative centerpiece. As he flew up to it, he carefully reached out to grab it, but suddenly a large explosion rocketed the fortress. It shook the walls so much that the tablet fell off the wall and all the way to the first floor, and shattered on impact.

Skorr screamed many vile and vulgar words as he cursed his luck. However, without the tablet, his mission was over, and now he had to escape the fortress, which would be more difficult now that everyone was alerted to some degree by the explosion. This was another thing he did not understand: when did he plant an explosive that powerful? The fact was, he didn't; it was caused by something else.

Earlier that night.

Two beings suddenly appeared on the beach of Stelt, both almost equally tall and both hooded and cloaked. They looked on at the mountains, where Miserix said the target was located, and sure enough, they saw a fortress sitting against a cliff. It was quite large and looked well guarded; however, few things were impenetrable to a Makuta, much less two of them.

Courtesance looked straight ahead, wondering just where the captains--her targets--were located. She telepathically swept through the fortress, looking for her intended targets, until after a few minutes of searching, she found them. She opened her eyes and spoke to Serrakaan.

"The captains are inside the fortress, in the main hall. I will go and deal with them; you must deal with the rest. Try and make a legitimate distraction so as to lure the captains deeper into the fortress, and the rest of the guards into the courtyard. After you have completed your part of the assignment, meet me back here. I trust you will not require aid from me."

Serrakaan nodded and teleported away, and Courtesance did the same. She teleported right outside of the gates to the fortress. To be more discreet, she shortened her size to average so that she would be less noticeable, and shapeshifted into a smaller version of herself. She circled around the wall to find a more discreet entrance.

She was walking around the wall when several guards saw her. They ran to her, brandished their spears, and spoke harshly to her. Her response, however, was more violent: she threw one of her daggers into the forehead of one of the six guards, leapt over one of their heads, and simultaneously scraped her blade across the neck of another. She threw two more daggers straight into the chests of two others, and they fell silently.

One of the other guards jabbed his spear at her chest; however, she grabbed the end of it and shoved the other end straight into the guard's chest. The final guard looked at her with a surprised look on his face, then dropped his spear and started to run away, but with a flick of her wrist, his head spun off of his shoulders onto the ground.

She walked away, leapt up the side of a wall, and teleported into the main hall. She was now standing on a parchment, high above the captains. She looked down at her targets, waiting for Serrakaan to make his distraction. She waited for a few minutes, but nothing happened.

Serrakaan was occupied by a few guards, who all were surrounding him. He simply raised his hand, and suddenly, they all dropped to their knees, blood being spewed from their mouths. A silent and yet gruesome death. After they were dealt with, Serrakaan went atop a nearby cliff, overlooking the fortress. He knew Courtesance needed a very large distraction, one that would draw the attention of every guard in the fortress. He went through several different approaches in his mind as to how he was to do this, and eventually came to a conclusion.

Serrakaan drew in a deep breath and waved his hands in the air, as if he were grasping at something. Suddenly, black lightning ran down his wrists and hands. He folded his hands to his side, and with a large exhale, he shot one of his hands forward, and the lightning followed. It shot from his hand with a blinding flash, and in an instant, the black, forked energy hit the front gates.

An explosion of energy shook the entire fortress. The front gates were obliterated, along with any guard in a certain proximity to it. Smoke rose from the wreck, blinding the guards who peered through the smoke.

Courtesance would have fallen from her position if not for her grabbing the wall beside her. The captains fell to the floor when the fortress shook, and after a few seconds, they stood up. One of them began to speak very loudly, most likely because of the deafening explosion.

"GUARDS! Get out there and see what happened!"

He signaled to his comrades to come with him, and they quickly walked into the next room.

This is when Courtesance revealed herself. She walked behind one of the captains and stabbed him through the heart. He fell to the ground, and two of the other three captains whirled around and faced the Makuta. She was about to dispatch them when they showed marvelous feats of agility: they dodged her strikes and counterattacked with well-timed swipes to the head. She dodged them, struck back, leapt over one of them, and attempted to swipe her sword across the small of his back. He was just quick enough to avoid her strike, and sent his armored heel flying right past her mask. She caught his foot and twisted it, and the crackle of bone breaking could be heard echoing in the room. She then threw him by his foot into the far wall. He screamed in agony as his foot was twisted three hundred sixty degrees, effectively crippling him.

His ally leapt at Courtesance, sword raised. He sent many strikes in her direction, but she parried them all, and with a quick thrust, nicked him in the waist with her blade. He let out a small grunt, and then countered. They continued to parry each other's blows until finally, she cut his sword in half along with his head, all in the same swipe.

Blood spattered from the open wound, and poured out of his half-severed head along with his brains. The guard she had crippled was still sitting against the wall, groping at his foot. In a final desperate attempt, he threw his blade at Courtesance. It flew by her head, and she caught it with the edge of her blade. His blade spun around hers, and she flicked her wrist, sending the still-spinning blade back to its master. It impaled him through the lower waist; the sound of the blade hitting the wall behind him was clearly heard.

Finally, she could deal with the final captain. He looked at her, not hoping to match her combat abilities. He ran as fast as he could, but she teleported in front of him. He stopped and fell backward, screaming many vile things to her, cursing her to her face. She grew angered by his audacity; her eyes turned from blue to red, her white armor turned black, and her mask went from beautiful to terrible. He screamed, as the transformation was so drastic.

She reached down, quickly grabbed him by the chest, and bit him on the throat. Her teeth sunk into his flesh with a dreadful noise. She then ripped his body away, still holding onto a mouthful of his flesh. She spat it out, blood all around her malevolent jaws. He was on the ground, blood spraying out from the wound. He gagged on the very air he breathed and his head fell to the floor, dead.

She had completed her mission, and her visage changed back to a more pleasant form. She wiped the blood from her mouth and teleported back to the beach, where Serrakaan was going to meet her. But from what she had heard, Serrakaan had just engaged the guards in battle. And she knew, that with Serrakaan, it would be over soon--for them.

The guards ran out of the fortress from every room. The gates were completely obliterated, and smoke rose from the wreck that now stood. Dozens of guards gathered in the courtyard and peered into the smoke, and saw nothing. However, they could feel something: a cold feeling replaced the warm feeling caused by the rush of adrenaline. It was as if the temperature had completely plummeted in the past few seconds.

The guards were going to inspect what had happened; however, for some reason, they did not wish to go near the smoke, as if there was something about it that made them afraid. One of the guards was finally able to approach the gates with a little bit of confidence; however, the closer he got to the smoke, the colder he got. His heart started racing as he walked into the smoke. He was stepping all over shattered rock. Whatever explosive hit the wall was quite extreme, and one that the guard was not accustomed to.

The guard kept walking, slowly, but cautiously, until he stepped in something. It was cold, thick, and dark red. He looked down and saw one of his comrades--or rather, what was left of him, lying in a puddle of cold blood. The thing that puzzled the guard was that this guard seemed to have died after the explosion. What could have done this?

He suddenly heard something, and saw something in the corner of his eye. He quickly turned around to see what it was, but it was not there. He let out a sigh of relief, but then, with his exhale came blood. He spat it all over his chest and hands, and screamed at the sight of it. The last thing he remembered before his death, was a cold, sharp pain going into the small of his back and protruding through his chest.

The guards who were standing in the courtyard heard the scream, but did nothing, for their fear was too great. Several of them went to the gates of the fortress, but they suddenly closed. They tried to open them, but could not.

"We're trapped!" one of them yelled.

They all looked into the smoke, and then saw two small red lights. They were peering through the smoke; then they went out in a flash and then reappeared. They were eyes.

Suddenly, a tall, hooded, and cloaked being emerged from the smoke and drew two long swords as an obvious challenge. The soldiers stood quiet for a moment, and then they charged Serrakaan.

Serrakaan flew forward, swiping his blades across the stomachs of two of the guards. Their innards fell on the floor with a splash. Serrakaan then burst into a flurry of motion, his blades moving faster than sight. Heads were falling to the floor, as well as other body parts, and blood was constantly pouring, bursting from any opened wound. Guards were dropping like acid flies, and blood was gushing from all of the bodies.

Serrakaan had just leapt to a new position in the middle of the courtyard, and three guards ran toward him. Serrakaan blasted them away with a bolt of lightning, sending their fried bodies slamming into other attackers. One of the members jumped at Serrakaan from behind, and Serrakaan delivered a spin kick to his head, breaking the guard's neck. Two guards once again rushed at Serrakaan from behind, and one of them was met with the tip of Serrakaan's blade. The blade went through his body with ease, blood seeping from the wound. The other was met with the edge of Serrakaan's blade, slicing through his neck. They both fell to the floor, blood now openly flowing from each wound.

Serrakaan then pointed his hand to three guards and clenched his fist. All three literally exploded inside out in a bloody fray. Serrakaan then connected his blades together to make a very long staff-like weapon. He grabbed it on one end and swung it in a three hundred-sixty-degree circle, the longer end cutting into the guards who thought they were out of reach. The blade made deep cuts in their chests, and sliced off the heads of many. Serrakaan grabbed the weapon with both hands; the staff was now even in each hand, making it a double-bladed weapon.

He spun the staff in a figure eight so fast that it could be only seen as a silver blur. The sound of flesh being swiftly cut, along with the crunching sound of metal against metal, could frequently be heard, as Serrakaan's blade tore through armor and flesh, as if they were equally as dense.

The screams fueled Serrakaan; with each strike of his blade, one or more lives was taken. Blood was everywhere, as each wound quickly exploded blood in his presence. The guards were now trying to climb the stone wall to escape, but there was no traction; the walls were covered in blood.

After a few minutes of screaming madness, one of the guards got out a concussive energy cannon. He blasted it at Serrakaan, barely missing, and blowing a large hole in the wall. Serrakaan looked at that particular guard, and separated his staff into two blades and threw them straight into his chest. The guard pulled the trigger, and with an unaimed shot, hit Serrakaan square in the chest.

Serrakaan stumbled backwards and examined the wound. It did not even dent his armor.

Now that Serrakaan's blades were gone, he resorted to a new and far more deadly weapon. Out of the folds of his cloak, he pulled out a spiked flail that was so large, that it dwarfed any of his other weapons. Made of a bright silver metal, it weighed ten tons and was larger than a Toa. All of the guards looked puzzled, as if they could not believe that anyone could even lift such a thing... but Serrakaan could.

Serrakaan flung it into the air and swung it in a circle around him. Blood exploded from the impact of all of the guards it hit with each swing. The guards were forced to keep a distance away from Serrakaan, and even the stone walls could not stop the flail's velocity.

Serrakaan was now almost being overrun by guards, who were trying to attack him in between swings. So Serrakaan swung the flail around his head three times and then leapt into the air, about fifty feet high, and launched the flail, letting go of the chain, into the middle of the courtyard. A huge explosion of stone and earth, along with blood, rocked the whole courtyard.

Serrakaan landed in the crater that his flail made in the ground, through which blood was slowly running. He grabbed the handle of his flail and looked around to see if there were more assailants, but there were not. He felt that his mission was finished, and was about to leave when he sensed that another being was headed his way. It was not a Patron of the Dark soldier.

Chapter 3: Unintended Encounter[]

Skorr was standing over the crumbled ruins of the tablet he was supposed to retrieve. He could not believe that a mere earthquake was the cause of his distress. However, he had not time to waste, as he could already hear the guards running to his location. He rushed behind one of the many shelves that were in the library and waited for the guards to arrive. He held his weapon with a tight grip, partly in anger, and also in anticipation.

Six well-armed guards, also well-armored, came into the room and up the flight of stairs to the third level to examine the damage done to the tablet. They looked very displeased, and also a little bit fearful. One of the guards looked as if he were going to hyperventilate, as he seemed very fearful as to what the leader of the organization would do to them.

"Oh, Mata Nui; he is going to kill us. He told us that this tablet was of highest priority, and in case of an attack, to spirit it off the island!"

They knelt down and tried to piece the tablet back together, but it was no use; it had practically disintegrated.

Skorr quickly snatched a grenade in his hand, as it would be the only thing that could help him in this situation. He was just about to throw it into the midst of them when he heard footsteps coming that way. One of the guards bent over the rail, looked down to see what the commotion was, and yelled, "What's going on?"

The guard at the bottom of the stairs said in reply, "There is a situation in the courtyard! We need backup!"

After this was said, all of the guards ran down the stairs to join the others. Skorr could hear the screams of a few guards in the courtyard, and then he heard several more.

"What the Karzahni could possibly be out there?" said Skorr, as he walked from his hiding place to the stairway. He walked down the stairs slowly, as he anticipated more guards, but none came. He took comfort in this, so he walked a little faster, and right when he got to the bottom of the stairway, he heard a door open and pair of footsteps, running toward his location. He saw one of the guards running for the doorway, who happened to catch a glimpse of Skorr and stopped for a second as if in surprise. Skorr took advantage of the opportunity and shot the guard in the leg. The guard fell to the floor, yelling in pain. Skorr ran over to him and pointed his blaster at the guard's head.

"What's going on? What is out there, and why were you running?" yelled Skorr, as he gave the guard a very frightening look. The guard was grunting from the wound he received, and spoke to Skorr in a sense of urgency.

"I got a call from one of the... uh... guards, telling me that I was needed in the... ah!... courtyard, and fast. He used code 14-J, which... mh... is the highest-coded alert in the system. It means... ahh!... It means that there is a very large threat, and that all items of importance are to be secured and the fortress is to be put under lockdown. I was headed to the switch... ahh!... but then, you shot me."

Skorr looked at him, and said, "I believe you, but it won't save you."

He then shot him in the forehead and left the room. He ran down the hallway as fast as he could; if the fortress was on high alert, there were bound to be security patrols, or worse.

He was almost to the exit when he saw three guards head his way, running straight for him. Skorr threw his sword and struck one in the chest, and he shot the other two. He was still running while he did this, and when he got to the guards, he flipped over them, grabbed the sword out of the guard's chest, and landed, still running, as if they were a small obstacle.

He finally got to the place where he had entered, and sure enough, the window was sealed from the outside and inside. He backed away a few large steps, and pushed a button on a control panel on his wrist. The window panels blew up in a fiery explosion, and so did the rest of the wall. He ran and jumped through the smoke and landed with a frontward roll in the courtyard.

He stood up, and he realized he was standing in a pool of blood. He looked around him. Bodies were everywhere he looked. He was wondering what the Karzahni had done this when he looked to the center of the courtyard and saw something that made a chill go down his spine.

He saw a tall, hooded and cloaked being, with and chained flail in one hand and a double-bladed staff in the other. The spiked flail was half the size of Skorr, and the staff was twice as tall. The being was also standing in puddles of blood. As imposing as all of it was, the things that made Skorr wish he was not even there were the red eyes looking back at his. As he stood there, with his sword and blaster in hand, the only words that he could summon to his lips were:

"Oh, no."

Serrakaan looked at Skorr with a dark smile, and with a flick of his wrist, the chained mace flew toward Skorr. Skorr leapt into the air and began to blast Serrakaan with his blaster, each shot nudging Serrakaan a little, but nonetheless painful. Serrakaan swung his chain mace at maximum speed. Skorr was finding himself mostly trying to dodge Serrakaan's blows rather than giving blows of his own. He could not get close enough to Serrakaan to deal a destructive blow, and it was making him lose.

Skorr realized that in order to do maximum damage to the hooded monster, he'd have to take the chain mace out of the picture. He threw several smoke grenades at once at Serrakaan, each one landing at his feet and exploding. Smoke quickly rose around Serrakaan, forcing him to make blind swings with the mace.

Skorr was fairly confident that his plan to take the mace out of play would work, but he needed exact timing, and perfect reflexes. He was still, however, dodging Serrakaan's blows, despite the fact they were a little off-target. Skorr got out his sword and was prepared for what he was going to do, but his luck drastically changed when one of the blind shots nearly hit him. The edge of the mace struck his sword and flung it from his hands.

The sword landed across the courtyard, embedded in the ground, and Skorr had to get it. He jumped, ran on the wall, leapt off it, flipped over Serrakaan's mace, and landed with a roll that set him right in front of the sword. He tugged it out of the ground right as one of Serrakaan's blows was about to hit him. He leapt out of the way just in time to a point on the wall, where he waited for another hit.

Sure enough, Serrakaan's mace flew right to his position, and was going to hit him. Skorr, however, had a trick up his sleeve. He flipped over the mace and sliced the chain in half, cutting the mace off from the rest of it. The mace flew off into the distance and crashed into a nearby barracks, destroying it and causing a dust cloud to rise from its ruin.

Skorr looked to see if the smoke had cleared around Serrakaan, and sure enough, it had. However, Serrakaan was nowhere in sight. Skorr listened for any sound. It was quiet... too quiet... like the calm before the storm. He slowly walked over to the small puddle of blood, trying to see if Serrakaan had left a trail for him to follow, but there was none. The metallic smell of blood was in the air, and nothing else could be seen or heard. Skorr was in a state of high alert, not wishing to be surprised.

He looked into the pool of blood, it was dark red, almost black, and it was thick, and it stuck to his feet. Skorr suddenly saw a ripple in the puddle of blood, and then another, and another. He leaned over the puddle to see what was doing it.

As he looked into the reflection, he suddenly saw a huge black shape appear behind him. Before he could move, before he could react, a cold hand grabbed his neck and threw him headfirst onto the stone floor. His face splashed into the puddle of blood. He felt a large foot land on his back and begin to force his body into the ground, crushing him. In a desperate attempt, he got a grenade and threw it in the air behind him, hoping for it to distract Serrakaan. He heard a loud boom, and the large foot left his back. Skorr lurched forward and ran to the other side of the courtyard. He spat out all the blood that got in his mouth and up his nose. He gagged on all of it, but finally got it out of his system.

He slowly turned to face Serrakaan, who pulled out the remainder of the chain that held the mace. He electrified it and swung it at Skorr. Skorr leapt out of the way as the chain burned through the ground where he was standing. He leapt away, still trying to keep his distance, thus limiting the effect of the chain.

Serrakaan soon got annoyed with chasing him around the courtyard, and threw the chain in a spinning motion. It hit Skorr dead-on and wrapped around him while Skorr was in mid-jump. He was falling to the stone floor of the courtyard when he was hit with a plasma blast, and launched through the wall of the stone fortress and into the main hall.

Skorr stood up and unwrapped himself from the chains. He broke them into pieces and threw them on the ground. He suddenly saw Serrakaan appear in a cloud of black smoke. He slowly approached Skorr, who pointed his blade at Serrakaan and said, "What can you do now without your chain mace? What's going to stop me now from ripping you to shreds?"

Serrakaan pulled out a longsword from the folds of his cloak. The sword itself was about as long as Skorr's, but the handle was longer, and had greater range. Serrakaan lowered the sword to an underhand grip and waited for Skorr to strike; however, Skorr knew that being the first one to strike in a fight was always at a disadvantage. So he waited for Serrakaan. There was a long pause, as both assailants looked in each other's eyes. Skorr was a little nervous, but confident enough in his own abilities.

Suddenly, Serrakaan leapt toward Skorr, his blade spinning almost too fast for the eye to see. Skorr began to parry, each strike surprising Skorr due to the strength, which buckled his elbow with each block. Serrakaan was driving him back, and Skorr could not throw anything back at him for fear of being hit.

Skorr did a backflip and then lunged past Serrakaan, swiping his blade across Serrakaan's waist. Skorr heard a rip in Serrakaan's cloak, and then a clang as his sword clashed on Serrakaan's armor. He was very surprised to see that the strike had little to no effect on Serrakaan, and this made him nervous.

Serrakaan whirled around and lunged at Skorr, still striking at high speed. Skorr, however, finally got in a counterattack to Serrakaan's head, then leapt into the air and kicked Serrakaan in the chest. While Serrakaan was reeling backward, Skorr, still in the air, repeatedly blasted him with his plasma launcher.

Serrakaan turned back around and nailed Skorr with a closed fist to his chest, sending Skorr flying against the wall, with the breath knocked out of him. Skorr flung his sword at Serrakaan in a desperate attempt to keep Serrakaan away. The blade flew at Serrakaan, and Serrakaan slashed Skorr's blade away and still ran ran at him.

Skorr, now without a sword, flew into the air with his wing blades and blasted down a rain of plasma at Serrakaan. Serrakaan leapt into the air and tried to grab Skorr, but he barely missed. Skorr still hovered in the two-hundred-foot-high main hall, and still shot at Serrakaan.

Serrakaan was flying, seemingly by his own power for he had no wings. He flew back and forth trying to catch Skorr, but Skorr was too fast, and due to his smaller size, more nimble than Serrakaan.

Skorr was still shooting at Serrakaan, when, suddenly, Serrakaan vanished. Skorr could not find him, but he soon felt a cold, icy presence in the room. He was still hovering in the room when he felt icy fingers grab his shoulder from behind.

Skorr looked around to see Serrakaan. Serrakaan threw him into a wall with crushing power, and then flew at lightning speed at Skorr. Skorr dropped and let gravity take its course just in time, as Serrakaan's cold fist slammed into the stone wall and cracked it.

Skorr was about to activate his wing blades to spare him a hard fall, when suddenly they would not work; he was still falling. He fell and fell and fell, all the way to the floor with a loud crunch, which was the sound of his armor hitting the stone floor.

Serrakaan landed about twenty yards away from Skorr, on his feet. Skorr wrestled to his feet and pointed his plasma blaster at Serrakaan. Serrakaan lifted his hand and blasted Skorr with a shadow blast that sent him slamming to the floor.

Skorr hit the ground hard once again, with his armor beginning to crack from the constant hits. He grabbed his plasma launcher, still intact, and he crawled to his sword and retrieved it. He then turned and threw smoke bombs at Serrakaan, then activated his wing blades and zoomed up above the smoke.

Skorr looked down at the smoke and threw three concussive grenades down there. He heard the three explosions and saw a large burst of flame rise up. Skorr waited for three seconds, trying to judge whether or not the grenades worked.

All of a sudden, a huge shadow blast came from the smoke and nearly hit Skorr. It flew past him and hit the ceiling, shattering it. Skorr immediately flew out of the gap and outside. He landed on the roof. Soon, a large explosion of black smoke appeared about thirty feet from his position. Serrakaan emerged from the smoke and blasted another bolt of shadow at Skorr.

Skorr raised his personal shield and it absorbed the blast as if it were a mere gesture. Skorr laughed and said, in his pride, "Ha ha! It would take a lot more than you've got to penetrate this!"

Skorr was still laughing when he saw Serrakaan wave his hands in the air. Black lightning sprouted from the tips of his fingers, and then, after a few seconds, he shot his hand forward and let the lightning leave his hand. It slammed against Skorr's shield and created a wild explosion.

When the smoke cleared, Skorr lay on the ground, motionless. He soon opened his eyes and sat up.

"DANG IT!" he yelled, for he was sure the shield would protect him, but the blast overloaded the shield's system, and it now needed a little time to recharge. Skorr struggled to his feet and looked around for his plasma launcher, but could not find it. He then looked at Serrakaan, and it was in his hand. Serrakaan made a fist and crushed it, and then threw it off the roof.

Skorr ground his teeth in anger and brandished his sword in defiance. In response, the Dark Makuta took two longswords from the folds of his cloak, each the same length, and lowered them into a fighting stance.

Skorr charged forward, yelling in anger. He swiped his blade and hit Serrakaan's arm. Serrakaan spun his blades and began to savagely attack Skorr. Skorr was now reduced to blocking, and that was all he had time to do.

Skorr was doing pretty well until Serrakaan reached thirty strikes per second. Soon Serrakaan overloaded Skorr's defense and swiped Skorr's blade out of his hands. And without even a slight pause, Serrakaan swiped his blade across his chest, tearing a deep gash.

Skorr screamed in pain, as Serrakaan kicked him in the same spot. Skorr flew in the opposite direction and off the roof, but as he was falling, he activated his wing blades and flew away.

Skorr was quite relieved that it was over, and had just flown out of range of the fortress. Serrakaan watched as Skorr was flying away, and decided that he could not let him leave alive. Serrakaan waved his hands in the air, and lightning formed at his fingertips. He charged the lightning for a few seconds. He then shot his hand forward and let the lightning leave his hand.

Skorr felt a strong burn come over his body along with a deafening crack. He could feel the electric currents course through his body, and in his opened wound. After the lightning subsided, he fell three hundred feet to the forest floor.

Skorr barely got to his feet, and cursed in vain at the Makuta. The lightning bolt was so hot that it cauterized his wound, and it was extremely painful. Skorr decided that instead of flying, he would walk through the forest to avoid detection. However, he decided to head to his safe house and report that his failure was not his fault, including the interference of the Makuta. However, Skorr would not forget this encounter, and one day, he would come back better-equipped and finish what he started. But until then, he needed to report the events to his current employer. Skorr only hoped that this would not be bad for his reputation.

Meanwhile, Serrakaan was still standing on the top of the fortress. He was contemplating giving chase to Skorr, but he decided not to when Courtesance came up to him. She was in her less beautiful form, sporting her black and red cloak.

"Where were you? I waited for an hour."

Serrakaan communicated with her telepathically. I was battling an intruder. However, he got away.

Courtesance rolled her red eyes and said, "Miserix is expecting us. We need to return to base as soon as possible."

Serrakaan turned and walked away, and Courtesance followed. They both teleported, and eventually arrived at Destral.

Both Makuta walked into the main fortress and into the throne room. Miserix smiled and immediately knew of their success. He only asked one question: "Were there any survivors?"

Coutesance responded in Serrakaan's stead. "There was an intruder, a bounty hunter who challenged Serrakaan after the mission was complete. He may have survived, but he was too wounded to follow us."

Miserix frowned and said, "Very well, seeing as this bounty hunter was not a part of the mission, I will let this minor mistake go unnoticed. However, as for now, you are on leave."

After this, both Makuta went their separate ways and dispersed into the fortress, biding their time with various activities that only Makuta enjoyed. And they both knew that this would not be the last time they got paired together for a mission.

Meanwhile, on Stelt's western coast, Skorr was resting in his safe house. He had dressed his wounds and repaired his weaponry; now, all he needed to do was to somehow contact his employer. The employer never gave him a name or a way to contact him; he only said that he would know when the mission was over.

Skorr was getting impatient. It had been three days since he had tried to steal the tablet, and he had had no contact. However, finally, the holographic communicator in his safe house beeped an incoming transmission. It was his employer.

Skorr pushed a blue button on the side of the device and waited. He saw a blue image of a being who had managed to somehow scramble visual and vocal recognition, so any means to identify him were futile.

The being spoke to Skorr with a stern, commanding voice, and said, "Have you completed your mission?"

Skorr waited for a moment, trying to think of a suitable response. Finally, he found it. "There was a complication during the mission. An unforeseen problem. The tablet you hired me to retrieve was destroyed in the process, and I was nearly killed."

The holographic being responded. "I thought you said that a bunch of mindless thugs were no issue?"

Skorr quickly responded. "No! They weren't the problem; the problem was that some massive cowled being came and messed up the entire mission. He caused an explosion that destroyed the tablet, and he tried to kill me. I don't think he wanted any witnesses. He was also very powerful and strong. He shot lightning at me, for crying out loud! So in short, don't blame me for the tablet's destruction, as I made sure to take all the necessary steps of caution and care in the moment. I nearly got the tablet, and I suppose I should have been more prepared, but you have no idea what I have had to recover from the past few days, so don't mess with me on this one!"

The employer responded with flat, impenetrable calm. "I understand."

Skorr looked at the image and said, "What?"

The employer began once again, saying, "Despite your failure to retrieve the tablet, you will still be paid for the mission. We only wanted the tablet so that no one else could get their claws on it, but now that it is gone, the mission is nonetheless complete. The one hundred thousand widgets are stored in a cave approximately ten miles from your location."

Skorr responded, "So that's it then?"

The contractor replied. "That's it."

Skorr was about to wrap up the conversation when he asked, "What if I need to find you?"

The faded figure replied, "You won't. Do not attempt to contact me, for I will have changed my comm code by then. Do not try to trace this message, for I have outfitted your safe house with an explosive device that will clear everything in a mile's radius, and I will use it if you try to find me. If I need you for another mission, I will contact you. Understood?"

Skorr was trying to summon a reply, but all he could get out was, "It was a pleasure working for you."

The employer nodded, and then his hologram vanished off the grid.

Skorr later went in search for his payment, and found it exactly where it was supposed to be. Skorr only tried to imagine what person had so much money on his hands to spend. He also wondered what the employer meant when he said, "We only wanted the tablet."

How many people were there involved? Why did they not wish to be found or recognized? And why the death threat? So many questions, and Skorr would more than likely never find the answers he was looking for. But he got one hundred thousand widgets for his troubles, so he accepted that as compensation enough.

On the other end of the comm, a tall being pushed a blue button on the console of the holographic projector and Skorr's image went away. The being was tall, and had silver and black armor. He was going to leave the room when someone, who was about as tall as he was, came into the room and addressed him.

"So, the tablet is not secured. I thought you said this bounty hunter was the best?"

The sliver and black being replied, "He is one of the best, but he said that the mission was jeapordized by a powerful, cowled being who was able to generate lightning."

The other being nodded as he was thinking, and said, "I think it smells like the brotherhood of Makuta, but why would they wish to interfere in our affairs?"

The silver and black armored being replied, "I don't think it was an intended encounter. I think the Brotherhood, if it was them, had other intentions. They most likely stumbled upon Skorr during their mission, and believed him to be a threat, so they tried to take him out. It is well that they failed to do so."

The other being replied, "You are most likely correct on that. Well, I must go. Helryx has assigned me to train the Toa Mata for combat, so I must not keep them waiting. Do you have any ideas as to how they may be aggressively challenged?"

The silver and black being answered, "You could face them yourself. Oh! You could send Spinax against them. That will put them in a rather... interesting situation, if you ask me."

The other being responded. "It sounds like a good option. I will keep this in mind for later. Well, now I must go. Make sure to report the success of the mission to Helryx, and remember to mention the Brotherhood's involvement. That will interest her. Until we meet again, Mersery."

Mersery responded. "The same with you, Hydraxon."

Both Order of Mata Nui members departed, and went to do their tasks. Mersery went to the throne room, where Helryx was most likely to be located. When he got there, he nearly bumped into Botar, as he was leaving the throne room. Helryx saw Mersery and gestured to him to come forth. Mersery walked forward, and spoke with her on the details Skorr gave him about the mission. She was pleased that the tablet was done away with, but she showed a hint of worry when he brought up the possible attack by the brotherhood of Makuta. She spoke to Mersery, and gave him a new mission.

"I want you to pursue this line of inquiry. I want to know who this hooded and cloaked being is, what his powers are, and why he attacked Stelt. I want to know where to find him, and what to expect of him in combat. I do not like the idea of a Makuta running loose, killing dozens of beings who could have easily just been imprisoned. So that is your mission. Return to me with any of the information you acquire. I am going to trust you on this one Mersery; not many people have been to Destral uninvited and not suffered extreme consequences. Be prepared, and be ready for anything. May Mata Nui watch over you and your quest."

Mersery made a bow of respect and left the throne room. He would need a boat, infiltration supplies, and weapons, for he was heading to Destral. He knew that he was capable of this mission, but he did not know how hostile the Makuta would be, and this made him a little uncomfortable. He hoped he would succeed, for he remembered what happened the last time the Brotherhood found intruders and caught them. To think about the things they did to them chilled Mersery, because the intruders all died very painful deaths, and he was determined not to suffer the same consequences.

Chapter 4: Mission (Near) Impossible[]

Mersery walked through the halls of the fortress. The sun was beginning to set, and the clouds gave off a pinkish glare that reflected off the shoreline. Daxia had always had a calm scenery, and if you looked beyond a few dangers and inhospitable places on the island, one could call it a true island paradise.

These things Mersery enjoyed when he was not on missions, but he was soon to go to a place that was reportedly quite the opposite. Destral was known for its rocky climate and sharp mountains. There was no lush jungles, no greenery, or any peaceful or beautiful climate of the sort.

Mersery had also heard just how impregnable the main fortress was. He heard it was as tall as the Coliseum of Metru Nui. He heard that the shores of the island were ridden with traps and deadly devices. He heard that the walls were high, and near impossible to penetrate. Every door or window was sealed and impossible to access.

With all of this in mind, it would seem impossible to gain access to the main fortress, let alone inside of it. But luckily for Mersery, he knew a person who could infiltrate a place made entirely of metal, with no doors, windows, or openings, with hundreds of people watching it from every angle, without being caught or seen.

He was a high-ranking Hand of Artahka member. He was a master of infiltration, combat, and stealth. He was also one of the most highly respected members of the Order of Mata Nui. Even Helryx kept him respectfully reserved from going on missions. He was one of the wisest and oldest beings in the world, and was usually sent on missions with Helryx when they were in the Hand. His name was Irostenese.

Mersery would not even think about asking someone like him to accompany him on this mission, but rather, to just give him some reasonable advice on how to get inside and outside of the Destral fortress. He started walking down to his quarters on the north end of the fortress.

After a few minutes, he got to the door of his quarters. He knocked three times and waited for a response. He heard one only a second later, and he walked in. There Irostenese was, standing by the large window on the other side of his quarters. He walked to Irostenes's side, gazing at the beautiful sunset. Soon the silence was broken, when Irostenese began to speak.

"It is beautiful, is it not? I could just gaze at it all day. But what would a day be without company? What is it you want to talk about, Mersery? Is it something I can help you with?"

"Actually, it is. There was a disturbance yesterday when the Brotherhood of Makuta attacked a fortress on Stelt. Now, normally, we would not look into it, but the Brotherhood's interference cost us a valuable price, and now Helryx wants me to find the one who was responsible and profile him. And to do this, I must go to Destral and study him from afar."

Irostenese got a quizzical look on his face, and then he burst into laughter. "Study, a Makuta! HA, HA, HA!"

Mersery got a little embarrassed, and Irostenese saw it, so he sustained his laughter and spoke to Mersery.

"I have no doubt in my mind that you are capable of the mission, but you may wish to change your strategy of profiling this Makuta. You see, following a Makuta is relatively pointless. The have eyes in the back of their heads, so they would know if someone was following them right away."

"Then what should I do? I must gain a reasonable amount of information on him, and to do that, I must observe him. Is there any other way?"

"As a matter of fact, there is. Do you know the name of the Makuta?"


"Tell me what you know of him already, other than his gender."

"Well, he is supposedly very tall, he is cloaked in black--maybe a hooded robe. That was all the information provided."

"Hmm. That description rings a bell. Hold on for a second."

Irostenese went into another room that had shelves on every wall. The shelves were packed tightly with tablets, all of different size. Irostenese climbed a ladder to a top shelf and he pulled down a long tablet, about three feet wide. He slowly backed down the ladder and joined Mersery on a bench facing the window.

"This should help us in our search."

Mersery looked up and down the tablet. The only thing written on them were names, and the carvings appeared to be so old that some had faded. He looked at the top of the tablet in the center of it, and it read, "The Brotherhood of Makuta." Mersery then realized that each name belonged to one member.

"How did you get this? There are no other documentations of every name belonging to a Makuta. This is an extraordinary find!"

"Find? It is no find; I wrote it."

Mersery got a very surprised look on his face. "How did you find all of their names?"

"Many years of observance. It was one of my assignments during the old days when I was in the Hand of Artahka. It took a couple of years to find all of them, but eventually, I did. Never did I think this would ever come in handy."

Mersery nodded. It always fascinated him when the members of the Hand spoke of their past adventures.

"Now, let me see, Antroz? No. Chirox? No. Oh, maybe it's--wait; he is a she. Gothmogg? No. Maybe Dredzek; he was in black armor last I remember. Are you sure he was a cloaked Makuta?"

Mersery nodded.

"Well, Dredzek never went anywhere with a cloak on his shoulders, so it's not him. Wait... ahh! I have it! Makuta Serrakaan! He is the one you are looking for!"

"How do you know?"

"Because I remember observing him. I could tell you a little about him if you like; it's not much, but it may help you on the mission."

"Very good. Tell me."

"Well, he will be easy to tell apart from the other Makuta due to the fact he never removes his hooded cloak. I never saw him without it. He is quite large--in height, that is. Very imposing. He never speaks, and he is also mostly responsible for the library of forbidden knowledge inside the fortress on Destral. I have also tied him as being the long-time mythical being, the Blood Summoner."

"He is the Blood Summoner? Wow. I remember my people would tell stories of how horribly he left his victims. They used his legend to scare each other. I never thought he was actually real."

"There is another thing: He does not like sunlight. Wherever he went, it was always at night. And also, avoid a confrontation with him. He is an incredibly skilled fighter, and I do not think it wise for anyone to face him alone."

"Thank you, Irostenese. I am in your debt."

"It was my pleasure. Good luck on your mission. Oh, and since you will most likely not be able to locate the target, go to the library of forbidden knowledge in the main fortress. No doubt, it will contain a biography of the Makuta."

"Thanks for the advice. Now I really must get going. Until next time, my friend."

"Indeed. Until next time."

Mersery left his quarters, and walked down a hall and down a few staircases. He then walked out the main gate of the fortress and headed for the docks. He had a long journey ahead of him.

Courtesance walked from the training area to her quarters. She was in a state of mind that kept her distracted, and she wished she could think it over. She wondered why there was need for such violence, instead of forgiveness. She wondered how many lives she and the other Brotherhood members would have to take before they crossed a line that could not be forgiven.

After killing the beings that were assigned for her mission, she would go back to Destral and merely wonder. Wonder whether or not she had killed someone who may have had some good left to give. What if by killing someone, she unintentionally ruined the life of another?

She wondered if Serrakaan ever felt remorse or guilt like her. Despite her admiration and respect for Serrakaan, she could only wonder what had happened to him to make him so merciless and cold. What could make such a monster? She then stopped in her line of thinking, and thought the word through.

Monster? Was that what others thought of her? Was that what her legacy would be? True, in her other form, she was quite monstrous. Her mask was called the mask of alternate personalities. She was beautiful, wise, and compassionate in a sense in her less grotesque form, but she could also be full of hatred, anger, and completely without mercy in her other form. She actually changed physically, and mentally. In either form she was in, that mindset despised the other.

She thought that just because she was not in her more violent form, her reasoning was clouded by a hatred for her other self. And by the same token, if she were in her other form, she would despise the idea of forgiveness and mercy. She wished that her mask did not force her to think of things in such a black-and-white manner. She wished she could have an idea of what her true personality would be, if the mask were not in use. However, no matter how much she wished it, there was no middle personality; there was only grace and anger. Forgiveness and hate. Light and dark.

After thinking all of that through, she left her quarters so she could go to the library. Perhaps a more distinct definition would be there, where she could find peace of mind. She hoped this as she shut the door to her quarters behind her.

Mersery stood on the deck of a small scouting boat that was leant to him by Helryx. He clearly saw the Destral fortress against the night sky. He chose to come at night because the guardians of the wall would not be able to see as well. Also, Irostenese told him that Makuta Serrakaan had no love for the sun, so he figured that it would be easier to locate him while he was out around the fortress.

Mersery guided his boat closer to the eastern shorline. There were several docks, but he knew it best to keep his boat out of sight. He anchored it behind one of the large rocks that were close to shore. He then leapt into the ice cold water and swam the rest of the way.

He soon got to shore. He could see his breath as he was shivering in the cold, bitter surroundings. He looked beyond and saw several paths, and he was about to follow one, but he realized it would be better to scale the rocks and completely avoid the paths, for there were most likely traps all over the passages.

He climbed the rocks and kept his body low, for he was now in visual range of the first wall surrounding the compound. He was closer to the walls of the compound when he heard something, or somethings running along the pathway below. He immediately stopped and flattened himself on the rock, so he wouldn't be seen.

Around the corner came running two very big canine like rahi with glowing red eyes. They kind of reminded Mersery of the energy hound back at Daxia, exept they were alot bigger, and had alot more teeth.

They raced around the corner and pounced on a corpse, most likely a victim of one of the many hidden traps. They were absolutely ripping the body to shreds, and blood was splattering everywhere. Mersery was about to move away when he heard more footsteps. Very large footsteps.

A very large and spiked being came around the corner, and when the beasts saw him, they scurried away from what was left of the body. The spiked being bent down and looked at it. The being got up a few seconds later and said.

"Another victim of the traps. What a shame, I was hoping for a good chase."

The tall being then froze, and looked around wildly.

"I sense something. It's alive."

He grabbed the beasts by chains around their necks and led them a few hundered feet away. Mersery could not see anything, but he heard the spiked be let his rahi loose, and then he heard screaming, and then the sound of ripping flesh.

Mersery moved as fast as he could in the opposite direction, hoping that those hounds would not smell, or see him. He then was only a few feet from the wall. He looked up and had no idea of how he was to climb it, until he looked a few hundered feet down the wall and saw a large rock, that was almost as tall as the wall itself. And Mersery believed that given enough strength, he could leap from the rock to the top of the wall.

Mersery leapt from stone to stone, and was getting very close to his target. He was so close when he heard the hounds, they were howling, and if he knew anything about rahi, he knew that when a canine rahi howeled, that meant it had caught a new scent.

Mersery got a sense of urgency when he heard one of the hounds climbing the rocks. He knew that it was coming for him, so he ran to the target as fast as his legs could carry him. He had knew he could take on a rahi, but he was not so sure about it's master.

He soon saw the rahi jumping from the rocks after him, and it had blood all over its face. Mersery was almost to the tall rock where he could get over the wall, when the rahi jumped on his back. It pinned him to the ground and was trying to engulf his face in it's jaws.

Mersery had both of his hands in the corners of its jaws, trying to get the beast off. He could feel its claws imbeading themselves into his armor. Mersery was useing all of his strength to keep it from biting his face. He could not wrench it off off of his body, until he thought of another way to get it off.

He used his power over the elements to crack the rock beneath him. He waited for gravity to do the rest. The cracked rock could not support the weight of both him and the beast, and so it shattered beneath them. He grabbed onto the side of the rock while the beast fell fifty feet to the ground. There was a loud crash and a yelp from the beast.

Mersery climbed back up to the edge of the cliff and climbed to the very top. He was now right across from the wall when he was getting ready to leap across the open gap. He was about to do it when he heard the hounds running and also he saw their master running with them. He knew if they saw him that the mission may as well be over, so he had to waste no time. He leapt the gap, and looked down at the seventy foot drop. In a split second, he grabbed the wall and quickly lifted himself up. He now looked down, and saw the hounds investigating their fallen comrade. but he had not time to waste, so he kept moving. He looked down the long walkway of the wall, and saw four Rakshi headed that way. It was time for him to use his mask to help things.

The Rahkshi were walking right toward him and did not see him, they only saw a Rakshi of chain lightning standing guard. Seeing as nothing was out of the ordinary, they simply passed by. Little did they know that that particular Rakshi was not as it seemed to be. As soon as the four Rakshi walked out of sight, the Rakshi of chain lightning jumped over the side of the wall, and was now inside the compound.

The Rakshi then shape shifted back to the form of Mersery, who had easily fooled the brainless Rakshi. Mersery looked toward the main fortress. It was incredibley massive, and what he needed was inside. Irostenese spoke of a library inside that was certain to contain valuable information on most, if not all Makuta. It was only a matter of getting inside to find it.

The main fortress had yet another wall surrounding it, and there was no way Mersery was going to go by the main gate, so he had something a little different in mind. There were four towers stationed equadistant in a circle around the fortress, each connected by the wall. He would simply access the Eastern tower through a smaller doorway and then gain access to the main fortress.

Now the Eastern tower was the closest, and with a good dash, he may make it there in two minutes. He knew however that an unknown personnel running to one of the main towers in the dead of night was suicide, and a Rakshi simply flying over the wall and waltsing into the fortress would be too inconspicuous.

Suddenly he saw two Exo Toa walking to the very tower he was headed for. He only thought of how easy this was going to be. He shapshifted into one of the Exo Toa and began to walk toward their position. He caught up with them, and they accessed the tower. They went down a long halway and turned left into an elevator. One of the Exo Toa activated it, and it was taking them to the top floor. On the inside, Mersery was trying not to laugh, as it was so easy to keep playing the robot until he found the library. Finally the elevator stopped, and the door opened, and when it did, Mersery was not laughing.

Standing in front of the door, was a Makuta!! Mersery knew not who it was, only that it was menacingly large. He was tall, black, green, and silver, and had a cape draped over his shoulders. The Exo Toa stopped in their tracks, and saluted, Mersery knew he had to not only keep his mouth shut, but he had to be just a mirror image of the other Exo Toa. If a Makuta tried to read his mind, and realized that they could not, his cover would be blown.

The Makuta soon addressed the robots with a command.

"Makuta Gothmog believes that he and his hounds have found an intruder. I want you to all go down and patrol the Eastern gate to the compound. No one must get inside the fortress. If you see anything suspiscious, shoot first, and inform me later. Now go."

The Exo Toa saluted, and pressed the button on the elevator for the bottom floor. Now Mersery had to go down right where he started! This was very frustrating, however he had a plan for getting out of the way. Once the elevator opened, they all walked out, exept for Mersery. The Exo Toa kept walking, and then they noticed that one of them was missing. The went back over to the elevator, and looked inside, and saw nothing.

They looked high and low, and could not find their missing comrade. They were about to raise an alarm, when the elevator door closed behind them, and sent them back to the top floor. A Rakshi walked away from the elevator controls and ran for the stairway. It soon turned back into Mersery, as he was racing up the stairs, he only hoped he did not run into anyone on the stairs as he did in the elevator.

It took about ten minutes for him to reach the top of the stairs, running at full speed even, and then he resorted to leaping higher from staircase to staircase, but he finally got to the top, and transformed back into an Exo Toa. He turned right, and walked down another long hallway. He finally got to the end of the hall and to the open door. It led outside and it was a long bridge to the main fortress. He was almost there. He looked over the side of the bridge and it looked to be about five hundered feet down, and that was not even half the height of the main fortress.

The bridge was also very long. He thought it would take about five minutes just to get to the other side running, let alone casually walking. He passed several beings who he would have classed as Makuta, he only hoped he would not be discovered.

After about twenty minutes, he finally got to the oposite side. He went right through the gate, and stopped. He looked down the main hallway, and it looked incredibley long, and it had many doorways, and any one of the doors could lead to the library.

He stoped at the side of the main doorway into the fortress in a position that made him look as if he were guarding it. He thought just how he would get to a library that could be anywhere in this gigantic fortress.

He then remembered, that Exo Toa are mechanical. And they also know how to get to anywhere in the entire fortress. If he could find one, and disable it without destroying the main memory core, he could find a possible map of the entire fortress and compound.

He began to put his plan into action, but how exactly was he to get one alone. He then found his answer when he saw one go through a door into another room. He followed it into that room, and stabbed it through a central processer, rendering it, useless. It fell to the ground and he began his work, after shape shifting back into his normal self.

It took him about thirty minutes, but he finally got what he wanted. He was able to display a map on his holographic projector of exactly where the library was. It was on the fifty-ninth floor. So he was relatively close to it.

He opened the door, and looked around the corner. The Exo Toa were occupied with what seemed to be a servant of the Makuta looking for a being called Icarax, most likely he was a Makuta. This was however a good enough distraction for him to slip across the hall and to the staircases, seeing as taking the elevator would be quite risky.

Mersery was already on the fifty-sixth floor, so he only needed to climb three floors, wich would not take nearly as long as his first climb up the stairs. He reached his destination in less than a minute. He peeked around the door into the hallway to make sure that the coast was clear. When it was he entered yet another long hallway.

According to the map, he needed to go into the middle of the hallway, and up a small flight of stairs to reach yet, another hallway, and the library entrance would be there. He quickly did this, and found himself in front of a circular room. He entered, and shut the door behind him.

He looked to the door right across from the one he just entered, and above it were written the words. "The Library of Forbidden Knowlege." Mersery grinned, as he reached for the door handle, so he could enter the sacred library.

Meanwhile on the edge of the Southern Continent.

Zorron was quite nervous about this present meeting. He had no desire to speak of his rather unfortunate run-in with the legendary Blood Summoner. He was called to a meeting place by his fellow captain, Katronstan, so they could speak with the leader of the Patrons of the Dark. Zorron's position in this organization was as a Captain/General of it's military forces. Katronstan had a similar position, but he was more in charge of the private dealings of the Organization, and handled the dealings with their spys, and their missions.

The name of the Grand Master of the organization, is Aluksonnion.

The organization is quite small, as it had a very large fall due to the efforts of the Hand of Artahka. The Hand of Artahka believed the organization to be extinct, but they failed to kill one of the smaller ranking members of the organization. He passed on the knowlege needed to revive the organization through other beings for one thousand years. None of the first ones to know the secrets of the order secceeded in bringing it back to life, until now. Aluksonnion, the new Grand Master, is still searching for the keys that will resurrect this long forgotten order, and he is quite close to finding one. These keys, are two artifacts, a staff, and a sword. They are incredibley powerful relics on there own, but when combined, the weilder is almost invincible. It took four high ranking Hand of Artahka members to destroy the former weilder. And now, Alluksonnion searches for them, so that he could stand up against any who would challenge him. Zorron always wanted to know what it would be like to weild such power, but he assumed he would never find out.

Zorron had to put these thoughts in the back of his mind for now. Now, he just needed to come up with some reasonable excuse as to why he lost two fortifications to a Mythical Monster?

Zorron soon saw Katronston walking his way with a few of his guards behind him. He soon saw Zorron and spoke to him in a kind, yet mocking tone.

"Ah, Zorron. I had hoped you would come. How long has it been since our paths last crossed?"

Zorron could only think to say, "Not long enough." But he did not wish to start this meeting out with hostility. He however harvested no caring feelings for Katronston, and it would suit Zorron better if he just fell over dead than to even have to be in the same room with him. But reguardless, they were the most high ranking individuals in the organization, so a few meetings with him were some-what mandatory. Zorron's hostiliy was placed on Katronston when he tried to take Zorron's rightful place as the next Grand Master of the Patrons of the Dark for himself. The grand Master of the organization placed Zorron as the next ruler, should fate befall him sooner than later. Katronston was not at all pleased with the decision, and tried to frame Zorron with a crime against the organization. The plan did not succeed, however, the grand master did not believe Katronston to be linked with the crime, and thus no charges were placed. Zorron however knew that he was behind it, but there was no way of proving it. And now, there was a meeting called by Katronston, to disscuss Zorron's failure to secure those two fortresses.

However, there are only a few fortresses, or meeting places left after the fall of the first two, and the majority of the soldiers went with them. This would be considered a major set-back, and one not easily forgiven. Zorron knew that Katronston was going to pin it all on him, and he had no way to back himself up. This was very stressful for him, and he could only muster up the words.

"Many moons have spanned the sky since our last meeting. If ony the circumstances of this meeting were fruitful and not of ill news."

Before Katronston could summon a reply, Zorron walked to the edge of the cliff to look for the ship that was to transport their leader. It had already been longer than Zorron could stand to be around Katronston, and he would rather jump off the cliff than listen to another word from him.

Katronston was going to bring up past events, if not for the sudden sight of the Grand Masters ship. It was fairly large, but not large enough to be completely noticable. It docked at the bottom of the cliff, and Zorron could see the golden armor of the Grand Master exit the quarters aboard the ship. Zorron and Katronston walked down to the ship, not saying a word to each other the whole way. They soon boarded the ship and met their Master on the deck.

They both made a respectful bow, and the Master signaled them to come below deck to discuss the matters of late. The walked down the steps and sat down at a long table, the Grand Master sitting at its head. The Grand Master took a look at both of them, and then began to speak.

"I wish that this meeting was unnessescary, but when my messenger told me of the news, I knew that a meeting was mandatory. I do not know what has prompted such an attack on two important locations, espescially at such an inconvenient time as this. Right when our numbers begin to grow, and a gleam of hope begins to shine, for this organizationto once again stake its claim among the lands, an ancient mythical creature comes and destroys the majority of my soldiers. So I ask both of you, WHY DID THIS OCCURR?!!!!!!! WHAT PROMPTED THIS!!!!!!!!!???"

Zorron and Katronston sat still, not willing to say anything. But soon, Katronston stood up and began speaking of past events.

"Both fortresses were equally well guarded. They had at least sixty soldiers each, but if this was a, legendary, monster, than what rules apply?"

He said this, with a laughing tone when he brought up the monster, as a clear blow to Zorrons story. Zorron saw the things that transpired, and could only concure that the blood summoner was real. But it was so far fetched, that this monster let him live, and killed everyone else, that the case did not hold any air. Why would the monster let him live, and kill everyone else? Katronston continued his speech with this.

"Zorron had left the first point of attack right before the assault. He then returned, and all of his men were slain accept him. He was then about to travel to the second fortress, but on his arrival, all of the men were found dead, includeing the captains. Both fortresses were under his protection, his men guarded them, and now your men are dead because of his failure to secure both fortresses."

The Grand Master took a long, unfriendly look at Zorron, who could hardly believe what he had just heard. First, Katronston tries to incriminate him, and then he places all of the blame on him for the loss of both fortresses.

The Grand Master began to speak, with a little anger in his voice.

"I asked, what prompted the attack, not who failed to stop it. And seeing as neither of you are willing to speak, maybe this will refresh you memory. I have recently heard, that a battallion of our men were sent out to complete a mission. Now the mission is not truely the point, it is what happened on the mission that concerns me. There was a conflict with the Dark Hunters that day. A very violent conflict. Dureing the conflict, a bomb was set off by our soldiers to aid in their escape, and in the explosion, an avalaunche arose, and wiped out the Matoran village below. This occured right before the first fortress was attacked, and now, another fortress has been felled. My spies also said that they followed one of the perpetrators to an island. The islands fortress had a bannor hanging from its towers, and so the spy drew a picture of it, and gave the drawing to me. The symbol, that was drawn, explained everything."

The Gand Master laid a tablet on the table. It had a peculiar symbol on it, but one that was very recognizable. It was the symbol of the Brotherhood of Makuta!!!

Zorron gasped, and Katronston frowned. They both looked surprised at this dicovery, however there was no surprised look on the Grand Masters face. Instead, was the look of agitation.

The Grand Master spoke in a quiet tone, but an angry one.

"What I want to know, is who sent the soldiers on that mission, where they assaulted the Dark Hunters. And do not lie to me, because I know it was one of you two!!!!!!"

Zorron smiled, as he knew that it was not him who sent the soldiers on that mission. It was Katronston. Katronston put his head down in shame, and in embarrassment. His plan was too put all the blame on Zorrons shoulders. But he did not count on Alluksonnion knowing so much details surrounding the situation.

Alluksonnion gave a stone cold look to Katronston.

"You knew this whole time what prompted this, and you persisted to lie to me!!!!!!"

Katronston stood up and was about to defend himself, but Alluksonnion sent him away with an angry yell.

"Get Out!!!!!! Get out of my sight if you know what is good for you!!!!!!"

Katronston stormed off of the boat, and met his guards outside. He then preceeded to enter a ship not to far from the one he just left, and sailed back to his headquarters on Stelt. Zorron was satisfied, but he wondered what the Grand Master had in store for him. He soon found out, as Alluksonnion turned to him and began to speak.

"It seems that we are at a stalemate with the most powerful known organization in the world. This is quite an ill omen. However, there is still time to create a suitible retreat, or more of a retirment, if you will. I want all of your men to go to the fortress in the southern isles. Stay there for at least a month. I do not wish for more lives to be lost. I have strived to recreate this organization, and I won't have the Makuta tear it down as the Hand had done over one thousand years ago. And as for you Zorron, you will come with me to the palace. There we can discuss things, of much greater importance. For one of the great artifacts have been discovered, and I am close to reaching it. And once I posses one, I shall find the other."

Zorron was completely stunned to hear that he would see one of the artifacts, perhapse even weild one! Zorron was over excited to think that maybe, he would be instumental in raising the Patrons of the Dark from its former ruin.

Chapter 5 ~ The Escape.[]

Mersery stood at the door to the library of forbidden knowlege. He was quite relieved that he had not been caught. However the mission was not yet over, and he was going into a potentially dangerouse environment. It would be far more likely to run into a Makuta here, than it would be almost anywhere else, but the good news is, that a Makuta tends to stick out like a sore thumb, so he should have no trouble avoiding them.

He finally reached for the door handle, turned it, and slowly opened the door. He made sure the coast was clear, and then he entered and shut the door behind him. Sure enough, there were no Exo Toa, no Rakshi, and surpriseingly, no Makuta. He was still relieved, yet he also felt something was off. There should have been more security around the area, and there was none whatsoever.

Despite these worries, he continued forward into the room. He walked toward a stone rail, and looked out into the library, and dropped his jaw in amazement. It was several floors high, and shelves covered in tablets were everywhere. Below him were even more shelves, with more tablets! He did not think that it was going to be so extremely packed full of tablets. Fear struck him. What if he could not find the right tablet? What if he could not find the exit again? What if he was discovered? The whole fortress would be in an uproar, with Rakshi and Exo Toa everywhere, and worst of all, the Makuta would be searching for him.

All these thought buzzed into his mind. He felt so unsure of himself. So confused as to where to go after finding the tablet. Getting into the fortress unnoticed was seemingly easy, but what if getting out was alot harder?

He realized something was wrong, very wrong. He was breathing hard, and he was afraid of failing and getting caught. He looked down at his Cronal Staff. What if he accidentally fired it, and caused a loud explosion that attracted the attention of the tower guard? What would he do????

He closed his eyes, and let his fears swarm him for only a few seconds, and then, he opened them, and with a firm step, he continued on with his mission. He leapt on top of one of the shelves and looked at the letters corresponding to the alphabet. It was on the letter Hm, and iff the Makutas name was Serrakaan, he needed to look a little further. He leapt from the topof the shelves, going shelf to shelf, and finally got to the S, section.

He dropped down to the floor and searched for the name. After about seven minutes of searching, he found what he was looking for. The title of the Tablet being SERRAKAAN, was proof enough that he had the correct tablet. However, it was in a different dialect than he was used too, so he would need a translator back on Daxia.

He put the tablet in a pack on his back, and stepped away casually, as the mission was almost complete. He started walking toward another exit in the library, one on the same floor. He was about to reach for the knob, when suddenly, the door itself vanished.

He emediately turned around to see a tall being, relatively his height, standing a few yards away from him. The being bore white and blue armor, and had a none the less beautiful complection. It was no doubt a Makuta!!!!! And her name was Courtesance.

He raised his staff in retaliation, and pointed it at the Makuta, who did not seem at all threatened. The Makuta began to speak, in a female voice, and she said.

"I had not expected the so called intruder to be a Mersion. Seeing as Versuva is quite far off, and seeing as we do not share friendly feelings with the Mersions, I would guess this is not a social visit."

Mersery did not speak back, he just stood his ground, unsure what to think.

"Not speaking I see, well that is too bad. I was hopeing you could tell me what you are doing here."

There was another long pause, as Mersery did not say a word.

"Perhapse you are silent due to your feeling of failure. I think it amuseng that you believed that you had gone unnoticed for the hour and a half that you have been here. Did you really think all of those Rakshi and Exo Toa, and let alone, my Brothers, fell for your little ruse? The only reason that they did not notice you, was simply because they were ordered not too. We Makuta are quite interested in your purpose here, espescially in the forbidden library."

Mersery was trying to absorb the shock that the Makuta knew he was there the whole time, however he was a little puzzeled, as he had been there for alot more than one and a half hours, and in his surprise, he still remained silent.

"Interesting, how one being would risk everything to steal one tablet. Perhapse you would like to enlighten me?"

Mersery still remained silent.

"Well, I suppose that it does not matter why you're here. Because now, it is over. You are discovered. Rakshi are at every checkpoint in the fortress, and you are trapped, with nowhere to go. You can run, but I will catch you. You may hide, but I will look for you. I hope you choose to surrender, it would be such a shame for you to expend all of yor energy fighting your way out, only to be killed. However, either way, you will die, it is only a matter of what events you choose to go with."

Mersery still stood, not moveing. He was quite sure if he was caught, he would be interrogated, tortured, and then killed. With this in mind, he made his choice, he would not surrender. But then, he realized that if he tried to escape now, he would not have a head start. All of the Rakshi were on alert, however, if he were captured, the Rakshi would then believe the threat to be suppressed, and thus not be on high alert. With this in mind, he put plan B in motion.

Mersery dropped his staff and raised his arms in submission. Three Exo Toa came in and subdued him, and one of them took the tablet out of his pack and gave it to Courtesance. She examined it, and then her eyes widened when she saw what it was. She emediately yelled at the Exo Toa.

"Take the Mersion to Dredzeks interrogation chamber!!!!!!"

The Exo Toa complied, and forced Mersery to come with them. Courtesance followed them, until they reached the chamber. They soon strapped Mersery to an upright metal table, and left the room. Courtesance signaled for all three Exo Toa to stay inside, while she went to fetch Dredzek.

Mersery looked at all the threatening tools sacattered about the room. There were saws, hammers, blades of all different kinds. Small blow torches, electrical chains hanging from the ceiling, and also a tank of acid in the corner. Mersery was however in full control of the situation, and now that the Exo Toa had turned their backs to him, it was time to escape.

A little ways down the hall from the interrogation chamber was Dredzeks laboratory. He was working on a new type of rahi that was cat-like in build, and nocturnal in nature. He was thinking of a good name for it when the door to his laboratory opened suddenly. In the doorway, stood Courtesance, with an angry look in her eye. Dredzek spoke in frustration to her intusion.

"What do you want Courtesance? I am quite busy."

"I do not need a lecture Dredzek. I know you value your privacy, but for now I may have to ignore it. I have found the intruder and have taken him to your interrogation chamber."

Dredzek was not at all pleased with this.

"Why take him to my interrogation cell?! I do not care to participate in interrogations right now!"

"Because this one is a Mersion, and he is very stubborn, and fearless. I want him to shiver in fear by the time the interrogation is over, and so that leaves me with two options, you and Serrakaan. And seeing as Serrakaan is more-so occupied, I come to you. So leave your little experiment and come with me right now!!!"

"Why not ask Benjarmin? Seeing as he revals in interrogation techniques."

"Because I do not want to scrape the Mersion off the wall after it is over."

Dredzek considered it for a momment, and decided that he would do it just so she would not bother him.

He got up and walked down the hall with her. They were about to reach the interrogation chamber when suddenly someone yelled at them from behind. It was Benjarmin. He yelled for them to stop. This frustrated Courtesance. Benjarmin would not stop pesterring them until he got to conduct the interrogation, and she new Dredzek would not back her up. They both turned around to see Benjarmin storming down the hall, he looked furious, and enraged.

"Did you find the little rat??!!!!!!! Where is he?!!!!!! I will tear him apart for stealing from me!!!!!!!"

Courtesance rolled her eyes, and answered.

What do you think he stole? Because when we found him, all he had was a tablet."

"Oh really Courtesance, than maybe you can explain why half of my armory has gone missing??!!!!!!!!!!!!

Courtesance was surprised when she heard this, as he only had one thing on him.

"What did he steal?" She asked.

Benjarmin answered, very loudly.

"He took my Flame-thrower, seven Automatic Turrets, seven Mines, thirty eight detpacks, and my speacialized Combat Lazer Turret!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

"Please Benjarmin, there is no way he could have taken all of that!!! He only had one thing."

"Well then where do you suppose they went!!!!!!!!!"

Suddenly the fortress started to shake a little bit. Then the door to Dredzks laboratory blew open in a wild explosion. Then the ceiling blew up above them, and it fell on Benjarmin. Several rakshi ran to see what happened, when they were suddenly being blasted repetitively with one of Benjarmins Automatic Turrets at the other end of the hallway. Courtesance heard many more noises of weapons going off, and then heard many more explosions, followed by bigger explosions. Apparently some of the detpacks were placed in laboratories with unstable experiments, and flamable chemicals. Several Exo Toa were running to the makuta, when Courtesance spotted a mine right in their path. She yelled for them to stop, but it was too late. The stepped on the mine, and suddenly a firey explosion knocked Dredzek and Courtesance on the floor, slightly scorching their armor, and completely destroying the Exo Toa. Krendarr ran around the corner and yelled.

"WHAT'S HAPPENING!!!!!!!???? AHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!"

Those were the only words he got out when the floor blew up underneath him, and he plummeted to the lower level. Benjarmin rose form the rubble, as did Courtesance and Dredzek. Courtesance smirked at Benjarmin and said.

"Does this answer your question!!!!!??????

More explosions were going off, and the floor colapsed again, accept this time under Berjarmin. When Benjarmin got up, he was shot with his own flame-thrower, and he was blown away to the other end of the hall. The flame thrower then automatically started to fire at the rakshi comeing down the hall.

Benjarmin got up again and stormed down the hallway and blasted his own flamethrower with a blast of shadow, knocking it over. When he got over to it though, it had a detpck strapped to it. It then blew up in Benjarmins face, and once again blew him down the hall. When Benjarmin got up, he looked down another hallway just parrallel to the one he was just blown through, and what he saw at the end made him a little worried. Positioned on a tripod, was his ion cannon, and it was pointing right at him. Suddenly he saw the cannon getting ready to fire, and he dropped his jaw and tried to get up, but he stopped himself when he almost stepped on a mine. But when he looked back to the ion cannon, he saw it release its blast.

Courtesance heard Benjarmin yell at the top of his lungs, and then she heard a huge explosion. She then stormed to the interrogation chamber only to find that the three Exo Toa guarding the Mersion, were strung up by their necks with the electric chains. And the Mersion, was nowhere to be seen.

Mersery was now running down a long hallway, trying not to be spotted. He had just heard a large series of explosions going off, and had absolutely no idea of what the heck was happening. All he knew was, that after he left the interrogation room, he was being chased by those crazy hounds again. He was looking for a good place to hide, and the hounds were right on his tail, along with Makuta Gothmog. They were just about to catch him when the ceiling exploded and fell down in the hounds path. Mersery was releaved that he had escaped the hounds, until he heard the Makuta pounding through the rubble. He looked frantically around for a good place to hide, and he saw an open door, that lead into a pitch black room. He ran up a few stairs, into the room, and closed the door behind him. Mersery was standing still, and he realized that is quite cold. He then felt his head pounding, and he shut his eyes and ground his teeth in utter pain. And then suddenly, the pain went away. He then opened his eyes, to find himself on a familiar cliff, back on Daxia. He looked and saw Irostenese on the edge, and so he went over to him.

"Irostenese. How did I get back here? What is going........."

Mersery looked over the cliff to gaze at the fortress on Daxia, and what he saw struck him like a ton of bricks. He saw the Daxia fortress in utter ruin, and it was being trampled on by Rakshi and Exo Toa. He then looked back at Irostenese to see a tear go down the edges of his mask.

"What happened while I was gone???!!!!!! what did they do?????!!!!!!!!!!!!!

He reached out to grab Irostenese, when suddenly in a flash, he was somewhere else. He was in a large cave, and standing next to him was Helryx, and a tall yellow creature, who he did not recognize. He then looked to the direction that they were, and he saw a massive silver wave headed strait toward them. Suddenly Helryx and the Creature were sucked into a black portal, and then it closed. Now he was the only one there, and the massive wave was about to crash into him.

He raised his arms over his face, and closed his eyes, expecting to get hit with the massive wave, but he felt nothing. He opened his eyes to find himself in a completely different place. He was in a large room, with strange machinery inside of it. And in the middle of the room was knelt on the floor, Toa Helryx. She was holding each side of her head, and tears were running down her mask, and her expression, was of hopelessness. She was yelling, "Get out of my head!!!!!!! Stop, please stop! STOP IT!!!!!!!!" Mersery ran over to help her, but in a flash, she was gone.

His surroundings were dramatically different, he was now near a volcano, and he saw two of his fellow members, Axon and Brutaka, fighting with all of their strength, against eachother!!

Another flash went by, and now he was in another dark room. He looked on the floor and saw a red Toa, most likely a Toa of fire, crawling very slowly. Suddenly, a very large, black shape, stepped on him, and thrust his blade ino the toas back. The Toa was screaming and crying, and yelling for someone named Pertara.

Suddenly, the tall, hooded shape, looked toward him, and pointed at him. Mersery looked down at his arms, and they suddenly began to bleed. He screamed when he saw this, and he tried to back away, but he fell in a pool of his own blood, and he shut his eyes.

When he opened them, he was back in that dark room on Destral. What were these visions for, he wondered. He started to get up, when suddenly he slipped in something. He felt weak, and he was very cold. He looked down to see what he slipped in, and he saw something that disturbed him. He was sitting in a puddle of his own blood, and he was covered in it.

He scrambled to his feet and realized that the room had gotten a little brighter. There was a large table, with many seats around it, and it took up the whole room. He assumed it must have been some kind of meeting chamber for the Makuta.

He however had little time to make few observations, because there was something at the oposite side of the room. It looked alot like the tall shadow from the last vision. In fact, Mersery quickly deduced, that it was in fact, the same being.

The tall, hooded being raised his hand toward Mersery and pointed at him. Mersery felt this horrible feeling come over him. He leaned over and vomited out his own blood. He quickly realized if he did not do something, he would end up like the Toa from his vision. He used all the strength he had left to raise his staff and fire a concentrated sonice blast at the tall hooded being.

It struck the being on the hand that it had pointed at Mersery, and the being realed back. It did a little damage to his hand, but not much. The hooded being looked back at Mersery, who had recovered much of his former strength, however he still had blood dripping off of his armor.

Serrakaan appeared surprised that Mersery was showing resistance, however he was still undeterred. Serrakaan once again raised his hand, and a blast of plasma errupted from his fingers. Mersery leapt away from his former position just in time. The plasma bolt exploded when it hit the wall and proppelled Mersery into the middle of large table. He landed with a roll and shot another concentrated sonic blast at Serrakaan.

Serrakaan lept to the wall, avoiding the blast, and jumped onto the table and with a flick of his wrist, a botton fell to his hand from his sleeve, and it extended into a long-sword. As soon as he landed on the table, he tried to strike Mersery over the head. Mersery blocked the assault, and the fight ensued. Mersery was haveing a difficult time blocking all of the strikes, as Serrakaans blade was almost to fast to see, especially in a dimmed room. He was slowly driveing Mersery back across the table. Mersery soon got to the end of the table and nearly fell off, but instead, he jumped forward and landed on Serrakaans chest and kicked off backwards, and did a backflip. He landed on the wall, and jumped off the wall and over Serrakaan and quickly turned to strike Serrakaan across the back with his spear.

But unfortunately, he judged Serrakaan to be a bit slower due to his size, but he was wrong. Serrakaan caught Mersery by the foot before he landed and threw him into the far wall. He threw him so hard that he cracked the stone wall. Mersery, slowley looked up and saw Serrakaan in the air, and headed right for him. Mersery leapt in the air, and barely avoided a stab from Serrakaans sword. He landed on Serrakaans back and jumped back on the table, and emediately fired a sonic blast from his staff. Serrakaan turned around, but it was a little to late to dage, and he was hit square in the chest by the blast. It knocked Serrakaan against the wall, smashing a hole in the stone. Serrakaan was none too pleased by this sudden move, and he plunged the whole room into darkness.

Mersery was now very disoriented, and he was about to run to the door, as he could not see the Makuta anywhere. However, before he could even make a move, he felt a cold, clawed, hand, clamp down on his neck. It was squeezing, tighter, and tighter. He could not breath, and he felt like his neck you break from the preasure. He could not see anything, but he had to do something. He was slowly being lifted from his footing by his neck, and he needed a distraction. He stabbed his spear into the table below him, and he realeashed a sonic explosion, in his desperation. This was rather unsafe for him to do, seeing as he was in the blast radius, but he was desperate.

He let the blast loose, and he felt the icey fingers snap open, and he fell on the floor. The room got brighter, most likely because Serrakaan lost his focus on his shadow powers. Mersery looked around, he had split the table in half, and his was now in between the two halves of the table. Chairs were all over the place, and Serrakaan was walking toward Mersery.

Mersery blasted the nearest door open and he ran out into the hallway. He could feel Serrakaan was chaseing him, and he was frantic to get away, he had lost a lot of blood being around Serrakaan, and he had to rest for a little while, and his body could literally not fight much longer at such an accelerated rate.

As he was running, he saw the door to the library, and he started running as fast as he could toward it. He saw the hall behind him getting darker, and he knew that Serrakaan was comeing. He ran into the library, and put up a stone wall in front of the door. Once he was in, he leapt over the rail, and accidentally dropped his staff during his landing on the lower level. He however did not have time to retrieve it, and instead he hid behind a bookcase, and waited.

The stone wall in front of the door exploded, and Serrakaan rushed in and looked over the rail. He stood there for a few minutes, as he was slowley turning his head, looking for Mersery. Mersery was quite worried when Serrakaan looked right at his staff. He just stared right at it, for about three seconds, and then, he turned around and left the library.

Mersery let out a large sigh of relief, and he shaut his eyes, and took a deep breath. Now all he had to do was get out of the fortress, and back to Daxia. Suddenly however, he remembered the tablet. In his fight with Serrakaan, he felt something crack when Serrakaan threw him into the wall. His eyes widened, as he realized what it was. He quickly took off the pack and looked inside. The tablet had been broken into about thirty peices. However he was not going to let this stop him. He would have to try to put the peices back together when he got back to Daxia.

All he had to do now, was get back to the boat. He felt his energy come back to him, and he needed to make a mad dash to get his staff, and get out of the fortress. The fastest way to get out would have to be jumping out of the window. There was a large window at the oposite end of the library. He was about to make a run for his staff, but when he looked to get it. It was gone.

He looked around in a startled manner, as it was there just a second ago. He did not wish to leave his hidden position however. He had sustained alot of damage in his fight with Serrakaan. It was not the weapons that made him feel weak however, it was the Makutas use of his mask that nearly drained him dry of blood. He was so weak a momment ago, he almost passed out.

He was almost at his normal strength by now, but he still sat down to take a deep breath. He may have to leave his staff behind if he could not find it. He could not take very long looking for it, as he was sure to get caught.

After a few more momments of evaluating his situation in his head, he decided to leave. He got up and walked around the corner, and emediately found his staff, but it was not exactly the place he had hoped to find it.

He looked directly across the pathway in front of him, and at the end of it, he saw Makuta Courtesance, and in her hands, was his staff. She spoke to him with confidence in her voice, as if she had won a fight that was not fought yet.

"It seems that you do well in combat with this staff, let us see how well you fair without it."

She threw it high to one of the uper levels, Mersery almost leapt up to catch it, but it would certainly leave him open to attack. He would just have to obtain it later.

Coutesance was stll just standing there with a little grinn on her face, and she still looked as if she had something completely dasterdly planned in her head.

"I have to admit. You did an excellent job getting away from your interrogation. I also see you even escaped the Blood Summoner alive. You even rigged the entire fortress with booby traps, and fatal ones at that, even almost for my brothers. You have continually impressed me tonight, whoever hired you must have paid you a fortune to come here and wreak such havoc. But it ends now. I will now not even bother to capture you. You have failed, to the point of death, and now you will pay the ultimate price."

Mersery was surprised at her words. It would be easy to tell that he had battled the Blood Summoner, as he has blood all over him. However, he was not the one to set all of those traps, and since it was not him, who was it? What possible reason would anyone on that island wish to help him? All of these questions were swarming his mind, however it was easy to tell he was in for a fight with this Makuta. So he had to be prepaired. The only element he could use was stone, as the fortress was almost all made of stone.

Courtesance raised her hands in a combat position, as did Mersery. They both looked at eachother for a few seconds, and then, the fight began.

Courtesance fired a monstrouse shadow blast at Mersery. In return, he raised a stone block in front of him to block it. The stone block shattered, and Mersery lept atop a bookcase to avoid getting crushed by rubble. Courtesance emediately started to fire smal blasts of shadow at Mersery, and he kept dodgeing them with ease. She however caught on to his game, and blasted the base of the shelf he was on. The shelf toppeled over and Mersery leapt to another. She soon followed up with a massive blast of air, that knocked over the one he had just leapt to. Unfortunately, when he leapt to the next one, he saw why Courtesance used such a large blast. It created a domino effect , so that each one Mersery leapt to, started to fall before he caught his bearings. He must have skipped across six shelves before he leapt to safe ground, or what he thought was safe. Courtesance met him there, and she blasted another shadow blast that could envelope a Tatorohk at Mersery. He Blasted a stone pillar up from underneath yhim, propelling him over the blast and right at Courtesance. He met her with a glanceing kick to her mask, and she stumbled backwards, trying to catch her footing. He then went on the offensive. He began to launch a dozen of stone peices in a quick row at her. She was somehow dodgeing every block, and this amazed Mersery. She was extreamely agile, and quick. He could not hit her with anything. He finally hit her, or barely anyway, when he sent a rockslide of stone headed right at her. She raised her foot and jumped off the moveing stones to proppel her far backwards. She executed a perfect backflip and landed neatly on her feet.

She flashed a quick grinn at Mersery, as an obviouse taunt. He sent a shockwave of air at her, and she dodged that too. It was such a strong bast that it would have done some seriouse damage if it hit her. As it completely obliterated the shelf behind her.

She blasted a strong blast of shadow at him when she landed. He raised a stone block in front of him, but it was not enough, it shattered the block and went slamming into Mersery. It knocked him across the room, and it nearly knocked him out. He barely got up. He new he was powerful, but he also knew that it would end badly engageing a Makuta in a duel of raw power. He needed his Chronal Staff ! He looked up and saw chain anchored in the floor, and it held a large chandelier in place above the center of the library. He blasted the chain with a blast of air. The weight of the chandelier yanked te chain upwards, which is where he needed to go. He grabbed the chain and it jerked him up very fast. He was now nearly at the ceiling when he spotted his staff. He let go and and landed on the same level as the staff. It was now in visual range. Courtesance saw what he was doing, and she did something about it. She took a deep breath, and blasted a very large bolt of lightning to the floor directly below Mersery. It exploded and the floor colapsed, almost takeing Mersery with it. A timely leap was the only thing that saved him. He was almost to his staff, then he could make his escape!

Courtesance charged another bolt of lightning, and this time, she aimed it toward the ceiling above Mersery. The explosion that followed was enough to knock Mersery off track, but the next result had him crushed beneath a tone of ruble from the floor above. He was so close, only to be crushed by this enormose weight. Perhapse, he would not escape, after all.

Courtesance teleportred up to the same level and looked at the large pile of ruble. The Mersion was no doubt dead, or at least knocked out. She was going to dig through the ruble to find him, but then she changed her mind. She was going to blow the ruble away, and hopefully what was left of the Mersion.

She blasted the ruble off that level and she looked for the Mersion's body, but it was not there. She began to get angry, as she was not sure where the Mersion could be. She began to look all over the library, when suddenly a large peice of stone errupted from the floor and slammed into her face. It knocked her back, and as she was trying to gain her balance, another stone pillar came from the floor, and hit her in the chest. She stumbled back and when she turned around, she caught a glimpse of the Mersion, and then, then end of his staff.

He slammed his staff right into her face. She stumbled back, and was up against the rail of the highest level in the librairy. Mersery charged a huge blast in his chronal staff, and let it go. It slammed into the Makuta, knocking her through the rail, and down about sixty feet to the floor. She slammed into a large pile of ruble, and was buried in it. Mersery nimbley leapt down to the first floor, and stared at the pile of ruble. He was tempted to blast it to tiny peices, but he knew that revenge was not the answer.

He turned and walked toward the window. He was about to blast it to shreads when he heard a loud crash. He spun around to see the Makuta explode from the ruble like a volcanic erruption. He could hardly recognize her, as she was now completely hidious, where before she was beautiful. She had a mouth full of sharp teeth, and her eyes turned red, and so did the blue of her armor. And what used to be white armor was now black. She was completely hideous.

She walked toward the Mersion, and drew two swords. There was a short pause, until her teeth curved into a gruesome smile. She leapt at Mersery and started to savagely attack. Mersery was doing his best to block all of her attacks, he also had to flip over her a few times to get a distance between them. She was not useing her powers at all, she only whirled her blades in a dizzying attack. She was incredibley fast, but not as overwhelming as the Blood Summoner.

Mersery kept up the defense, waiting for an opening. He finally found a good one, and jabbed his staff into her chest armor. It surpriseingly did not penetrate, but Mersery did not know that she had been useing a few Makuta powers to aid her, such as slow, (On Mersery) Quick Healing, Dodge, and Limited Invulnerability.

Despite this, Mersery followed this up with a swipe to her legs. She flipped backwards, and landed on her hands. She then did a hand spring into the air and blasted shadow from her feet at Mersery. He lept away, and decided that he had spent to long fighting this one Makuta. He needed to leave, before someone else joined the fight.

He ran to the oposite side of the room toward the window, and was about to jump through, when he saw the Makuta at the other end of the room chargeing a sonic blast. Mersery did not have much time to ready himself, for now the Makuta was about to let it go, and he was not even prepaired to dodge, and he had no cover.

She let the blast loose, and in a fraction of a second, it hit Mersery. Mersery was skidding along the stone floor, trying to gain footing, when he realized, that his chronal staff could absorb the energy, and blast it back. Which is exactly what he did. The staff nearly cracked because it was so full of sonic energy, but this was Merserys only option.

He shot forth his staff, and out of it came an extreamely large sonic blast. It was so large, and so loud, that it knock over every bookcase in its path before reaching Courtesance. When it did reach her, it errupted into a very large explosion. So large, that he could not even see the Makuta anymore from the smoke. He finally did see her slam into the far wall and hit the ground.

This was just the diversion he needed to get away. The sonic blast already shattered the windows in the library, so he only needed to jump. He leapt up to the window and looked down. It was so far down that he got a little weak in the knees, but he had no other choice. He closed his eyes, and then jumped.

A few seconds later, Courtesance got up and looked over the library, it was a wreck, and many of the tablets were destroyed. She looked to an uper balconi, and then realized that the Mersion was in alot more trouble than he bagined for. Standing on a balconi, surveying the damage, was Makuta Terradon. He was a very feared Makuta, almost as much as Serrakaan, in fact, he was pretty much a lighter version of Serrakaan by a small fraction. Unlike Serrakaan, he would occasionally remove his hood, his robes were a blackish red, and he would speak on occasion. He was not as gruesome as Serrakaan, and he did not have the same power over blood as Serrakaan had, but he did know how to make someone explode in a bloody mess, so he was like Serrakaan in many ways. He was considered to be the Makuta's librarian, of some sort. He knew every tablet in the library, word for word, and he practically never left the library. The reason Mersery was now in large trouble, was because he participated in the destruction of the only thing this Makuta deemed of value, and when you destroyed a Makutas prized possessions, you were as good as dead. And in Terradon's case, it was almost a guarantee.

Terradon left the library, and so did Courtesance. Courtesance knew where Terradon was going, but she wanted to survey the damage done to the fortress from the placed booby traps. She walked out of the library, and saw Rakshi parts all over the place, and an automatic turret, empty of shells. She then walked down then next hallway, and saw a trail of blood leading from the convication chamber, most likely the Mersion's. She then walked to the place she was standing when the booby traps went off, and she saw alot of ruble where the floor had fallen. She leapt down and saw Krendarr and Gorast speaking. Both Makuta had very brutal wounds, and they were talking about Benjarmin.

(Krendarr) "Benjarmin was emediately taken to the infirmery from the wounds he received. He looked like a victem of Gothmog's hounds. He was torn apart."

(Gorast) "Well, Mutran had a huge surprise when his whole laboratory blew up with him in it, and Dredzek seemed none too pleased when his laboratory went up in flames. Gothmog lost one of his hounds to a detpack, and Chirox lost his entire quarters. The throne room was completely unscathed however, which is a good thing."

Courtesance interjected.

"Also the Library is in tatters. The Mersion destroyed it. And worst of all, Terradon saw it."

(Gorast) "How did Terradon take it? Was he upset?"

(Courtesance) "No, he just left the room."

(Krendarr) "Ohoh. That Mersion is going to get it. I heard that he escaped Serrakaan, and that Serrakaan was looking for him. And now so is Terradon. There will be nothing left of the Mersion when they catch him."

(Courtesance) "To true, but it will be sunrize in about an hour, so Serrakaan will most likely not go outside to catch him."

(Krendarr) "I am still curious as to who set up those traps all over the fortress. Was it the Mersion?"

(Courtesance) "No, it was not him. I believe we have a second intruder. And I intend to find him."

(Krendarr) "I thought that Gothmog only detected one intruder. How has another one slipped in unnoticed?"

(Gorast) "Perhapse the Mersion revealed his presence as a distraction. So that his comrade would come in undetected."

(Courtesance) "It is possible. But the Mersion was attempting to steal something when I caught him. So why would he complete a mission when he was attempting to be a distraction? That is a horrible stradegy."

(Krendarr) "Perhapse these intruders have nothing to do with eachother. Perhapse they have no idea of eachothers presence on the island at all."

(Courtesance) "That would explain the confusion on the Mersion's face when I mentioned the traps. But the convenience of the traps going off right when the Mersion escaped, makes me think otherwise. I do not believe in coincidences."

Before Krendarr could summon a reply, Morklor walked down the halway, and said.

"I just heard that Dredzek has found the intruder, and it was not a Mersion as described."

(Courtesance) "Did he capture him?"

(Morklor) "Not yet. He said it got away before he could kill it. But he is still searching."

(Courtesance) "Very well. I am going to acompany Dredzek in searching for the second intruder. Come if you like, unless you prefer to be useless."

With that said, Courtesance ran off in another direction. Leaving the Makuta standing alone. She was not about to allow two intruders to escape unpunished.

About five minutes earlier.

Mersery leapt out of the library window, rather unsure of how, or where he would land. As soon as he felt the wind blast against his face. he opened his eyes to see that he had very far to fall. He was going to land on one of the large bridges that connected the main fortress to the outer towers surrounding it. This was not to much to worry about, until he saw about thirty Rahkshi gather below him.

They all raised their spears, waiting to impail the falling Mersion on them. Mersery was hopeing to find another landing point, but he had no time to switch his course to another position. Another question, how was he going to not land on the raised, and pointed spears held by the Rahkshi?

He had little time to think before he came up with a solution for his landing, and for getting rid of the Rakshi. He was about eighty feet abouve the Rakshi when he unleashed a massive blast of air. It slammed into the Rahkshi below and created a small updraft, so as to lighten his fall. Most of the Rakshi had fallen off the bridge, but some of them were still positioned there. Mersery quickly unleashed a large sonic blast from his chronal staff. Most of the Rakshi armor shattered, and the Kraata exploded; But some of them were still intact. Mersery guessed that they were Rakshi of sonics.

The blasted sonic energy at Mersery. Mersery leapt into the air and when he landed, he slammed his staff into the ground, causing the stone to errupt beneath the Rahkshi, launching them into the air. While they were in the air, Mersery summoned a strong wind to blow them clear of the walkway, and over the edge.

With the walkway cleared, he began to sprint full speed to the other side. He was about to reach the middle of the bridge when suddenly four Rakshi appeared out of nowhere, surrounding him.

He emediately stabbed one of them in the chest, and blasted it off of his spear with a blast of sonics. H swiped his staff under the Rakshi on his right, knocking its legs out from under it. He was about to follow up with a stabb to its chest, when it vanished and appeared behind him. It smacked him with its spear in the back of the head, knocking Mersery forward and against the edge of the bridge. The Rakshi tan at him, and tried to hit him, but Mersery stuck his staff into its chest, and lifted it over him and over the edge of the bridge.

The other two Rhkshi were a little more cautious, and approached carfully. But they had not seen Mersery's power over stone, thus they would soon be suprised. He errupted a stone pillar into the air and slamming into the Rakshi's head, knocking it off. The head went over the edge, but since the Kraata was not dead yet, the body was still intact. The headless Rakshi started to wildly wave its staff, trying to strike out at Mersery, and accidentally slamming its staff into the Rakshi across from it. This distraction gave Mersery enough time to send them both rocketing off the edge of the bridge, courtesy of a sonic blast.

Mersery continued his sprint down the path, and a couple of seconds later, about forty Rakshi came out of the gate behind him, and started flying towards him. He was almost to the other side, if he could just close the gate to the tower once inside, he should be safe, for like five seconds.

He was almost to the gate, but when he looked up above the gate, on the archway, he saw someone. He was tall, hooded and cloaked in a blackish red cloak. Red eyes gleamed from beneath the hood, and the looked as menaceing as the eyes of a doom viper. The being was holding a sphere of energy in his hand, and he launched it at Mersery!

The shere of energy slammed into the floor in front of Mersery, and exploded wildly. It sent Mersery flying into the side of the bridge, brakeing the stone rail with his head. Everything went black for what seemed to be a moment, but must have been five minutes.

He opened his eyes to find himself being dragged back to the main fortress, and he was now at the mercy of about forty Rakshi. The tall hooded being, slowly trailed behind them; Mersery quickly guessed he was a Makuta, and it was named Terradon.

The walked a little longer, and were almost to te gate, but suddenly, there was a low toned boom, inside the fortress. Then, the massive doors exploded in a rageing fire. Most of the Rakshe were incinerated to dust, includeing one of the ones that was drgging Mersery. The other one, Mersery ripped his arm away from, but when he tried to stand, he fell to the floor, as if he could not move. He saw the Makuta, with an outstreched hand, pointing strait at him. The Makuta's eyes were fixed on Mersery, but then they looked yonder to the now open doorway. Mersery followed his gaze, and saw someone standing in the broken path where the two massive doors had stood, and it was the last person in the world that Mersery expected. It was Irostenese!

Irostenes drew two swords and rushed forward. There were about ten Rakshi between him and Mersery, and they all prepared to stop the intuder. However, they were by no means a match for Irostenese.

He lept into the air and landed one foot on a Rakshi's head. The Rakshi's head flew of on impact with his foot, and then at the same time, Irostenese drove his sword through the head of another. He landed with a roll right in between two Rakshi, and simultaneousely sliced their legs in half.

He got up and leapt into the air, and drove his swords into two more Rakshi as he landed. Four Rakshi remained, and they all were running toward Irostenese. Irostenese yelled at Mersery to duck, and when Mersery did, Irostenese unleashed a fire blast that incinerated all four Rakshi, and was headed strait for the Makuta who was about twenty feet away from Mersery.

The Makuta raised his hand, and the flame dissipated before him. Terradon looked at Irostenese, with anger in his eyes. Irostenese returned his gaze, and for about ten seconds, they just stared into eachothers eyes.

Then, the silence was broken. The Makuta in his wrath, whirled his arms in a circular motion, and BLACK LIGHTNING came to his fingertips. Irostenese quickly stomped into a defensive position, and quickly dropped his swords.

Mersery dropped his jaw. Everything seemed to be going in slow motion. He was out of range of the lightning, but Irostenese was not, and he was not makeing any effort to dodge. Did Irostenese not know what happened to beings who were hit with that kind of power? It would blow him apart!!!!!

Terradon launched the lightning from his pointer and middle fingers, and it slammed into Irostenese. Irostenese skidded backward, as the lightning drove him back, but there was no explosion. Terradon's eyes widened, and suddenly, Irostenese redirected the blast of black lightning!

It then was headed strait for the Makuta, but it was a little off course, and it struck the ground before the Makuta's feet. A HUGE, black and white explosion errupted and engulfed the Makuta. The Makuta was launched backward, and hit the doors about sixty feet behind him. The stone doors cracked, and the Makuta fell to ground, and landed on his hands and knees. He raised his head, and Irostenese saw rage in his eyes.

Mersery barely stood up before Irostenese grabbed him by the arm and yelled.

"COME ON!!!! LET'S GO!!!!"

He and Mersery leapt over the side of the bridge and began to fall many feet to the ground. Many Rakshi positioned themselves below them, and raised their pointed staffs toward them. Irostenese blasted the all with a huge engulfing fire blast. The both landed with a soft foot, thanks to Mersery, and they both ran though one of the main gates and for the outer wall. Irostenese stopped the wounded Mersery and said.

"Look Mersery, we are almost out, almost! I need you to keep going, I will hold off the Rakshi."

About seventy Rahkshi were chaseing them, and Mersery said.

"No. There are to many. You will be killed!"

"No Mersery, I need you to go as far as you can, and I will distract the Rakshi. NOW GO!!!!!"

Mersery knew there was no time to argue, so he ran as hard as he could to the outer wall. The Rakshi were almost upon Irostenese, and there were so many!

Irostenese took a deep breath, and then he leapt high into the air, and delivered a massive fire blast. He landed and continued his firey barrage. The Rakshi were not going to stand a chance, they were all being engulfed in white hot flames. You could hear the screams of countless Kraata, as they were being burnt alive.

At last, as a final crushing move. Irostenese raised a firewall, fifty feet high, and forced it upon the Rakshi. Irostenese knelt down, breathless. It had been a long time since he had used his powers, and he was alot older. He looked up and saw about twenty Rakshi chargeing another blast, and they were all aimed for him.

He was about to be hit with many shadow blasts, when Mersery leapt forward and unleashed a MASSIVE sonic blast from his chronal staff. The Kraata in the heads of the Rakshi exploded, and the Rakshi armors fell apart from the blast. Mersery helped Irostenese to his feet, and said.

"You did not actually think I would leave you alone to fight them all did you?"

Irostenese looked into the sky, it was still quite dark, and it was quiet, too quiet. Irostenese suddenly looked allarmed at something. He looked at Mersery, and said.

"We have to go! NOW!!!"

Mersery and Irostenese quickly turned around to make their escape, but behind them stood a familiar face, and an unwanted one. It was Makuta Terradon.

Mersery stood back to back with Irostenese and said.

"We can take him together. He can't beat both of us."

Irostenese replied after about three seconds, and said.

"May he can't take us both, but he can."

Mersery looked where Irostenese was pointing, and out of the darkness, came a tall, hooded figure. All cloaked in black. It was Makuta Serrakaan.

Irostenese and Mersery both got into defensive positions, and for the first time that night, Mersery was almost certain, that they would not make it out alive.

Chapter 6 ~ Fight or Flight?[]

Mersery and Irostenese were standing back to back, waiting for either, or both Makuta to strike. Mentally, they both unwittingly decided that Mersery was to fight Terradon, and Irostenese was to occupy Serrakaan. For what seemed like hours, the combatants stared into eachothers eyes, waiting, and watching, to see who would make the first move.

Irostenese, was the first to make a move, and he was the first to strike at Serrakaan. He blasted a small fire ball at Serrakaan's feet, and that small attack began the chain of events. Little did everyone know, just Irostenese, and possibly Serrakaan, that that small firball, was a perfect strategy to start a fight. During the time before a fight, or this one in particular, there is alot of tension as to who will strike first. Now most combatants will attempt to make a firce first strike, but the body is so quickly pumping adrenalene in preporation, that the slightest flinch will triger an attack. The fire ball that Irostenese shot was next to harmless, but it triggered the chain reaction in everyone elses mind, that an attack had been made, and that a follow-up attack was required. For all that time they were standing there, they were listing the possibilities of what first moves to make, and to who would make that first move. Their mind dwelled so much on that idea, that when Irostenese shot that fireball, the mind, almost by default, triggered a counter attack scenario. This would seem to indicate nothing, but there is a little more too it. Usually the first person to attack, has the disadvantage of the other beings counter attack, which is usually the most powerful counter attack of the fight. But by shooting that harmless fire-ball, Irostenese prompted the Makuta to respond to a harmless move, effectviely makeing there counter attacks, the actual first strike, giveing Mersery and Irostenese the opertunity to dodge, or counter attack, and thus, have the advantage from the very beggining.

The trick worked, to a small degree. Terradon attacked Mersery and they both emediately engaged in melee combat. The agility the both possessed was incredible. To an observer, Mersery would seem to be going all out, and it is unknown as to how well Terradon was doing in comparison.

Both the Makuta and the Mersion were flipping, and twisting in angles and positions that would almost be impossible. Every strike that Terradon dealt, Mersery blocked, and likewise was the case with Terradon. They spanned many yards with each and every move, until the eventually they reached the wall surrounding the compound. Mersery leapt backward, and his feet hit the wall. He sprang upward from there, and he landed on a stone pillar that he raised to catch himself. He was positioned above Terradon, but not for long. Terradon swiped the stone pillar with his claws, and it crumbled to peices. However, Mersery was just quick enough to leap off of it before it fell, and he raised another stone pillar from under him, and it proppelled him high into the air. He did a front flip and landed right on top of the outer wall. Terradon quickly leapt up to Mersery, and the fight went on.

Back with Irostenese.

The slight of hand trick worked perfectly well for Mersery, yet unfortunately, Makuta Serrakaan did not make a move. He stood there and stared at Irostenese, who had so hoped that perhapse the Makuta would fall for it, but Serrakaan was just as experienced in combat as he was, so he knew all to well of this trick.

It was quite clear to both combatants that they were at an impass. They seemed to both decide that neither was going to strike first, so they would engage simultaneousely. Makuta Serrakaan whipped out his long-sword from his sleeve, and Irostenese drew both of his swords, and the fight was on.

Irostenese leapt over Serrakaan and tried to slash him in the bacl of the neck. The attack was parried, and when Irostenese landed, he faced the full fury of Serrakaan's combat abilities. They were waving their swords so quick, that only a flash from the moon could be seen as the swords flashed by. One could hear the clanging of sword against sword, yet they could not actually see the blades make contact.

Irostenese was takeing full advantage of his smaller size, and was flipping around Serrakaan with drastic speed. Serrakaan was turning in circles and twisting his body every which way to avoid being hit, and Irostenese was in the same situation.

The fight only lasted for several minutes when their blades met with a very loud clang. One of Irostenese' blades broke, and the other was locked against Serrakaan's blade. Serrakaan standing over Irostenese, forceing both blades downward with one hand, while Irostenese was stuggleing to keep both blades from slowly cutting into his chest. Irostenes could almost not believe the strength with which Serrakaan was forceing his blade against his, and he was only useing one arm!

Both blades slowly struck Irostenese' armor, and they slowly penetrated until blood came out. Irostenese was grunting in pain as he looked into the faceless shadow under the hood. He looked very closely, and barely saw two little red lights, wich he supposed were eyes.

Irostenese was going to get killed if he did not do something quickly, and siddenly, he thought of something.

He opened his mouth and shot fire from it, right in between Serrakaan's mantle and shoulders. There was a loud scream as Serrakaan let him go, and Irostenese bounced back away from Serrakaan, to once again ready himself for an attack. He looked at Serrakaan, who was holding his face with one hand. Smoke was comeing from under the hood, and he could hear an angry hiss from the Makuta.

Irostenese looked down at his blade. It was bent from all the force that Serrakaan used. He threw it down, and raised his hands in wait for the Makuta.

Serrakaan turned around and bore in his hands two new weapons. They were chains, each about twenty five feet long, with razor sharp blades on the ends of each. Irostenese crouched down, getting ready to spring whenever Serrakaan swung them at him.

Soon, almost too fast for Irostenese, Serrakaan hurled both bladed chains at him. Irostenese leapt into the air, his chest faceing to the sky, with one bladed chain six inches from his chest, and the other about six inches behind his back. He spiraled in the air, and hit the ground with a roll. He had to keep on the move, as these weapons were far faster than him, and they were being swung with deadly accuracy.

The next swing of both chains went toward Irostenese' feet. He quickly lifted his feet to his chest and avoided both chains. He landed on his hands, with his chest parallel to the ground, and his feet six inches from the ground.

The next strike went for his arms, and he propelled his entire body into the air useing only his arms. He did a backflip and landed on his feet. He quickly raised a fire-wall right as Serrakaan prepared for another strike. Irostenese, had a instinct feeling that the blades were comeing at him, and so he executed a perfect back bend.

Sure enough two blades cut through the fire wall and flew right where Irostenese' torso was. Irostenese righted himself, and sent the fire-wall flying toward Serrakaan. Serrakaan dissipated it before it could hit him, but it was headed for him while he was in mid strike, and unbeknownst to him, Irostenese had grabed hold of one of the chains and sent a strong electric current through it.

The electric current slammed into Serrakaan's hand and made an electrical explosion. He let go of the chain, out of instinct, and swung the other one at Irostenese. Irostenese in response swung the other one, and both chains colided. The tangled up with eachother, and Serrakaan used this to his advantage by yanking it toward him, dragging Irostenese with it.

Serrakaan met Irostenese with a strong back-handed slap to the head. Irostenese landed hard on the ground, knocking the breath from him. The smack left him quite dazed, and he was unaware of what was about to happen. He felt cold, metal fingers grab his neck, and fling him in the air. With Irostenese airborn, Serrakaan quickly blasted him with a blast of air.

Irostenese was hit with it full force, and it sent him slamming into the outer wall. He hit the ground, and was barely able to get up. He looked at Serrakaan who was slwly approaching him. He had to do something in order to keep him back. He was about to execute a powerful fire blast, but Serrakaan predicted this, and launched a massive power scream.

Back with Mersery, a few minutes beforehand.

Mersery and Terradon were going at it. Mersery had several cuts on his arms, and Terradon had his cloak torn in a few places, so they had obviousely landed a few successful hits.

Mersery leapt from the rail of the wall, and executed a turn heel-rake that slammed against Terradon's jaw. Terradon whirled backwards, trying to ragain his balance. He then teleported right in front of Mersery and punched him right in the gut. He then followed up with an upercut to the jaw, which knock Mersery into the air. While he was in the air, Terradon turned and kicked him with a strong side kick, and sent Mersery skidding down the walkway.

Mersery leapt up and over Terradon and attempted to slash the back of his neck, but only managed to slice off his hood. Under the hood was a hideouse countanence. Terradon charged in anger, and grabed Mersery with one hand, and with the other, he blacked Mersery's staff. He squeezed Mersery's throat, and kept on squeezeing. Mersery saw things going dark, when he heard a loud scream.

This must have distracted Terradon, as his gip losened as he looked the other way. Mersery took advantage of this by kicking the Makuta in the chest, forceing him to let go, and then he did a back flip and landed on his feet. While the Makuta was still dazed, he took his staff and stabbed it all the way through tha Makuta's chest.

The Makuta looked Mersery in the eye, and gasped for air. There seemed to be a small moment of silence, as Mersery stood there, holding the staff in his chest. And then all of the sudden, Terradon vanished in a puff of black smoke.

Mersery withdrew his staff out of what was now thin air, and saw that there was blood all over the mid section of it. He did not know weather or not he had wounded or killed the Makuta, but apparently the Makuta was done, as he was nowhere to be seen, and he was not makeing a sneak attempt upon Mersery's life.

Mersery looked over the edge of the wall and saw, out in the ocean, a small ship, that belonged to the order. Mersery assumed it to be Irostenese', and was about to make way for it. But guilt struck him. Despite the fact he won his battle, Irostenese still had not won his, and his battle was with a far more deadly opponent. Mersery than accepted his new task; To help Irostenese defeat the Blood Summoner, and not leave whithout him.

Back with Irostenese.

After the power scream, Irostenese was almost deaf. He had withstood the blast, but it none the less left his ears ringing. Serrakaan however took advantage of this weakness and gripped Irostenese by the throat without him being seen or heard by Irostenese. Serrakaan slammed him into the wall, and then threw him away once again.

Irostenese was bleeding from all sorts of places, as Serrakaan's power was taking full affect. He was feeling weaker, and was not ready for another exausting duel. Serrakaan was slowly approaching, and was about to reach Irostenese, when he stopped. Irostenese was not sure why, until he looked behind Serrakaan and saw Mersery. To Irostenese' horror, Serrakaan was slowly pulling out one of his chain whips with a sharp blade on the end, and when Mersery was going to strike, Serrakaan would deliver a fatal counter.

Irostenese began to charge a massive fire blast within his body, as Serrakaan slowly uncoiled the chains from around his arm. Mersery aimed his Chronal staff right at the back of Serrakaan's head, but Serrakaan new this, and was about to whirl around and behead Mersery with the very tip of his blade.

Right when this was about to occur, Irostenese released a fire blast so hot, that it was white. It slammed against the Makuta, right when Mersery fired his giant sonic blast. The both hit the Makuta at the same time, and a huge vortex of flame exploded from Serrakaan. It spiraled upward, and Exploded once more. Serrakaan was sent slamming into the outer wall. Burnt and slightly wounded. Irostenese ran toward Mersery and jumped up to the top of the wall where he was and said.

"We need to go now! It won't stop him for long!"

Right after he said that, a huge flail came swinging in a one hundered and eighty degree ark, headed strait toward their position. Mersery grabbed Irostenese and pulled him over the edge of the wall and outside of the compound just in time before the spiked flail made a crushing impact on where they were standing. Mersery looked up and saw the damage done. If they had been one second to late, they would have been easily killed.

Makuta Serrakaan soon leapt up to that position and blasted a bolt of black lightning right at them. Irostenese this time grabbed Mersery, and used his fire powers to rocket them a good distance away from the ensueing explosion. They both hid behind one of the large cliff faces, and Irostenese came up with a plan.

"Listen Mersery. See that ship out there? I have a certain transmitter linked to the mast of the ship. I need you to go there, and you will find a console at the base of the mast. There are three dials on the console. I need you to flip the first one as high as it will go, leave the middle one in mid range, and make the last one go as high as it can. After you have done that, I need you to push the activation switch."

Mersery took all of this information in, but asked.

"What is it for?"

(Irostenese) "I have no time to explain, now go!"

Mersery left, but was almost hit with a bolt of black lightning. It blasted him to the shore, and he was lying on his face in the sand. He looked up and saw the tall, dark, Makuta aiming for another blast, when Irostenese leapt out and blasted him with a massive fire blast. Irostenese was giving the Makuta all he had, and Mersery knew that he had better complete his task quickly in order to get back and help his friend.

He used his power of water to skii all the way to the ship. He got there in little time, and soon found the console right where Irostenese said to look for it. He soon found the dials, and positioned them in the correct order, just as Irostenese instructed. After that, he pushed the activation switch. A beam of blue light came from the tip of the mast, and shot strait into the darkened night sky. The blue lazer stopped high in the air, and expanded in a blue circle, and then exploded with a loud ringing noise.

Mersery had no idea what this was supposed to accomplish, but he soon left the boat to help Irostenese back on shore. As he skiied back to shore, he saw about fifteen Rakshi walking toward the place that Serrakaan and Irostenese were fighting. He emediately summoned a wave behind him and it soon turned into a massive tidal wave. He rode the top of the wave all the way to shore and slammed it against the Rakshi. The Rakshi were crushed against the rocky terrain, and Mersery leapt off of the top of the wave and onto a tall rock, clear of the wreck.

He looked down at the battle between Irostenese and Serrakaan, and it was not looking good. Serrakaan was takeing the aggressiveness Irostenese had earlyer, and unleashing it on him two fold. Irostenese was looking conflicted, as if he were trying to restrain his use of power. Serrakaan even let Irostenese have a small opening in the fight, but Irostenese purposefully did not take it.

Irostenese was still puting forth the effort to dodge all of Serrakaan's attacks, and he was doing quite well at it to. Everything was begginning to look positive for a second, but then, the situation changed. Irostenese had just dodged a shadow blast, and accidentally misplaced his foot over the edge of a cliff. He was trying to regain his balance, but the Makuta was not in the mood to wait. The Makuta raised his arm, and out of the folds of his sleeve, came an arrow like projectile. Due to Irostenese loseing his balance and nearly falling off the cliff, the aim of the arrow was not as acurrate as Serrakaan had planned.

The arrow went strait into Irostenese' shoulder. The foce of the arrow, and the sheer pain of it, sent Irostenese stumbleing backwards, and over a cliff!!!!

Mersery dropped his jaw when he saw this, and he screamed.


Makuta Serrakaan looked up at Mersery, and aimed his arm toward him, most likely to shoot Mersery with the same projectile. Three arrows left the folds of his sleeve, one right after the other. Mersery blocked the first two with his staff, but the last one barely struck his hand. He let go of his staff, starttled, and hurt. He looked down to see where the Makuta had gone, and he could not see him. He suddenly turned around, and there he was!

Makuta Serrakaan grabbed Mersery by the throat. He lifted him off the ground and over the cliff. He looked into Mersery's eyes for a moment. He stared into them, studying the Mersion. After about ten seconds of this, he threw Mersery far to the ground. Mersery hit the ground with a loud thud, his right shoulder blade being peirced by a sharp rock.

Mersery screamed in agony, as he could feel it grinding against his inner armor. He moved off the rock, very slowly, and very painfully. He crawled a few feet away, only to find the dark Makuta to have appeared right in front of him. The Makuta watched as Mersery groaned in pain, as if the groans and cries gave him pleasure.

Despite the pleasure he got from this, he decided that this Mersion had outlived his value as prey. He raised his hand and pointed at Mersery. Mersery started bleeding from his mouth, nose, and open wounds. He began chokeing and gagging on his own blood. He turned his head and looked out to sea, thinking that the glistening stars that radiated off of the water was going to be the last thing he saw. But what he saw was very strange to him, as he had never seen it before.

In the water, was a tube-like wave headed strait for the shore. Makuta Serrakaan saw it and lowered his hand, and looked out to sea. Suddenly, out of the water, rose a giant sea snake-like Monster. It roared when it burst from the waves, and it looked at Makuta Serrakaan. Its first thought, or its only thought, was to kill whatever it saw, and the first thing it saw, was Serrakaan.

Serrakaan halted his bloody asault on Mersery to take a look at the giant beast. It was standing thirty feet high in the ocean, and Serrakaan had guessed that the rest of it was under the waves, makeing it one of the largest Rahi he had seen.

Serrakaan had little time to contemplate anything else when a massive tail whipped out of the water and slammed into him. It knocked Serrakaan all the way from the rocky beach, to the wall surrounding Destral. The hard metal wall dented on impact with Serrakaan's body, and Serrakaan landed on his hands and knees, stunned by the sheer force that proppelled him that far.

The massive beast then turned to Mersery. Mersery was almost unconsciouse from the amount of blood loss, but he saw the beast staring at him, as if he were going to be its next meal. Mersery struggled to move, but he could not.

The beast was beanding down to devour Mersery, when a very large spiked flail slammed into its head, right under the eye. The beast roared in pain, as the blow knocked off a little armor. The beast rose up and looked at the hooded figure who launched the projectile. It roared at him, and slithered from the ocean to the rocky shore, and began to strike at Serrakaan with its tail. Serrakaan was teleporting away from each strike, easily avoiding the attack.

Mersery felt the vibrations of the beasts tail striking the ground. Luckily he was far enough away from the fight to be clear of any harm, but the harm Serrakaan had already inflicted was bad enough. He was just about to black out, when he heard footsteps on the rocks behind him.

He looked up to see what it was, and to his shock, it was Irostenese! He apparently pulled the arrow out of his shoulder, and just by the way he was walking, it obviousley did some internal damage. He knelt down to Mersery and said.

"Hang on Mersery. Were almost out of here. We can make it! Just lean up and I'll carry you if need be."

Mersery leaned up, and when he did, unbearable pain struck him in his shoulder. Blood spurted out from where he had landed on that rock when Serrakaan dropped him, and the pain was merciless. Not only that, but he was bleeding very fast from there. Irostenese looked at the wound, and then turned to Mersery's head, and said.

"I can stop the bleeding, but it won't be painless. You will need to bear it if you are going to survive."

He tore the edge off his robe and folded it a few times, then he put it in Mersery's mouth.

"Bite down on this as hard as you can, and try not to move. Are you ready?"

Mersery shook his head, meaning yes. Irostenese looked as if he did not want to do this, but it was his only option. He ignighted a very hot flame in his hand, it was so hot, that it was white and blue. He leaned it down to Mersery's shoulder, and then, he counted to three.


He instantly plunged his burning hot flame into Mersery's shoulder. Mersery yanked his head back in pain, and Irostenese heard his muffled scream. Mersery bit down onto the cloth, but it seemed to do little good. He heard the hiss of burning flesh, and smelled it burning too. Tears ran from his eyes, as Irostenese had to hold it there for ten long seconds. The pain was getting worse by the second, but it was almost over.

Irostenese yanked his hand off of the wound. The wound had been cauterized completely, and the blood stopped flowing. Mersery took the cloth out of his mouth, and screamed at the top of his lungs.

Serrakaan looked toward them, and saw that they were both yet still alive. He instantly began to charge a bolt of black lightning, and was about to fire at the unsuspecting O.O.M.N. members, when suddenly Mersery leapt up from the ground off his back, and he grabbed his staff, and shot a small sonic blast right at Serrakaan's outstretched hand.

The sonic blast struck Serrakaan's hand, inturrupting the conduit of black lightning, and sending the enormouse power explodeing right in Serrakaan's hand. The explosion that followed was MASSIVE, and it sent Serrakaan's body slamming into the cliff face, crumbleing it to peices and emitting a dusty smoke cloud from where Serrakaan landed.

Irostenese then told Mersery to grab around his back. Mersery reached his arms around his shoulders and waited for what Irostenese was going to do next. Irostenese then pointed his hands toward the ground, and unleashed a cuncussive fire blast that rocketed both of them high into the air. Then Irostenese shot fire from his feet and his fists, steering them strait toward the ship. He stoped the fire blasts when he was over the ship and after a few seconds of falling, he made a light touchdown onto the ship.

They both smiled, as Irostenese shot two constant fire blasts behind the ship, and Mersery blasted air into the sails. The ship quickly sped away, and they were out of range of any attack within one minute of sailing. As Mersery looked back, he hoped he would never have to go back to tat horrible island, at least not alone, but then again, he wasn't alone, Irostenese came and helped him escape, and without his help, Mersery doubted his chances for escaping. With Destral behind him, he laid down on the deck of the ship, and stared up into the night sky. It was almost dawn, and the sun would soon come up.

Back on Destral, Serrakaan rose from the wreck around him. That blasted Mersion, against all odds, actually hurt him, and damaged his armor. Serrakaan looked at his hand where the explosion originated, and it was completely blown off. This angered Serrakaan greatly, as only a nove blast of energy could penetrate his armor, and the Mersion was smart enough to wait for Serrakaan to forge one of the only elements that could do so at its normal intensity!? It was outrageous!!!!

Serrakaan lowered his hand. No blood came from the wound, only a black, smokish substance. The black smoke withered into the shape of a hand, and then, it became solid, and it almost looked as if his hand had never been removed. After this, Serrakaan turned his attention back to Sarkanian. The beast was about to bite down on Serrakaan when the explosion took place, and Sarkanian's head was launched into the wall of Destral, stunning it for a momment.

But now, it was back to its normal , angry state, as it loomed over Serrakaan. Serrakaan raised one of his hands toward it, inteanding to make it's blood explode from its body, but nothing happened. Serrakaan had a confused expression, as the beast should have had some reaction, but it did nothing. After a few more seconds the beast's head struck out and nearly enveloped Serrakaan in its jaws, but Serrakaan teleported to another place, sending the monsters jaws crashing into the rocks behind where he once stood.

The monster turned quickly and slammed its tail right into Serrakaan, sending him skidding across the rocky beach. Serrakaan rose, and leapt high into the air, and blasted the monster with a large downward shadow blast right in between the eyes. The monster's head reeled back, but it rebounded very quickly and narly crushed Serrakaan with its tail.

Serrakaan moved away, almost so fast that he appeared to teleport. He then emitted a power scream so loud, that the monster's sense of hearing went completely numb. The power scream continued, and the monster was starting to show signs of weakness. Blood exited its nose, not from the power of Serrakaan's mask, but from the sheer volume of the power scream. Serrakaan almost tamed the beast, when it slithered back into the water, and hid from the noise.

Serrakaan stopped his assault. Loud noise almost always was a weakness to rahi, and even to the Sarkanian, it proved effective. Serrakaan had finally driven it away, and he was now to devot his attention to the escapeing O.o.M.N members. They were almost out of reach, but not out of sight, which Serrakaan used to his advantage. He saw the Mersion on board, and that was all he needed to do.

Mersery felt a sudden temptation to look back upon Destral, and when he did, he saw the Makuta, standing there on the beach. His eyes were suddenly attracted to the darkness under the Makuta's hood. Suddenly, he saw to red lights emit from the darkness. They stared strait into his eyes, and for several moments, the gaze was held. Mersery felt a cold feeling come over him. It was a feeling of hoplessness, of despair, and of sheer Terror.

Mersery could not break the trace, no matter how much he wanted to look away, he couldn't. He could hear a dark voice inside his head, whispering dark things, things that he could never forget. The voice was overpowering, yet had not tone. It was like a strong wind, and it's whisper was loud, and strong. It was ancient, and it imbeaded fear in the back of his mind.

"You cannot hide. Darkness calls for your soul."

Mersery could not look away, everything began to go dark around Serrakaan, and Mersery's knees started to buckle. Suddenly Irostenese tackled him to the floor, and broke the trance. Mersery shook his head, it almost felt as if he had just come out of a dream. Irostenese grabbed his attention, and said.

"Are you alright? Did you look into his eyes? "

Mersery shook his head yes, not sure what Irostenese was getting at. Irostenese got a grim look on his face, as if something very bad had just happened. For Mersery did not know what happened to those who stare into the eyes of the Blood Summoner.

Serrakaan felt that despite losing the two intruders, he had accomplished something with the Mersion. The Mersion did not know, but Serrakaan had just planted something in the back of his mind, that will have long lasting, if not permanent effects.

Serrakaan was about to turn and leave, when a large pillar of water errupted from the ocean and slammed him into the rocks behind him. He stood up, and saw that the Sarkanian monster was not quite done with him. It slammed its tail down hard on Serrakaan. When it lifted its tail, Serrakaan looked a little dazed. The monster then struck him with its tail and sent him crashing into the rocks again.

Serrakaan was rather dazed from the MASSIVE blows, and he could almost not even stand. The monster was about to slam it's tail on him once again, but when it was only a few feet from crushing Serrakaan, Serrakaan stopped the tails trojectory with magnetizm.

The monster was forceing its tail slowly down onto him, and it was almost touching his hand when Serrakaan forced the tail aside, and teleported away. He appeard up on top of a cliff and charged a very large lightning sphere, and launched it right at the monsters head.

Lightning burst from the sphere and spread all over the monster's body. The monster screamed in pain, as the electricity coursed through its entire body. After about thirty seconds of the electric shock, the monster fell to the ground with a loud boom. Serrakaan slowly walked toward it, unfortunately the monster was not as wounded as it appeared to be. Serrakaan stopped right in front of it, and he slowly drew his sword from under the folds of his cloak. He raised the blade over its head, ready to stabb it down through its skull.

Right when he was about to unleash the final blow, the monster opened its eyes and spat out a large amount of water from its mouth, forcing Serrakaan off balance. Then it reached out with its tounge, wrapped it around Serrakaan's arm, and pulled his arm into its mouth. It chomped down on his arm, and it began to shake Serrakaan's body all over the place.

Serrakaan was able to finally plant both feet on to its large cheek bones, and pushed his body away as hard as he could. Serrakaan was no longer being affected very much from the shaking, but he still could not get his arm out of the beast's mouth.

He suddeny had an idea flash through his brain. He felt the tounge still wrapped around his arm for extra support, so he emediately thought of a way to make it let go. He sent electrical shockwaves courseing through its tounge, and down its throat. The monster was shakeing in pain, but it did not let go!

Serrakaan then decided that he had one more option, and that it was far more effective. He sent a huge blast of air down its windpipe, and into its lungs. He sent a continuous flow of such strong currents, that he was able to burst one of the Sarkanians lungs!

The Sarkanian's eyes widened, and it unwrapped its tounge from around Serrakaan's arm. It barely opened its mouth, but that was all Serrakaan needed. He planted his other hand and both of his feet into its jaws, and useing his full strength, he yanked his hands and feet in opposite directions.

He heard a loud snap and crackle, and the creature roared in enormouse pain. Serrakaan fell to the ground, quickly followed by the creatures head, which landed right in front of him. Serrakaan got up and slowly approached the creature, with the intent of using a vacuume on it, and takeng all of the air from its lungs, so as to knock it uncounscieouse. He reached out his hand, was about to possibly kill the creature, when suddenly an alarm went off in the back of his mind.

He looked behind him, and realized that it was not as dark as it was earlyer. He then realized one more thing, and it was vitally important. The sun was rising.

The sunlight bent and curled with the grooves around the Destral fortress behind him, and a little ray hit him from behind. Smoke began to rise from his shoulders, and from under his hood. He let out a loud scream, and he dashed away for a shodowy cave from in one of the cliffs, and dissappeared into the darkness. After a few moments, the Sarkanian slithered slowly into the water, going to the deepest parts of the ocean to lick its wounds, but the Sarkanian had retrieved Serrakaan's scent, and after he had fully healed, there would be no place for him to hide, where Sarkanian would not find him.

Chapter 7 ~ Dark Repercussions.[]

The sun had finally risen over the gloomy island that was Destral. Just momments ago the island was in an uproar because of two unwanted visitors. The Makuta dealt severely with the intruders, yet they both managed to escape. This did not at all please the Makuta, as the intruders managed to inflict much damage to sites of great importance around Destral, the most important being the Library. However, now there was nothing to be done. The intruders had escaped, and the Makuta would just have to lick their wounds for now.

This however was far from the first of Makuta Courtesance's ideas. In her mind, the intruders kicked in the front door of their house, stole their property, killed their guards, and destroyed their valueables. This was an enormace offense to anyone, but to a Makuta, there was hardly anything more insulting.

She was not the forgiving type, and all she could think about was finding these intruders, and killing them. They obviousely were not on the right side of the law, seeing as they had to sneek in to steal something, instead of just announceing their arrival and letting the Makuta welcome them inside te fortress as guests, despite the fact that this was a very rare occurrence, if they had any good intensions, they would not have had to trespass without clearance.

Courtesance had to put these thoughts in the back of her mind for now. She was headed to the library to see if the repares were being seen too. As she was walking, she spotted Makuta Dredzek walking toward her. He was going to pass her by, but she stopped him and asked.

"Dredzek. What's the report on the damage done to the fortress?"

Dredzek rolled his eyes, he did not like talking to anyone, but Courtesance was not easy to avoid, so he may as well apease her couriosity.

"The most damage was done near the Southeastern section of the fortress. Apparently while we had the first intruder in our custody, the second intruder raided Benjarmin's armory, took most of his weapons, and set them around the fortress to act as distractions for the Mersion to escape."

(Courtesance) "This is to unbeleivable. How did the intruder know where to look for that kind of weaponry?!! Ugh!!! Did Serrakaan and Terradon kill them?"

(Dredzek) "Apparently not. Terradon went to the library looking for something, and Serrakaan entered the fortress and went down into the catacombs to hide, as usual. But it is apparently a good thing they are not dead. Miserix just found out about your response to the intruders being found, and just to put it in kind words, he was not happy."

(Courtesance) "I will report to Miserix later. But until then I am going to the library. I want to see to its repairs personally."

After this was said, her and Dredzek parted ways and she headed to the library. Despite the damage, alot of it was still in good shape. It was a very large room, so there was alot that went unscathed during the battle inside. She was surprised when she found Terradon in the library actually looking for something, as she assumed he would be the first to begin repairs.

"Terradon. What are you doing? Why would you pick now to sit around idle and usless when half the library is in shambles?"

Terradon slowly turned his head, and looked at her. He was not the type to talk either, but for the same reason as Dredzek, he responded.

"I believe I have found the identity of one of our intruders. His name is Mersery. He is a Mersion from the island of Versuva, and was one of the beings that made up their counsel of eight. He played a part in disbanding the group, and he has since been off the grid. He dissappeared, and no one truly knows exactly where he had gone. Mersery was known to have been a very pronounced scientist, and he was obviousely and excellent combatant. Some rumors report that he was a member of the Hand of Artakah, but seeing as no official roster had ever been discovered, this is only a rumor, and it can't be proven. But if this were true, it would explain his powers and his skills in combat."

(Courtesance) "What would a former Hand of Artakah member be doing skulking around our fortress for, who sent him, and why. He must have been well paid in order to have the audacity to come here, and yet, his partner makes me think otherwise. That perhapse it was not a random contract, but an assignment. Did the Mersion have any other connections to other organizations before he dissappeared?"

(Terradon) "His biography does not say. It does say that his last known appearance was him meeting an unknown visitor to Versuva. It is said that after he met with the visitor, he was never seen on the island from then on."

(Courtesance) "I want to know just who this visitor was that made contact with him, and why he chose to leave Versuva. I will persue this line of inquiry later however, for now I must go to report to Miserix."

After this she left the librar and went down to the throne room, Miserix was speaking with Dredzek, and the look on Miserix's face was not one of joy. After they stoped speaking, Dredzek left and now it was only Courtesance and Miserix in the room. She stepped forward and gave a bow of respect to Miserix.

"I understand you requested my presence."

Miserix looked at her with a very stern look on his face.

"I understand that it was you who decided to treat these intruders as hostiles, correct?"

She shook her head yes, and waited for him to speak.

"I also understand that it was you who engaged this intruder with violence, and destroyed half of the library in the process. Also, Dredzek tells me that Benjarmin's armoy was emptied out in order to make sufficient booby traps for our own inside the fortress. Seeing as the majority of my Exo Toa are being prepared as repair units to half of the fortress, I would say that the traps worked quite well. And all I can say is, the more I think about it, if you had merely approached the situation with less hostility, then maybe you and the intruder could have come to some understanding, and not have destroyed half of my fortress just to let them escape. So in essence, YOU ACCOMPLISHED NOTHING!!!!!!!!!!!!! Not only that, but you have managed to blacken our reputation as intollerent, voilent, and dangerouse creatures who will kill on site of an intruder!!!!!!!!!! This is a very large dissappointment to me Courtesance. I had hoped you would have approached the situation with more integrity. Not only this, but you also managed to have dragged several of our brothers down with you, by enlisting their aid in finding these intruders, and killing them, as if you were in authority to do so!!!!!!! The next time there is an intruder, you WILL run the information by me, before you start tareing down my island trying to kill them. Understood?"

Courtesance shook her head and left the throne room. She had hoped that Miserix would have been more understanding of the situation, but he did strike a point. What was accomplished? Courtesance went to her quarters and sat on a chair, pensive in thought. She still was going to find out who the intruder was, and why he came here. This Mersion could not have come here out of just sheer will, he would have had to have been told where to go, and where to look for what he was sent to retrieve. Someone hired him to do this, and Courtesance was going to find out, right after she saw that repairs were made to the library. No one should be able to have gotten away with theft from a Makuta, and Courtesance was going to make sure, that it never happened again.

Meanwhile, on a boat on the way to Daxia.

Mersery was leaning agains the rail of the ship. He was quite relaxed, as the night before had been quite exausting. Despite the fact that he retained many injuries, he could not deny that he had overcome many challenges that night. Not only did he defeat two Makuta in single combat, but he also fought the Legendary Blood Summoner and survived the experience. However, despite all of his accomplishments, he could not deny that the help of his new friend, certainly kept him alive, and that he would probably not have escaped if it were not for his help.

Mersery leaned forward and began to speak with Irostenese, after all, he had alot of questions to ask him.

"Why did you come after me to Destral? I mean, you knew that Helryx assigned me the mission, so why come and be sure that I had completed it?"

(Irostenese) "I did not come after you to make sure that the mission was complete. I came after you to help protect you. After you left, I realized that even if you did get inside Destral, there would be great danger awaiting you inside. Also, I believed that it was a little out of place for Helryx to have you go this mission alone."

(Mersery) "It was you who set all of those traps to distract the Makuta, wasn't it?"
(Irostenese) "Yes it was."

(Mersery) "I have to say, if it were not for you, I would never have escaped. Thank you."

(Irostenese) "You are very welcome."

(Mersery) "I must say, I never expected you to be such a powerful combatant. I mean, I have never seen you go on a mission, even in the Hand of Artakah. And Helryx never assigns you any missions, so I just assumed that you were not really combat orriented. You just always seemed very peaceful, and rather less likely to take action."

(Irostenese) "You are quite right. I have not taken any missions for a very long time, and there is a reason for this. A long time ago, when the Hand of Artakah was first formed, we believed that the end, justified the means. We would do anything to meet the goal that had been set, and we would not back down when there was someone or something that may pose a threat to the world. I was created to serve the will of Mata Nui, and in the Hand of Artakah, I did just that. However, for many years, I wanted more power. I craved it, and desired to reach great hights with it. For years I trained myself in many forms of combat, and in many elements, all to reach the same goal, to achieve extreme power. Eventually I became a very powerful person, and I was usually the first to be chosen to go out on a mission. I helped the Hand conquer many challenges, and I felt as though I had no flaws, and that I was perfect. That was until one day, the Hand had met an enemy that was in possession of an incredible power. His new found power rivaled my own, and in the ensueing battle, I lost control of my powers, and went into an uncontrolled rage. And in my rage, I not only managed to destroy half of an island, but I also took the lives of many innocent beings. I could almost not even live with such shame. My quest for power back fired in the worst way possible, and since then, I have been in exile. "

(Mersery) "It is my opinion that power is best put in the hands of those who do not wish to have it."

(Irostenese) "Truer words were never said my friend. It took a long time afterward for me to realize that. But it even took longer to realize this, Power and Perfection are over rated. If you have a choice for happiness and peace, it would be far wiser to choose it, rather than power. I am glad that you have learned this lesson early on, and have not been humbled as I have."

(Mersery) "So when you were in battle with the Makuta, you were not using your powers to the maximum capability? Why would you hold back at the risk of defeat?"

(Irostenese) "My battle was not with the Makuta. The Makuta were rightfully protecting their land, and I did not see fit to attempt to kill a being for fighting for what was theirs."

(Mersery) "But would the world not be better without this Makuta Serrakaan? After all the things he has done, I had assumed that death would have it out for him."

(Irostenese) "So far, his abilities have been directed toward the darker forces of this world such as murderers, thieves, and traitors. Despite his rather dark and ruthless methodes, he has not commited acts that could be considered unjust, or completely treacherous. So I have no real reason to treat him as an enemy."

(Mersery) "I suppose that is one way to look at things. But I have to disagree with you on one thing. The things that he has done to traitors and murderers..... It is almost too cruel for a punishment. I mean, he literally scares opponents to death, and those who are not afraid, he kills. I don't think that he has any light in him, only darkness."

(Irostenese) "I suppose you are right. But all the same, I am cautious to make any judgments on the Makuta. Miserix is a just leader. One who will stick up for what is right. But he does however keep Serrakaan on a short leash, and so far, Serrakaan has not been known to have murdered an innocent. I hope that we never have reason to war with the Brotherhood. The combined streangth of the Makuta is very powerful."

(Mersery) "Why are you so quick to be an advocate to the Brotherhood?"

(Irostenese) "I used to be on good terms with them. But since then, my realations with Miserix have drifted away. But that is the price you pay being a part of a secret organization. It limits social skills."

(Mersery) "You are right about that. I have not been to see my own people in quite some time. I miss them. I would almost do anything to be with them again. But, in the absence of old friends, I have gained new ones, such as Axon, Brutaka, Hydraxon, You. They make being isolated from the outside world somewhat worth while."

Irostenese smiled at this comment, as he and Mersery looked out at the beautiful ocean, with the waves carying the gleam of the sun wherever they go. The pink and purple sky glitering off of the waters made the scenery completely calm, There was almost no noise, all accept the waves brushing against the side of the ship. The smell of the salty air combined with all of this, was almost enoughto put one to sleep. As the observed all of this, the saw the island of Daxia on the horizon. After about thirty more minutes of sailing, they docked at the harbor, and left the ship. Tey both walked all the way down the winding path, leading to the fortress. Once they got inside, they were greeted by a few close friends, and they regailed them of their journey to Destral, and their narrow escape. As they were about to part ways, Mersery said his goodbyes to Irostenese.

"Once again, thank you for everything. You are in my debt."

"The pleasure was mine Mersery. I will tell you what. You go to your quarters and get cleaned up, and I will run the report by Helryx. And while your at it, let me have the tablet you retrieved from the library."

(Mersery) "I am afraid it's broken."

(Irostenese) "I can peice it together, should only take a couple of hours. Farwell Mersery."

(Mersery) "Farwell Irostenese"

They bumped fists, almost as if the were Toa, and Mersery handed the bag with the peices of the tablet in it to Irostenese, and he made off for his quarters. Irostenese went strait to the throne room, where he was going to give his report to Helryx. He had alot to speak with her about, and so he decided to do it as soon as he could.

He walked down a few passageways, up a few staircases, and into the throne room. Helryx sat in the main chair, and she acted a little surprised to see him, yet she was also pleased.

"Irostenese. It's been a while. How are you?"

(Irostenese) "I am better than I have been for some time. I have come to report a mission's success. Mersery went to Destral and succeeded in getting a tablet that had much vital information written about Makuta Serrakaan. I will be in the process of translating it later."

(Helryx) "Why the sudden personal interest Irostenese? How come Mersery did not come to report the mission personally?"

(Irostenese) "Because Mersery was a little worse for wear. He retained many wounds on this mission, yet he still prevailed. And as for a personal interest, I went with him on the mission."

There was a sudden silence in the room. Helryx had an awkward expression on her face, and she seemed surprised, and a little dissappointed.

(Helryx) "Did Mersery request that you acompany him on this mission?"

(Irostenese) "No he did not. But he indicated to me before he went, that he was going alone. So after he left, I went after him."

(Helryx) "Why did you go after him?"

(Irostenese) "Why did you send him alone?! Going to Destral is potential suicide if you have not been there before, and infiltrateing the main fortress is especially dangerouse! I kept asking myself this on my way back, and now I am going to ask you. Why on earth did you send him on such a dangerouse mission alone!?"

(Helryx) "It was an infiltration mission. The more people who went on the mission, the more likely they were to be caught. So I sent Mersery alone. He took to the mission with enthusiasm, and did not show hesitation where the location was concerned. Why are you so concerned on his behalf?"

(Irostenese) "Because if I had not gone after him, the odds are he most likely would not be alive. Makuta Serrakaan himself , along with two other Makuta, tried to kill him, and they almost succeeded. If you had no other agents to spare, why did you not ask me to acompany him?"

(Helryx) "I am not going to bring up the past Irostenese, but the fact of the matter is you have not been sent on a mission just because of what happened in the Hand all of those years ago. You are a valuable agent, and a good friend, but you can see why I am hesitant to send you on a mission. "

(Irostenese) "That was a long time ago. Do you think that I have not tormented myself about that day for so long. I vowed I would never lose control like that ever again, and I went on this mission, I faced Makuta Serrakaan, and I kept that vow. I am not the same person I was all those years ago."

(Helryx) "But you are still just as strong, and you know that is true. You may be older, but you and I both know what you are capable of, and for that, I am still hesitant to send you on a mission. It is nothing personal, but I worry for the saftey of not only you, but the saftey of others as well. Now I am pleased that you helped Mersery, and I am glad that you did keep yourself aware, but the next time you dicide to go on a mission that involves one of my best agents, please inform me."

(Irostenese) "Very well. I am sorry to bring up unpleasant times. I mean no disrespect. "

(Helryx) "Neither do I, old friend."

They exchanged a friendly glance, and clasped eachother by the arm as a sign of friendship. After this, Irostenese went to his quarters and sat on a white chair. He poured out the contents of Mersery's bag, and found a broken tablet, in about forty peices. The tablet was somewhat large in size, so the peices were in a way, easy to conect, with a strong adhesive.

After about a few solid hours, he had the whole tablet spread out on a large table. He had finaly finished it, and he was biggining to translate what it had written on it.

"In the beggining was spawned a soul, in which much darkness flowed. Where his brothers new darkness and fear, he had become it's incarnate form. His shadow cast across stone, was darker than the night sky with no moon. As the shadows bend and wither in the sun, so will his dark form be cast out with it. Speaketh he not, as his voice brings only despair, and void of comfort. His eyes glow red as the blood he draws forth from those who see them. Those who stare into them know they are void of life, and only see death. Darkness, and madness, welcome those who see his eyes. As they sleep, his dark hand will touch their minds, and carve deep scars in their hearts. His voice echoes in the darkened shadows, bringing death, despair, and sorrow. You will feel the sting of death, in the shadow of his wake, as once warmth ran though your veins, is soon replaced by the feeling of winters chill. You will close your eyes, and hide your face, so as to block his visage from you sight. And at last, you will scream for air, but your lungs will fill with blood. Be of great caution, as to escape his dark presence. As only She who brings the sharpened light, will ever be the one to cast him from this world, and into the shadow of death. May no other be able to assail, he who brings the night. For no other blade may vanquish him, and no other hand destroy him. May ye be warned of his dark soul, and his crave for the souls of others. Stray from the shadows, and take to the light, and he will not be able to cast his shadow over you. May the light that shines over all protect you from his dark hand, for woe to those, who alone, linger in the dark."

After Irostenese finished reading it, he was a little concerned as to who wrote this tablet. It seemed to not be written by a Makuta, and yet if they did not write it, who did? Either way, it gave some insight into Makuta Serrakaan's powers, and weaknesses. From what the tablet indidcates, he has some vulnerability to sunlight, but that knowledge was already revealed otherwise. It also seemed to indicate that he could access someones mind and give them something like visions, perhapse nightmares, by stareing into the victems eyes. As soon as he thought of this, he remembered that Mersery held a long stare with Makuta Serrakaan directly in the eyes. But seeing as his mind was shielded, there may be little cause for concern.

Another thing that was interesting to Irostenese, was that the tablet seemed to prophesy who was to kill the Blood Summoner. Somone who brings the sharpened light. Now he thought that sharpened light could perhapse mean either sunlight, or perhapse lightning. It also indicates that if you are in sunlight, you may have some resistance to his powers, but it is unsure.

Irostenese took the tablet and documented it in the library. Seeing as it was an important peice of information, he placed it into the important documents section. After this he looked out the large window, and noticed that the sun was going down. Another day finally eclipsed. He felt comfort however. On Daxia, there was nothing that could hurt him, nothing that could bring ill intentions or anger. Only peace.

He headed back to his quarters, getting ready for another full nights sleep. He walked past Mersery's quarters, and he suddenly got an ominouse feeling, as if something dark were looming over his mind like a cloud. He opened the door to his quarters and saw Mersery standing in the well lit room.

"Is everything alright in here?"

(Mersery) "Yes, everything is fine. Did you repair the tablet?"

(Irostenese) "Yes I did. I put it in the important documents section of the library. You can see it tomorrow after you have had a good nights rest. After all we went through yesterday, believe it is going to be something well earned. "

(Mersery) "No doubt. I have been wanting to go to sleep all day, just havn't gotten around to it. I finally got cleaned up good though. It took a while to get all the blood off of my armor, but I finally got it all off."

(Irostenese) "How is your shoulder?"

(Mersery) "Better than it was. I put some hot water on it, and it still stings to the touch, but I think it will most likely mend with time."

(Irostenese) "I certainly hope so. It was a nasty wound. Well, I just dropped by to check up on you. Good night Mersery."

(Mersery) "Good night my friend"

After this was said, Irostenese left, and Mersery blew out all of the candles, and turned out all of the lights. He crawled into his bed and shut his eyes. With the open window he was able it hear the waves crashing against the sandy shore. It was so peaceful, so quiet. And with the noise slowly repeating its soft course, Mersery soon fell asleep.

Mersery could hear the wind rustleing past the trees outside, and he soon felt a little chill. He got up and was going to shut the window, but when he opened his eyes, he was not even in his room. He was somewhere on a cliff face, and he did not even know where. He looked around. The cliff was situated on some island he had never been to, and in a place he had never seen before. There was a jungle behind him, and it was night, and there was no moon in the sky. He told himself that it was a dream, but he could see and feel everything so vividly, as if it were real, which made him second guess himself.

He walked toward the edge of the cliff, and looked down. He did not see anything at first, only rocks being hit by the white, foamy waves. But then, he looked down, and he saw something being beaten against the rocks. When the waves rolled back, he saw parts of armor, lots of armor. He saw masks, and chestplates, pretty much just dead remains of some poor victems.

He suddenly felt cold, and he had felt this feeling before, on Destral. A sharp chill went down his spine. He could feel eyes watching him, as if they were peircing into his back like knives. He then heard a voice inside his head. It was like a low whisper, and it sounded ancient, and non the less terrifying. It said.

"You cannot hide. I see you."

He turned to face the jungle, and saw a tall, hooded shadow. It slowly streched out its clawed hand, and pointed at Mersery. Mersery lost all feeling in his legs, and he fell to his knees. Suddenly, he began to cough up blood, and spewed it out on the rocks in front of him. Tears ran down his mask, but when he wiped them away, they were red.

He looked back toward the lage shadow. It slowly drew out a long sword from the folds of its cloak, and began to walk toward him, very slowly. Mersery could still not tell if it was a dream, he could feel every drop of blood go down his face, and he felt its cold essence in between his fingers.

The Blood Summoner was soon right in front of Mersery, and he slowley reached down and wrapped his cold fingers around Mersery's throat. Mersery could feel everything, and this convinced him beyond a shadow of a doubt that what he was experienceing, was real.

The Blood Summoner slowly picked him up by the throat, and began to poke his sword into Mersery's chest, slowley, very slowley. Mersery could feel the entire experience, as the blade went all the way into his chest, and poked out of his back. Slowly, he turned the blade in a clockwise circle. Blood was pooring out of both the entrance, and exit wounds.

After about three minutes of this torment, the Blood Summoner slowley withdrew the blade, and droped him on his back. Mersery rolled over, and screamed at the top of his lungs. He was crawling toward the edge of the cliff, and he tried to go over the edge, but he felt a heavy foot stomp on his back, and he heard a cracking noise go down his spine. He looked behind him and saw Serrakaan riase his sword and stabbed it into his shoulder. Mersery let out another scream, but he coughed, as he began to choke on his own blood.

On Daxia, at the same time.

Irostenese was sitting in his quarters. He felt that his days as a mission operative were numbered, and that he would have to spend the rest of his days sitting in his room, as he was doing now. However, at least he made a new friend that day, something that he considered a worth while thing to do. He only hoped that he would not lose his new friend like he had lost so many others.Despite all of this being on his mind, he dicided that he was going to go to sleep. He had nothing to do the next morning, but he figured another day had passed him by, so what should tomorrow be any different.

He was just about to shut his eyes, when he heard a blood curdleing scream, and it sounded like it was comeing from Mersery! He leapt up and ran down the hall to Mersery's quarters. He kicked open the door, and he saw something that shocked him. Mersery was shakeing wildly, and he had cut himself all up and down his arm and chest with a small, ornamental dagger. He was convulsing and vomiting, and he was choking on it as he was trying to scream.

Irostenese ran over to him, and Mersery swung wildly at him, trying to hit him. Mersery's eyes were glowing yellow, and he was moaning, and spitting up what was in his stomach, all over the floor. Irostenese almost fell in it, but he kept his balance as he tried to grab a hold of his friend. He was obviousely in some kind of trance, and Irostenese could not wake him up.

Mersery then suddenly began to wildly clutch at his shoulder, and scream in pain. He was drooling like a rabid energy hound, and he was foaming at the mouth. Irostenese was yelling at him to wake up, but not a single word could be heard. Irostenese quickly ran to get help, he called down the hall for anyone that would come. Several other members came and grabbed a hold of him. The were trying not to slip in his blood that was on the floor from his bleeding arm.

They were hauling him to the healing center, and he was shakeing and screaming wildly the whole way. They eventually strapped him down on a special table, and they had to tip it forward so he would not choke on his own vomit.

He was still shaking, and he was bending and twisting in all different kinds of strange positions. He screamed in pain, and they had to sedate him so as to keep him from breaking his bonds. They had no idea of what he was experiencing, and even if they did, they would not know how to help him.

In his nightmare, Serrakaan was doing an all manner of horrible things too him, things that no normal person could even survive, and under normal surcumstances, neither could Mersery, but in the dream, he could feel everything as if it were real, and he could not wake up.

This is not the first time Serrakaan has accessed someones mind through their dreams. He has done this to several people over the years, so as to make a sufficient torture. How he does it, is when he stares into your eyes, he plants a piece of his conciesness in the back of your mind. It would not really affect you at all if you were awake, but it emediately takes its course once the victem falls asleep. Serrakaan in a way, locks them in their own mind, and does terrible things to them, and everything is felt and perceived as real by the victem. The victem cannot die from wounds recieved in the dream, but they cannot control their own body, and typically will try and kill themselves if not restrained. The only thing that can end the dream is electrical shock, or the riseing of the sun. Other than that, the victem is pretty much hopeless.

Mersery's friends do not know any of this yet, and so Mersery will be doomed to a whole night of unspeakable torture, and attempted suicide. However, he has been restrained, and until they find a way to rehabilitate him, he is as good as Serrakaan's for the whole night.

Irostenese felt as it was his fault. He knew that something may happen, and yet he did not warn his friend, just out of the slight idea that maybe it wouldn't happen to someone with a shielded mind. But mind shield or not, the dream will take its course.

Irostenese sat in the same room with Mersery the whole night, and the whole night, Mersery was screaming, crying, and convulsing. He was haveing seizures and fits of unstopable screaming fits. He endured the whole night, not being able to wake up, and not being able to stop Serrakaan from doing the most indescribable things.

Irostenese thought it would never come, but the sun finally began to rise, and then, almost instantaneousely, Mersery stoped shakeing, and screaming, but he also flat lined!

Irostenese got an electrical discharger and held it to his chest. He shocked Mersery four times before his heart started to beat again. But even if Mersery was alive, he was still unconsciouse, And Irostenese waited for several more hours until finally, in midday, Mersery woke up.

He all of the sudden jolted awake, and screamed at the top of his lungs. After this, he looked confused, as he was tied to an operateing table. The order had already operated on him from his self inflicted injuries, and so far, he was in good health. Irostenese lossened the restraints and helped him off of the table.

(Iorstenese) "How are you feeling?"

(Mersery) "It wasn't real? No, it had to be real, it had to be, I should be dead. It couldn't have been a dream."

(Irostenese) "It was a dream. It just did not seem, or feel like it."

(Mersery) "You don't understand! I felt him stab me, I felt him cut me open and pull out my heart with his bare hand! I saw him do it, I felt it all!! There is no way it did not happen."

(Irostenese) "I am so sorry that you had to go through that, but as far as we knew, there was no way to safley interfere with the nightmare. But we already operated on you, so you are healthy, to a certain extent."

(Mersery) "Operated? So I was cut open."

(Irostenese) "Yes, but by your own hand. "

(Mersery) "How did he do this Irostenese? It was him the whole time, and it was not an act of innocent justice. This was molevalent torture!!!"

(Irostenese) "Remember when he looked into your eyes? On the ship, when you gazed back at Destral? Well I think that is when he did it. He somehow planted a piece of his conscieousness into the back of your mind, and when night rolled over, he was able to acess your mind, and make you believe that everything that he was doing to you in the dream, was real. I was worried that something would come of that moment on the ship, but I figured that since your mind was shielded from such things, you were safe. He must have used an incredible amount of energy if he was able to penetrate your mind shield."

(Mersery) "Is there any way of stoping it?"

(Irostenese) "I have a bad feeling that it will happen again tonight. A few years ago I read of a settlement of Matoran that had been supposedly infected by a parasite, but the Blood Summoner had made an appearance on the island just days before, so I made the link in between the two occasions. The dreams went on for years, until they were either dead, or they eventually wore off. The longest that the dreams went on was approximately fourteen years, three months, and thirteen days. And even after that, he would have one at least twice a year. In the end, he just could not take it anymore, and so he killed himself. "

(Mersery) "I do not want to go through fourteen days of this, let alone years! Is there any operating, any treatment, anything?!"

(Irostenese) "Well, while I had been in exile, I studied many things, includeing the brain. There are nine parts to the brain, each one containing feelings, memories, and nerve signal receivers. If Makuta Serrakaan planted his consceiousness into your mind, it would have to be in one of those nine sections. The only way I can think to stop these dreams, is to induce electrical shock directly to the certain lobe of the brain. But there is a huge amount of risk to do this, as the brain cannot withstand more than three electrical shocks, without permenant damage, and perhapse death."

(Mersery) "So basically, if we do not get the correct lobe, at least in the first three times, than I am dead."

(Irostenese) "I am afraid so. I am also afraid that we can only find the correct lobe, while the dream is takeing its course. It's the only way to find it."

(Mersery) "I am done either way. I am not sure if I can go through that again."

(Irostenese) "I am sorry, but it is the only way."

There was a long pause, as they both were not left with very good options, and they were not sure weather or not he would come out of it alive. There was a moment of intensity for Mersery, for he did not quite know weather or not he wanted to risk his permenant well being to do this. But all he had to do was remember the pain that he went through to realize, that he would be willing to risk it if he had to.

(Mersery) "I'll do it."

With that said, they began the long wait for sundown, and then the very ominouse moment when he would go to sleep, knowing that he would relive unspeakable torture, for the chance that he may be rid of these horrible nightmares.

Chapter 8 ~ A Risk Worth Taking.[]

Mersery laid on a table, and put his face into a little slot at the end of it. There were several brain surgical professionals in the room, prepareing to hook up several electrodes to Mersery's head. Once the nine electrodes were in place, Mersery was almost ready to begin the operation. He had not fallen asleep yet though, and in about twenty minutes, the sun was going to go down. Mersery took no comfort in the fact that the brain chemists were as nervouse as he was, and he new the reason why. There were nine lobes in the brain, and if they activated the electrodes more than three times, it would kill him, or possibly cause permanent brain damage. If they did not find the effected lobe, within three tries, he was as good as dead. A little comfort was given however due to the fact that Irostenese would participate in the procedure.

Iostenese provided him with some comforting information, that as soon as he hit the correct lobe of the brain with electricity, he would be launched out of the dream instantaneousely. This was indeed good news, but Mersery new that they had to hit the right one for that to happen, and they had a one in three chance of doing it. Despite the fact that the odds were not terrible, they weren't good.

Finally, one of the surgeons indicated that it was time to put Mersery under, so as to induce the dream. The injected him with a powerful tranquilizer, and for a few seconds nothing happened. Mersery new that it was only a matter of time before the anesthezia kicked in, so he was trying to think positive thought. They could hit the correct lobe on the first try, they could do it on the second try, but they would surely make it on the third attempt.

The surgeon then asked Mersery a question. "How long have you been in the Order of Mata Nui?" Mersery was about to give a full, and technical answer, when suddenly, everything went black. Mersery however felt as though he had just blinked and he was in another world. He saw a beautiful sunset in front of him, with colors that swarmed the sky, like yellow, blue, purple, and pink. It was a gorgeouse sight, and it made Mersery smile as he saw it.

However, as soon as the sun went down in the real world, it also did so in the dream world. The sun went down, and the moon shown out far brighter than in the dream before. There was enough light to see everything, but it was dim, and dark enough for discomfort.

Mersery new something was going to happen, but he did not know exactly what, it was as if in the dream, he were obliviouse to the potential danger. He walked about the cliff side, and was looking down at the waves. Everything seemed normal, everything untl he looked and saw a body down the path he was walking. He ran to see who it was. He knelt down and saw that there was a huge amount of blood loss. Even these signs sparked no memory of the night before. He turned the body over, so it was faceing up, and to his shock, it was him!

He was full of stabb marks, and his heart had been carved out. He recognized this at that moment, that this was what was left of his body the night before! While he was trying to understand this horror, he heard something move in the bushes behind him. He turned around, and he saw the same black figure comeing toward him. Mersery yelled, and he got up and ran as fast as he could down the path. He eventually reached the point where the dream started, and he looked around to see if there was anywhere to hide. The only place that was a possible escape root, was going into the jungle, something he did not wish to do in the dark, and under the current surcumstances.

He looked behind him to see the black figure slowly walking up the lane. He ran so many scinerios in his head about what he should do, and then, as if he had forgtten all about them, he remembered his powers. As soon as he made the recollection, he made the motion to blast the Blood Summoner off of the cliff. But when he did, nothing happened. He soon realized after two more attempts of this, that he had lost his powers!

He then realized, that to avoid the Blood Summoner, he had to run through the jungle to get away. He soon started running as fast as he could, as he brushed back branches and trees, and tall grass. He eventually, after running a strait distance for a little time, he ran out into a small open field. The moon made the grass look as if it were white, and the jungle surrounded this little plain of grass.

He made a full three sixty turn to see if he was being followed. As it turns out, there was nothing there. He looked around again, and there was nothing. As he was scanning the area, he could not help but notic how peacful, how traquil, this particular are was. The grass felt soft, and smooth under his feet. The area seemed to him a place of pure calm, as if nothing bad could happen here.

His attention was soon however grasped by the sudden snap of a twig off in the jungle. He looked around wildly, and as he turned suddenly, he saw the massive shadow right behind him. He yelled and ran in the oposite direction, terror griping him, and panic swarming his mind. He ran into the jungle once more, and as he did, only a few feet into the jungle, was a cliff, and at the bottom of it, were rocks, and parts and peices of dead armor and masks, with blood stains covering them. Despite his best effort to maintain his balance, he could not stop himself from plummeting over the edge and slamming into all of the peices and parts of what used to be liveing beings.

He rolled over onto his back, a little dazed from the fall, and as he looked up to the top of the cliff, he saw the darkened shadow, and it was looking down at him, with visible, bright red eyes looking right at him. This sight terrified him, and he leapt up and ran into the jungle and ran onto a stone path. He decided to follow the path through what was now a thickened forest of tall trees. He began frantically running and as he did, he looked behind him. He saw red eyes flashing in between the trees, and this only fueled his terror. He ran, and noticed that the path was going upward into some mountains. He kept running, and saw the black shadow behind him at every turn. He would occasionally stumble, and at one point he yelled, "Keep Away From Me!!!!!!"

At this point, he suddenly felt a mind numbing pain go though his head, and he fell forward, and held his head for a second, and he was all dizzy and a little nausciouse. But one look behind him got him going again, and he ran up the path as fast as his legs could carry him. He eventually saw a dark cave out in front of him, and it was at the end of the path. He was not going inside, but then a look behind him changed his mind.

He ran ahead, and down the stairs in the cave. He kept running down the stairs, and suddenly, the stairway took a sharp turn. He bounced his hand off the wall, and sharply turned the corner. As he did he nearly fell off into a black pit that lie before him. He yelled and fell forward. He grabbed the edge of the stairway, and noticed that he was now in an open cave, and there was no floor to it, there was only one pathway, and it was an old stone walkway. He climbed up, and suddenly, he got a head splitting pain in his head again.

He knelt down, and he had to vomit from the nauscia. He wiped it from his mouth and continued down the stone passage that was carved into the rock. Despite the fact there was a long drop, he was still running as fast as he could. He was being as careful as he could, but he could still feel the terror of being chased, his heart was pounding, and he was trying not to shake from his uncontrolled fear.

He finally saw light at the end of the cave, and he ran up the steps and suddenly a hand reached over the edge of the steps from the black pit, and pulled him over the edge. Mersery yelled, and grabbed the edge of the steps. He held on as tight as he could, and he felt the hand let go of him, and he quickly pulled himself up. He looked down into the bottomless pit, and saw a pair of red eyes looking up at him. He ran out of the cave, and he saw something that surprised him. It was a massive fortress, with the moon glareing off of the smooth walls of the fortress. There was a long bridge, and it led to a little circular island in the middle of a lake, and another bridge extended from the little stone island, and into the fortress.

He looked behind him back in the cave, and notheing was there. Suddenly, another pain went through his head, and he knelt down and screamed in pain. He shut his eyes and clenched his teeth. Each of these strange headaches got worse and worse with each one, and he did not know where they were comeing from.

The headache finally went away, and he stood up and opened his eyes, and he looked in front of him, he saw a shadow rise in front of him, and he turned around, and swung his arm in a closed fist at the dark being. He did not really think a simple punch would do anything, but in a desperate time like this, he was willing to try anything.

Unfortunately, the punch was a meaningless gesture, and the Blood Summoner blocked it, and grasped his neck, and lifted him from the ground. He then threw Mersery to the ground and stabbed him in the chest with a dagger, going all the way through him and into the ground, pinning him there.

The Blood Summoner looked puzzeled, as if he were curiouse as to what was happening outside the dream, as there seemed to be interference in the nightmare. But before he thought about it to much, he blasted Mersery with a strong blast of constant electricity. The continuouse blast was so incredibley painful, that Mersery could not even yell, and he felt as though he would just explode if nothing happened fast.

Finally, Serrakaan stoped the electrical barrage, and looked at Mersery's smokeing body. He was badly burned. Serrakaan, finally wanting to inflict the most pain, activated the power of his mask. Mersery began to bleed excessively, and it was comeing from his mouth, eyes, and ears. He began to choke on his own blood, and the pain was so bad, that he wished he was dead.

Makuta Serrakaan finally ended his deadly barage on Mersery, and saw that the Mersion, was almost dead, and now he was going to end him. He slowly drew his long sword, and raised it above Mersery's head. He was about to lower the blade to cut off Mersery's head, when suddenly Mersery felt another one of those headaches comeing on. It was so painful, and he felt such pain that he thought Serrakaan had split his head open. After the headache was over, suddenly, everything went black, and there was no pain, no death, no Makuta. The dream was over, the surgeons were successful!

A few hours after the dream had ended.

Mersery woke up in his quarters. He looked around, and saw Irostenese sitting across from him in a chair. He got up and yelled.

"It worked! I can't believe it!!"

Irostenese smiled and said.

"Yes it did. We were very worried that you would never wake up. You had very similar reactions as you had the night before, such as vomiting, screaming, and shakeing, but you came through, my dear friend."

(Mersery) "What happened? During the dream I had incredible headaches, and they were so awful, that I just nearly killed myself, as much good it would do in the nightmare."

(Irostenese) "The headaches were most likely the times we were activating the electrodes in your brain. I am surprised that you are still alive after that. We had to electrocute you four times, when normally, someone would die just after three electric shocks. But you came through. You are alot tougher than Serrakaan gave you credit."

(Mersery) "In a way, the torture was alot worse than the last. He stabbed my body to the ground, Electrocuted me, and then he used his powers of blood to make me bleed out. The pain was, excruciateing. He was about to behead me, but I was taken from the dream right before he could. By the way, how did you know which lobe to zapp to get me out of the dream?"

(Irostenese) "We had already activated three electrodes. Nothing was working, and you were showing signs of extreme pain. Then that made me think. Pain is your nerves sending signals to the brain that say, I am hurt, or I have been injured or comprimised. I then realized, in order to have pain like such you described in the nightmare, Serrakaan must be activateing those particualar nerves in your system, so you feel pain, that is not there. So I found the lobe with the most nerve signals reporting to it, and that is the one I electrocuted. As it turns out, my theory was correct, and you came out of it with flying colors, no brain damage, or anything expected."

(Mersery) "Irostenese, I have a question for you. Do you think that it was cowerdley of me to run from him. Not just in the nightmares, but in real life as well. On Destral, I escaped, yet by definition I was running from him. Do you think I am a cowerd?"

(Irostenese) "Absolutely not! Think about what you just said, "On Destral, I escaped." Do you know how few people can actually say something like that? What's more, when Helryx came to you with the mission to go to Destral, you accepted without restraint. You did not ask anybody to go with you, you did not take a teleporter to escape with, and you did not question anything about the mission. You went to possibly the most secure location in this world, where just takeing a wrong step could get you killed. You went into the center of their operation, stole some valueable information, and fought not just one, but three Makuta, and you did not back down from any one of those fights. And in all of that, the Makuta had the uper hand the whole time. Did you know that just one Makuta has forty powers, and maybe more? You took on three of them, and you were wounded each and every time. Now what does that say about you?"

(Mersery) "Thank you for your confidence, but when Serrakaan came after me, I was indeed afraid, in both the dream, and in reality. I ran from him in the dream. I did not stand up to him, I ran."

(Irostenese) "In the dream, you ran, but who would not have. Every element was stacked against you. You had not weapons, no knowledge of where you were, and you had no powers. It would have been foolish to try and fight. But we both know that you could stand up to Serrakaan, you did it twice in real life, and just because in a dream, where you were as powerless as a matoran, and you did not face him, you think you are a cowerd. Absolutely not!"

(Mersery)"But in real life, I was afriad of him. I was horrified when I fought him."

(Irostenese) "So was I. You have to understand, you were not afraid of Serrakaan out of natural instinct, or out of cowerdace. You were afraid of him because he has the power to imbead fear into you, to put it into you without you even knowing. If he did not have that power over beings, you and I would not fear. You are possibley the most brave person I know after what you have gone through in the past few days, and you have every reason to take pride in that."

Mersery smiled at this, as this gave him comfort. He bumped fists with Irostenese, as if they were like Toa, and he rose and they both left his quarters. As he walked the halls of Daxia, he was greeted and congratulated by many of his aquaintances. Helryx was happy to see him, and even Botar was.

He had walked away from this mission, and these past few days, with not only comfort, but reasurance in himself. He also walked away with a new friend. Despite the past few days being somewhat horrible, he could not deny, that should he have the option to never do it again, he would refuse, and take the journey once more, for he walked away with more than he could have bargained for. He never new that someday, he would actually be able to say, that he faced three of the most powerful spieces in the world, and walked away scott free. It was not only a boost to his reputation, but also to his self esteem. As he looked out at the horizon, he could only think of how the lessons he learned were valueable, and the experience was also just as valueable. He would never forget these days, and he would never forget, the kindness of a stranger.

On a remote island, at an excavation sight in the mountains.

Zorron and his master walked up a path of stairs, and they got to a cavern carved into the mountain. They walked down the stairways, passing alot of workers. After a few moments of walking they got to the end of the passageway, and saw what was discovered. There was a hole in the wall, surrounded by strange glyphs and symbols. The hole had a strange shape to it, and Zorron rubbed around it with his hand.

(Zorron) "What is this?"

(Aluksonnion) "It is the key to our rise back to supremecy."

Aluksonnion pulled out a dagger, that matched the exact shape of the hole in the rock in front of them.

(Aluksonnion) "This had been passed down for many decades by those who were leaderso of the Patrons of the Dark, and now I fanally know why."

He stabbed the dagger into the rock, and turned it clockwise, pushed it in, turned it counter clockwise, and pushed it in futher. When he did this, he saw a stone door open at the wall to his left. He withdrew tha dagger, and and went through the newly opened door. When he entered, it closed behind him, and he was alone in the room. He walked toward a stone pillar stcking out of the floor, and at the top of it, was a hole that matched the dimensions of the dagger. He stabbed the dagger into the hole, and turned it. Suddenly, the floor he was standing on, quickley lowered as if it were an elevator. It lowered for about ten seconds, and after tens seconds, it stoped, and the four walls surrounding the room he was in, lowered into the ground. Around him was a large room, with alot of water flowing around inside. The walls were glowing a bright blue, and so were the ancient glyphs in the walls. In the far wall, a stone door opened, and revealed a stairway. He walked up to it, and walked up the steps, with a small stream of water running down them. As he got to the top of the stairway. He looked into the room that he had accessed. It had a strait path, and on either side of the stone path, was a large pool of water, and in each pool, were Takea sharks swimming inside. The pools were deep, and dark, and the sharks looked hungry. This was a little uncomfortable, yet in front of him, down the path, another pillar rose in the floor. He walked down the path, being overly careful to stay right in the middle, and not be close to either of the pools with the Takea sharks. Once again, he stabbed the dagger into the hole that was inside the pillar, and he turned it. Suddenly, stairs rose in front of him, and the lead to another door, and the door opened. He walked up the stairs, and into the next room. Finally, set in the hands of a statue, of the last leader of the Patrons of the Dark, was a golden staff. It glowed in radience, and in power. He walked over to it, still carful to stay away from two more pools on either side of the path. He took the staf into his hand, and powers soard through him. His armor turned gold, and yellow, and it glowed with the staff.

"At last. The power that held the Hand of Artakah in despair, the power that conquered armies in a single gesture, the power that gave our organization supremecy, is in the palm of my hand. No one will ever stand against us again, when I find the other artifact, I will have ultimate power. And with it, I will destroy the Brotherhood of Makuta, and any others that get in my way. HA HA HA HA HA!!!!!!!"

And with this new found power in his hand, the Patrons of the Dark, were once again a powerful threat, one that would not be easy to destroy once again, and one that would lead to much chaose, and much evil, in the near future. For very few beings could stand against the powers of the artifacts, and only one of the beings who had destroyed the Patrons the last time, was still alive. For the name of the being who defeated the first grand master, the one who destroyed their armies, the one who sent their organization into near extinction, was Irostenese, and Aluksonnion looked forward to ending him.

After he had thought this through, he decided to go and find out how to get out of the chamber. He was going to retrace his steps, when a bridge in one of the pools suddenly errupted from the floor of it. It formed a sufficient bridge, and another opening in the wall across it was revealed. He walked over to it, and into the newest chamber, which turned out to be a halway, illuminated by the glowing hyroglyphics on the walls. As he walked down the hallway, he saw a door, that was especially bright from the glyphs on it. It had a hole in it, once again, shaped like the dagger. He pushed the dagger in, turned it, and then pulled it out. The door opened, and led into a large round room. He walked in, and suddenly, the room came alive with blue light glowing from all of the glyphs and cracks on the walls. He began to read them, and realized he had found a map to the next, and final artifact! Once he had the artifact, he would be able to assault entire islands alone with the power they would grant. It gave specific instructions as to where to find the next artifact, and it said that now, a massive city was built over the underground temple, but that an entrance still remained at the great temple surrounded by water. Aluksonnion had to think for a minute, but he then determined the exact location that the glyphs were referring to. It had to be in the great temple in Ga Metru of Metru Nui!

The rest of the instructions indicated, that only on a moonlit sky, would the entrence be revealed in the dead of night, and the light would shine, upon it's keyhole. He realized that Moonlit sky most likely meant an night of the full moon. He then read more about the key, and it was the dagger he held. He then tried to find where in the temple was he to look. He read on, but it said nothing more. He then re-read the paragraph, and it said, at the great temple, not in it. This may be a problem, if he had to look all around the great temple to find it, but he new that the results were far to worth it. He would find out the date of the next night of the full moon, and then, he would be takeing a trip to Metru Nui. After he read this, he want through a dorrway in the other side of the room. He walked down another long hallway and the door behind him shut. At the end of the hallway he went into a very small room, that was about the size of a well in perimeter. He walked in, and saw another place to thrust the dagger. He did so, and the opening behind him closed, and he felt the floor being proppelled upward. After about thirteen seconds of being proppelled upward, the floor stopped, and the same door opened. He walked into another cave, and he walked through it until it lead out on a presepice outside. He could see alot of the island from this vantage point, and at that momment, he decided that this temple, or vault rather, should be kept secret. After a little journey, he reached his servants, and Zorron. They all looked very gladly upon the staff that he held. It was the fruit of their labor for three months of excavation, and it was well worth it.

After getting settled in the palace at the beach, he decided to have another built, right in front of the entrance to the vault. He would make the designs to the throne room, where he would keep hidden the entrance to the vault, and the staff.

Not too long after these arrangements were made, Zorron approached him, and in his ignorance, asked a few ingnorant questions.

"So when would you like to take Metru Nui over, and see to it that the next vault is found. I will draw my soldiers from the Southern Continent, and that alone should be enough to take Ga Metru. And now that you have the staff, we could possibley take over the colesium, and the Toa guarding it would have to allow our takeover, after all, what can stop us now that we have the staff?"

Aluksonnion gave a surprised look at Zorron for suggesting that, and so he responded.

"I am not sure what you mean by assault. I will by no means assault the Matoran, or the Toa. That is something I am not willing to do. All I want is the artifact. All we have to do, is go to Ga Metru, wait for the full moon, and look for the entrance to the vault. I only plan to take a few of my soldiers with me, and not an army. This is not a full blown attack, it is rather a stealth operation."

(Zorron) "Than what use is the staff, and the sword, if we are not going to use them to seize power?"

(Aluksonnion) "I have seen the error in the ways of my ancestors. They would use the artifacts to rule in power and might. But I do not seek power, or might, only vengence. When I have killed Irostenese, I will have no more real use for the staff. We will make this island our base, and we will live here, and be our own organization. By no means are we going to enslave others to do our bidding. With the artifacts, I can have all I want, and all I want, is to rule this organization, and perhapse ally ourselves with the Makuta. We can help prevent chaos that could occur in this world, and not be the cause of it. Imagine our potential for all the good that we could accomplish? But most of all, I seek to replace the one organization that saw themselves as our betters, our superiors. This is my ultimate goal, and I believe it is something we can accomplish."

Zorron smiled, and gave a bow of respect, and left the room. He pretended to like the idea, and support it, but it was far from what he was expecting. He had hoped that the Patrons of the Dark would pick up where they left off, and retake the power they had left behind, and destroy anyone who got in there way. But instead, he will take the organization in the completely opposite direction. To him, it was almost sack religious to the organization. This organization had fought for control, power, and domination for so long, only to be destroyed. Zorron had hoped that they would make a powerful, and noticeable come back from extinction. That they would emediately retake what was rightfully theirs. But instead, they would fight alongside others, and be considered equals with the Makuta? Unbelievable. He wanted to be greater than that, he wanted to be above anyone who would have the power to oppose them. The Toa, Makuta, and Skakdi would never allow them to gain dominance by a simple request. If they truely wanted to become a powerful organization, they needed to remove the competition, by killing every last one of the three classes. The most difficult would be the Makuta, yet it would have to be done this way.

Zorron realized these thoughts would never come to fruition, for Aluksonnion was set in his ways. He would have to be the Grand Master of the organization in order to start such a rebellion. Zorron pondered these last thoughts. What would it take for him to become their leader? What might de-throne the current leader, in order to take his place? After Zorron thought it through, he realized the only possible way to get a powerful leader like Aluksonnion to be taken from leadership, was death. After that went through his mind, he realized that it had to be done, for the reputation of the organization was at stake. After Aluksonnion had found the final artifact, he would kill him, and take the staff for his own, and force his leadership upon the organization. And those who refused to accept him, would be killed.

Chapter 9 ~ Intervention.[]

Makuta Serrakaan sat in a stone chair, deep in the catacombs under Destral. His antisocial behavior provoked him to keep his resting place hidden, and farther away from his brothers. And so, he ventured into the catacombs under Destral, and formed almost a city of tunnels underneath the fortress. They are a complete maze to those who are unaware of exactly where they are going, and so the Makuta do not go down there, and only use mental summons to request Serrakaan's presence, rather than going down there to look for him. Somewhere in the maze of tunnels are Serrakaan's quarters, and to be truthful, they are more than just quarters. His laboratory, personal library, armory, training room, and resting place, along with numurose other rooms and chambers are located down there. It is also known that he keeps something down there. A Rahi perhapse. All that is known about it is that he created it, and it is his favorite of his creations. Despite this, it has never been seen before, and most likely won't be seen as long as Serrakaan wishes it so.

As he sat in the chair, all he could think about was the beast that he had faced the day before. Despite the fact that it did not seem like it, he was using a substantial ammount of power against it. He was using his mask the whole time they were embattled, and it had little, to no effect on the beast. This lead Serrakaan to believe that the beast was not of this particular universe, and that it must have come from elswhere.

The other subject of his thoughts was Mersery. How was it that he was able to inturrupt his effect on the Mersions mind. It would normally be impossible, and the Makuta wanted the Mersion to pay for his constant prattleing when he was on Destral. Serrakaan was going to pursue the line of inquirey personally, as to who hired him, and why. Serrakaan knew what it was that he stole, and just by the fact that it was information on him was enough to agitate him.

Serrakaan did not like the prophesy about him floating around somewhere for any to read, and try to comprehend. He knew everything about that tablet, includeing who they said may kill him, but he refused to believe that this would happen. His goals were far to great to be stopped by anyone, and despite the fact that many years had gone by since this prophesy was made, it was who made the prophesy that made Serrakaan uncomforted.

Serrakaan soon left these thoughts in the back of his mind, and left the room he was in. He walked down several halways. and though several doorways, until he reached a prision cell, and inside of it, was a helpless victem of one of his missions. The being screamed when Serrakaan came into the cell, and he cringed at the sight of him. Serrakaan grabbed him by the back of the neck and carried him to another room in the fortress. It was a massive room, and the only light that came in was the light from the dorrway.

Serrakaan inserted his claws into the beings neck, causing an unsafe and painful blood flow. He then threw the being to the floor a about twenty yards in front of him. The being was immobilised by restraints around his wrists, and he could not stand, as Serrakaan had cut his legs so badly, that the pain was unbearable if he tried to stand. Despite the holes in the sides of his neck, and the cuts on his legs, he was still alive. He was wondering what the Blood Summoner was doing with him for a second, but a noise across the room cleared the mystery. He looked toward the noise, and saw large, glowing white eyes.

Serrakaan turned and left the room, and he heard the noise of the being screaming, and the sound of ripping flesh, and blood spatter. He walked back to his seat, and sat there. Right after he sat however, he received a mental summons from Miserix. He apparently had another mission. This was a good thing, for Serrakaan had just run out of food for his pet, and it was always hungry.

He walked though a few hallways that were smoothley carved into the walls. He soon entered a large room with a large amount of water leaking inside from the ocean. It formed a large pool, and a stream that went out through the quarters. At the far end of that room was a, that was recently massive door. It had many glyphs on it, and it was completley made of stone. Serrakaan walked over to it, and placed his hand in the center of it. Suddenly the glyphs lit up with a a bright blue light. He then removed his hand, and then the door raised to open an archway. He walked though, and the door shut behind him. The back of the door looked like the wall of the cave he had just entered. He was now in a maze of darkened, ragged, hard rock tunnels, that looked like the inside of a cavern or a cave. He took many twists and turns. He walked through many places, and even through a few hidden passages. Finally he exited into a large room, and in the center of that room was a large pool of energized protodermis. He was now directly below the throne room. He walked up a winding stairway, and he then pulled a lever at the top od the steps, and it opened a door into the main fortress. He passed a few familiar Makuta, like Icarax and Antroz. He soon entered the throne room and stood before Miserix.

Miserix looked at him for a moment, and then began to speak.

"I have an assignment for you. There is a situation on the Northern Continent. You see, I only heard yesterday that an unknown being, has occupied a place in the mountains. It was not a very serious matter at first, until several Matoran turned up dead after they went to investigate the disturbance. Apparently, someone built a fortress there, and has enstilled a security force that kills any trespassers that come within a mile of the fortress. I have decided that this tyrany must end. Go there, wipe them out, and raise the fortress to the ground. Handle it tonight. Oh, and I want no witnesses. Kill any who spot you. Only spare the Matoran, and the Toa."

Serrakaan nodded, and left. He walked outside, the sun had just gone down, and so it was safe. He suddenly dissappeard in an explosion of smoke, as he teleported to the Northern Continent.

On the Northern Continent, outside of a Matoran Settlement in the Mountains.

The sun had just gone down, and it was snowing again. The mountains looked like rocky white sheets that spread as far as the eye could see. Most of the Matoran that lived in this village were Ko-Matoran, and they appreciated their privacy. A few weeks ago, a fortress was suddenly built over night, not two miles from their settlement. The Turaga of the village sent a few matoran up there to investigate, and the next night, they returned, but not in one peice. They were brutally mutilated, gouges of armor and flesh were carved out of their bodies, and so were their eyes. It was such a shock, that the Matoran were planning to move down the mountain, even if they had to mix with the Ta-Matoran. And to even make things stranger, another visitor appeared the night before, claiming to be a Toa, and a Toa of Sunlight at that. The Matoran found this hard to believe, as there had never been any reports or legends of any Toa of this element before. But after a few demonstrations that amazed the Matoran, they made room for him to stay with them for a while. Now that they had a Toa with them, they might be able to properly investigate this new disturbance. And the Toa readily aggreed, and planned to go with a Matoran, and fight against this new darkened threat. His name, was Ra.

Inside the Turaga's hut, they met to discuss their new mission.

(Ulnar) "I am very appreaciative of this gesture by you two. You show great bravery by doing this for our village. Now here is your task. Go to the fortress, and find a way in. If you meet resistance, avoid deadly force, and aim to subdue. Find out who killed our friends, and make sure to capture him. He is of high priority. Once we have him, we can ship him down to Alleniss. They will make sure he gets judgement down there, so he will never harm an innocent again."

(Ra) "Sir, it is my belief that as a Toa, unity is one of my most valued traits. Yet if I have to go to the fortress, would it not be safer if I go inside alone? The last thing that I want is my newest friends to be killed."

The Matoran that stood next to him stamped his foot, and had a stern look on his face.

(Kollus) "Absolutely not! I will not stand idle while you fight for our village!"

(Ulnar) "Kollus, I know you are angry at the loss of your friends, but vengence will not help us. With Toa Ra at your side, we have a large chance of winning, and with Kollus at yours Ra, you have a fellow warrior. However, I hold both of you reponsible for the other. If one of you gets hurt, I want you to head back here as quickly as you can. Do not attempt to accomplish this by yourself! Either of you. I do not want to have to put either of you to rest. Just go to together, and do what must be done. May Mata Nui be with you the entire time, and may his hand direct you to victory!"

After this encouraging speach, they both departed for a mountain pass that would lead to the fortress. The adventure was a little omminous, as they had a bad feeling as to what they would find there. They had hopes that perhapse the person there, may be someone they could take together, or that this person would surrender. Unfortuneately, they were entirely wrong in either case.

Inside the Fortress in the Mountains.

The fortress was dark, and quiet. Centuries were walking around from post to post, makeing sure that any intruder would be found and killed. These soldiers were called shadow Toa. This is a very uncommon kind of being, and unnatural. These Toa used to form an effective team, all of different elements, until, He found them. Very recently, a new force had come into the Matoran universe. He was self serving, and cared for no ones well being. In fact, he would have most likely destroyed most of this world, if he had not seen its potential as a secret base. A place where he could plan in peace, without any interference, or any violent inturruptions.

Several extremely powerful beings were looking for him, and they had found him on several occasions. It was not that they scared him at all, he just wanted to find a place where he could plan his next move without any disturbances. He had traveled to many places, and even different worlds, until he had found this one. It was perfect. A world inside a world. Or in more real terms, a robot inside a world. This made for the perfect secret base. No one would look for him there, and he would be there for years undisturbed, and unhindered, or so he thought. It turns out that the place he had chosen for his fortress was near some of the foolish inhabitants of this world. They sent some scouts to greet him, or more likely remove him. This enraged him, as it seemed that no matter where he went, he would encounter resistence. And so, he killed them, and sent back their bodies. After this, he found a Toa team, and offered them a place as his security force. He decided that perhapse they would serve him as a small resistence force against the inhabitants. So he corrupted them with shadow, and with fear. He demonstrated that should they think betrayal, he would kill them. So far, they had been effective, but not to a great extent. They were still thinking about getting away, so they still needed encouragment to do their jobs, and so he brutally murdered a few Matoran in front of them, just to prove a point. After this, they never left their posts, and became as effective as robots.

Since then, he had finally been able to study, and plan his next move. He had gone undisturbed for several days, and he was in the process of completeing a plan that would lead him back to supremecy. Unfortuneately, he was not aware that his actions warranted the attention of the Brotherhood of Makuta. He was not at all afraid of them, and he did not see them as a threat. But he did not know of their primal assassin, and what he was capable of. But tonight he would find out.

In the Courtyard of His Fortress.

The Toa guardians walked from place to place, not bothering to speak, or show any sign of emotion. Their new master had broken their spirits, and shown them that hope was irrelevant in their situation. The had assumed that perhapse one day he would free them, but they tried not to think of it, for he would know. There were ten of them, and they used to all be close friends, but now were just coleagues.

Their night, as the one before, was quite uneventfull. There was really no need of any guards, but the had to do their jobs for fear of death. They felt no emotion, they walked as if they did not care about anything accept the next step they would take. They however were not only watching their posts, but eachother. If one of them went missing, they would all face the wrath of their master. Everything seemed normal, until there was a sudden change in the atmosphere. I felt cold, very cold. They could feel the chill go down their backs, but it was not very cold. They also suddenly started to avoid the darker parts of the courtyard. Howevever, one of them, out of a fearful curriosity, went into a darkened part of the courtyard. One of the guards watched him out of a little surprise that he had the guts to go in a dark place. He could not see him in the darkened corner, but he would come out soon, so as to move to the next post. He watched and waited, and after thirty seconds, he got a little worried. Thirty seconds turned to a minute, and a minute turned to two. He looked down at the floor, and out of the darkness, a red substance slowly started to stream. He nearly jumped in surprise when he saw this. He ran and got a torch, and went to the darkened corner. When he illuminated it, he saw something shocked him. Blood was everywhere! It was splattered all over the wall, and the floor. But when he looked for the body, it was not there. He just stared down at all of the blood. No being could survive so much blood loss. In his stare he did not notice that the guard on the wall, had just been pulled over the side by a shadowy figure.

He called to his friends, and the came running. They discussed what they should do. It may have been their new master who did it, but why would he have? They may go tell their master about what happened, but without a body, he may not believe them. And even if he did, it would amuse him, and not worry him. And they were too afraid of him to even bother telling him.

They soon changed their minds however, when they saw one of their comrades heads get launched over the side of the wall. They did their best not to scream at the sight of it, but they were still afraid of what the master would do if they tried to inform him. However they soon came to the conclusion that it is something they needed to do. so they fairly chose who would go to the master, and after a bitter goodbye, he went through the gate into the fortress to speak with him. He shut the dorr behind them and left his friends behind.

There were seven of them out there, and they were prepared to kill anything that they saw. They all had spears, in which they could direct their element. They walked away from eachother, three of them went on top of the wall, three more went outside the gate, and into the snowey climate around the fortress. And the last one stayed in the middle of the courtyard, and waited for anything to happen. The three that went on top of the wall formed a secure formation. One in front, one in the middle that looked out for the left and right side, and one that tailed them from behind and looked out for their rear. They were walking slowly, and then suddenly the one in the middle looked over the edge of the wall. What he saw when he looked over the edge almost made him vomit. He saw one of his comrades in a bloody mess on the ground. He was completely torn apart, and the snow all around him was red. They became even more alerted than ever. They were almost even twitchy.

One the ground outside the fortress, they walked down the East side of the fortress, in the exact formation of the first group. They were looking in several different directions, but no one bothered to look up. One of them felt a drop of snow hit their head. It surprised him, but he wiped it off. However when he looked at his hand. It was covered in blood. He looked up and saw that blood was dripping down the wall, and it looked fresh. He had his friends toss him up useing the mask of telekenesis, and when he landed on the wall, he landed in a pool of blood. He yelped when he saw it, but he nearly fell off of the wall when he saw his friend's chest torn out, and his body covered in blood.

He looked at te body, and saw no marks from a blade or anything. It was as if his chest exploded outward. Then he remembered that his friends were in a group of three, and so where were the others! He looked around, turning in a quick circle, but there was no sign of them. He suddenly heard his friends yell for him to come back down. He leapt out over the wall to see what was needed.

His friends saw him leap out, and then they saw a shadowey hand reach out behind him, and grab his neck. The hand pulled him back inside the wall, and they head him scream, and heard the sound of flesh ripping, and something splattering on the floor. They both ran as fast as they could down the wall, trying to get as far away as possible, when they stumbled upon two bodies, all covered in blood, and one of them with his arm ripped off. They screamed in fear and ran down the path that lead to the Matoran village. They did not know what was going on, but they did not want to wait and find out.

As they were running down however, they heard a noise ahead of them. They stopped and raised their weapons with a death grip. Suddnely a Matoran leapt out of the snow and onto the backs of one of them. And then a Toa leapt from behind a tree and kicked the other. The shadow Toa threw the Matoran off of him, and into the Toa. Both of the Shadow Toa got up and looked at their assailants.

(Shadow Toa) "I can't believe that a Toa and Matoran could cause so much trouble, but I think that it is time to return the favor."

After this was said, both shadow Toa attcked. They seemed to ignore Kollus, and both headed strait for the strange Toa. The both quickly spun their spears in the Toa's direction, but the Toa was very fast, and was able to dodge, and deflect every single attack. Kollus snuck behind one of them, and stabbed him in the back of the leg. The shadow Toa screamed in pain, and whirled around and smacked the Matoran with the back of his hand. Kollus fell to the ground, but rolled just in time to avoid a stabb from the shadow Toa's spear. He leapt back, as his knife was still imbeaded in the shadow Toa's leg. The Toa limped after the Matoran, and tried again to stabb him. But for a Matoran, Kollus was very quick, and avoided the strikes. They soon were in a snowey cannyon, small and rather difficult to manuver in. The shadow Toa kept getting his spear caught on the walls, and so he threw it at the Matoran, who barely dodged the attack, bareing only a scratch from the spear tip.

The shadow Toa then pulled out the knife from his leg, and a sput of blood came with it. He threw it at the Matoran, followed by a quick shadow blast. The Matoran dodged the knife in the nick of time, but his proximity to the shadow blast was very close. When the shadow blast hit the wall next to the Matoran, it knocked him to the floor. This wounded the Matoran's back, and made him much less agile than before. The shadow Toa picked him up by the throat, and shoved him into the wall. He squeezed the Matoran's throat with little effort, and it began to suffocate him. The Matoran scanned the area with his eyes to find a hideing place. He looked about forty feet from where they were standing, and saw the mouth of a large cave.

As soon as he saw this, he jammed his thumb into the eye of the shadow Toa, and needless to say, it let go of him. He fell to the ground with a roll, and made a dash for the cave. As soon as he got into the cave, he could not help but notice how could it was inside there. A sudden fear hit him, as if he really did not want to be in the dark alone. But before he could change his mind, the shadow Toa was limping over to him. He turned around and climbed up a wall, and over a ledge in the cave, so he had a little hight on the shadow Toa, and then he hid behind a rock, and made sure to look out for him.

The shadow Toa walked inside, holding his eye with one hand, and bearing the Matoran's knife in the other. He looked around, and obviousley could not pinn down Kollus's location, and so he tried to coax him out.

(Shadow Toa) "I am surprised at your skill Matoran. Many matoran I have seen were far more helpless. You seem like a brave one, and one who would like to be considered a hero. But that lust will be gone as soon as I have killed your Toa friend. Yes. Your frind may be a Toa, but he cannot stand up to two of us. I will find him, and then I will cut him limb from limb. I will then take his head, and steak it outside your village, as a reminder of your failure."

The shadow Toa had hoped that his threats would have provoked the Matoran to attack, but they did not. Kollus knew that these threats were either idle, or exaggerated, and so he did not move. The shadow Toa then decided that threats would not coax him, so he would shed some "Light" one the situation.

(Shadow Toa) "You know, since haveing recently obtained powers over shadow, I have an added bonus here. You my think that darkness hides you, but all of this darkness, this shield you would use against me, is under my control. Not only do I have the ability to cast shadow, I have the ability to withdraw it as well. When I do, I will find you, and I will rip your flesh like a leaf."

Kollus saw that this was not an idle threat, as the Toa soon began to retract the shadow of the entire cave. The moonlight from the entrance swarmed inside the cave, and his position was revealed! The shadow Toa smiled, and began to slowly walk toward him. Kollus would have run away, but what he saw standing behind the shadow Toa froze him. It was a tall, black, shadow, that mingled so perfectly well with the surrounding darkness, he would never have been able to tell that it was there until the darkness from the room was drained.

The Black Shadow grabbed the shadow Toa by the back of the neck, and with the Toa's concentration shattered, darkness quickly filled the room again. The Toa screamed in agony and fear, and the next sound that was heard chilled Kollus to the bone. It was the sound of ripping flesh, and splattering blood. Kollus was so completely taken by panic, that he ran as fast as his legs would carry him to the mouth of the cave. He nearly slipped in some liquide, but he did not have time to see what it was until he got out into the snow and saw that he was leaving behind red footprints.

As soon as he got out of the cave, he screamed for his Toa friend.


However, as soon as he did so, he fell to the ground, unconsciouse, and unaware, and worst of all, unprotected.

While all of this had transpired, Ra was fighting against the other shadow Toa, and he was doing quite well. Neither Toa had landed a sufficient hit on the other, and they were both demonstateing excellent combat ability. Ra had been well ahead of the shadow Toa for most of the fight, as he was alot more agile, and his element was quite the opposite of the Toa he was fighting.

Ra to some degree however, had the disadvantage. The shadow Toa was wielding a spear, and Ra only had his sword. The shadow Toa had twice as much reach, and Ra was mostly leaping around him and blocking. The shadow Toa was bigginning to catch on to Ra's evasive manuvers, and found a loophole in his technique. He jabbed his spear at Ra's feet, forceing Ra to leap over his head, and land behind him. Unfortuneately, the shadow Toa had anticipated this, and blast a bolt of shadow right where Ra was about to land. Instead of a neat landing on his feet, Ra lost balance and rolled down the hill and nearly off the cliff. He jammed his sword into the ice on the side of the cliff. He pulled himself up, but was met with the end of the shadow Toa's spear.

The shadow Toa paused, to savor his victory, and raised his spear for the kill. Ra had one last opportunity to survive, and so he took it. He blasted huge blast of sunlight right at the shadow Toa's face. The shadow Toa dropped his spear and screamed in agony. He fell to his knees and gripped his eyes in pain. Ra climbed the cliff, and held his sword at the shadow Toa's collar.

(Ra) "Surrender, and this will go no further, this is you last chance."

The shadow Toa looked up at Ra. There was no way he could get away from this one, and he knew that if he surrendered, he would be killed by his new master. He was frantically looking for a way to escape such a punishment, and he then found it.

(Shadow Toa) "You don't understand. He will torment me if I surrender."

(Ra) "Who is he that he could cause you to have so much fear? I can help you."

(Shadow Toa) "No. No one can help me. He is to powerful. You cannot defeat him."

(Ra) "We can work together. I can help you stop him."

(Shadow Toa) "He will kill you. There is only one way out. Forgive me."

The shadow Toa grabbed Ra's sword and stabbed himself in the throat with it. Ra yelled for him to stop, but it was too late. The shadow Toa fell dead, with Ra's blade inside his neck. Ra felt as though it was unbelievable that something so horrible happened, and he did not prevent it.

He knelt beside the former Toa, and took his blade out of his neck. The sight of his blood nearly made him vomit, as it was all over his own blade. He felt as though he did not deserve to be a Toa, after allowing something like this to happen. However, being a Toa was not entireley possible for him, as he was not actually a Toa at all, but another type of being called a Guardian. But when he introduced himself to the Matoran of the nearby village, they imediately took him for a Toa. So, rather than go through a thorough explanation as to what he was, he decided to leave it at that. However, he still felt a connection to other Toa, and felt them like brothers and sisters when they were around. Just by the fact that a darker brother killed himself with his blade, made Ra feel like a traitor to them.

But he had little time to ponder these thoughts when he heard Kollus scream his name from somewhere among snowey hills. The cry wailed from the hills, and it was extremely desperate in sound. He grabbed his sword and ran up the hill and into a snowey cannyon. He walked through it carfully, trying to find his friend. He finally saw his friend laying face first in the snow, right in front of the mouth of a cave. He lifted up his friend, and looked at his heartlight. He was unconsciouse, and not dead. This gave him some comfort, but not much. He looked into the cave and saw something move. He slowley set down his friend, and walked toward the cave. He raised his hand and filled the cave with sunlight. He looked around, and to his shock, he saw a dead body, with the jaw of the victem ripped clean off.

He looked down, and realized that he had stepped in a large pool of blood, and that it was smeared all over the wall. This made him jump a little, and as he looked around, he saw bloody footprints, which he suspected were Kollus's. He could not believe Kollus to be capable of such a deed, and he was going to need a good explanation for this.

As he looked around the room, he could not see anything else suspicious. No other shadow Toa, no Rahi, nothing. All he saw was a mutilated corpse, and a bloody mess left behind. After his examination of the cave he noticed that Kollus began to wake up. He walked over too him to see if he was ok.

(Ra) "Kollus! What happened? What did you do to that Toa?!"

(Kollus) "I guess I must have passed out. How long have I been unconsciouse?"

(Ra) "I don't know. Answer my question Kollus! What did you do to that Toa? I thought we agreed that we would not take a life. What happened?"

(Kollus) "I did not do that! I swear! I was hideing when someone grabbed him, and then it all went black. I ran as fast as I could to get away, but I passed out."

(Ra) "What grabbed him?"

(Kollus) "I don't know, but it was big."

(Ra) "Well that is helpful."

(Kollus) "I am sorry. I only saw him for like a second and that was it."

(Ra) "Well where did it go?"

(Kollus) "I don't know. I did not see where it went. I passed out remember. That was like the third time I told you that. Pay attention will ya. By the way, what happened to your bad guy. Did you tie him up, upside down, over a cliff?"

(Ra) "Not exactly. He killed himself for fear of his recent master. I have not ever seen someone so scared of another being. He was so scared, that he would rather die than rebel against him. I believe he is the one responsible for the murder of the Matoran, so I think that I will have to deal with him before something else bad happens."

(Kollus) "Wait, what do you mean by, "I will have to deal with him." I thought we were a team, for at least tonight."

(Ra) "If this person is as strong as he is described to be, than I don't want you to be harmed by him. I will handle him alone."

(Kollus) "If this person actually beat a whole team of Toa single handed,what makes you think that you, can beat him by yourself. If a whole team of Toa could not beat him, one Toa won't be enough. You need backup. Isn't that a part of your code? Unity?"

Ra was a little nervouse about this, as it actually is not apart of his code at all, and to be honest, he felt better working alone. He also did not want to risk the life of another Matoran, as he already felt responsible for one death tonight.

(Ra) "Listen Kollus. You may be right, but I will not risk your life over this. You need to head back to the village and warn Turaga Ulnar of the danger. He may be able to get into contact with some other Toa. In the mean time, I will scout the place out, and try to find this guy."

(Kollus) "Fine, I will go and warn Ulnar. But you better not start a fight with this guy without me, or another Toa, or I may beat you up myself."

Ra smiled at this little gesture, and he was glad that Kollus cared so much about him that he would worry so much. However, Ra had no intention on waiting for backup.

After they said their goodbyes, Kollus started to jogg down the mountain path, until he was out of sight. Ra turned around and looked at the ominous fortress. It was very large, and it would be difficult to infiltrate if there were any more guards. And so Ra began to creep toward the fortress as quietly as possible, completely unaware of the fatal conflict he was about to get into.

Earlyer that Night.

The shadow Toa just left his friends outside. He had just seen what was most likely the grizzliest scene in his life, and there was not even a body. He was afraid for his comrades, as whatever killed his friend, was still out there. But he felt as though he was in greater danger, just by who he was about to visit. This being that had taken their freedom, was extremely powerful, and he seemed ancient just by the sound of his horrible voice. The horrible things that he was capable of made a chill go down his spine, as he recalled what he did to those Matoran.

Despite being taken in as servants, this being never told them his name, and said that if they asked, he would kill them. There was never a time when they did not fear for their lives when in his presence, and he knew, that when he spoke with his new master, that it would most likely be the last time he spoke to anyone.

He was walking up a winding stairway to get to his masters study at the top of the fortress. He was getting closer to the woodden door that would lead inside, and he felt as if his heart were in his throat. He slowley approached the door. He got within reach of it, and stopped. He remembered all of the things that brought him joy in his life, so that in his final moments, he would have something beautiful to look back upon.

He reached for the door, and turned the knob, very slowley. He opened the door and slowley strode inside. The door shut fast behind him. This made him jump a little, and he had to restrain himself from running right back through the way he came. He looked around the room. It was a large circular room, with shelves lineing the walls. Each shelf was packed with tablets, and each tablet looked well used. He looked up, and saw that there was no ceiling, but just an open roof, most likely so that his master could gaze at the stars while he studied. He looked across the room, and in a place near the shelves, was a small table, and on the table were markings in a tile like formation. There were several peices on the table in the center of one of these squares. There were five peices on one side. All of them white accept for one, for the one amongst them was black. There was another peice on the opposite side of the board, and it was also black. The shadow Toa thought it looked like a game of some sort, or something to strategize with, but he did not know what the peices meant, or their significance. In the middle of the room was a circular table. The table had some tablets spread around on it, as if the master was just reading them. It just occured to him that he had fully scanned the room, and his master was nowhere in sight. Suddenly, he heard breathing behind him. He lurched forward and turned around. It was him!

(The Master) "They say that no one knows the time of ones demise. They say that the exact minute, and second can never be found out, until when the exact moment has arrived. In your case however, I know the time, and it is soon. You have taken a grave risk comeing to me, and rather than outright ending you at this moment, I will spare you for another. For I am curious as to why you are here.

(The shadow Toa) "Master! I..I am sorry to disturb you.... I have news."

There was a pause. The Master said nothing, and so the shadow Toa got to his point.

(The shadow Toa) "There has been a murder recently, of one of ours. His body was not found, but we found alot of blood."

(The Master) "Blood. Hmm. This is interesting. Was the murder committed before or after sunset?"

(The shadow Toa) "After.... Sir!"

The Master looked very lost in thought. With just the few details he had been given, he had a feeling he knew what had happened, and who did it.

(The Master) "You sent out the others to find the disturbance. They are dead as of now."

The Toa dropped his jaw in shock. How was this possible? What happened? Did they suffer the same fate? All of these questions stormed his mind. He had almost forgotten his place, when his Master grabbed him by the throat and threw him across the room. The Toa hit the stone floor hard, and he could barely get up, for he was so weak. He looked at his master, and saw him pick up a staff. He slowly walked toward the Toa, with the staff clenched tightly in hand. The Toa shut his eyes, as his Master raised the staff over his head. But before the Master let fall his staff, he paused. He looked around, and then to the door. He then walked away from the Toa.

(The Master) "Your time is not now. Go back to your home and leave this place, before I change my mind."

The shadow Toa was in disbelief! The Master actually gave him leave to go! He was overly excited. He had so many hopeful thoughts swarm his mind, of him going back to his island, and protecting the Matoran as it always was before. He would go back and live his life as if there was no tomorrow. He would proclaim his love for his Toa sister back home, and he would live happily with her, until the end of his days. He was almost running to the door with a smile on his face. He reached the door, and for some reason he looked back at the Master. The Master was looking at him, with a grim smile on his face. Perhapse the Master was not incapable of compassion after all. The Toa opened the door, and when he did, he noticed something strange. The room that lead to the stairs was lit when he entered the room, but it was not pitch black. He peered into the room, and looked to see if he could see the steps, when suddenly, he saw a small and swift flash of light in front of him.

The Master watched, as his former servants head tumbled off of his shoulders, and bounced when it his the floor. His body stood for a second, and then it collapsed on itself, and blood poured out of his open neck. Suddenly a tall hooded being walked into the room. His gate was graceful, and the tips of his claws were covered in blood.

The Master stared into the blackness that was under the hood, for now his suspiscians were confirmed. The Blood Summoner had come to kill him. After a long pause, The Master called to the Beinf by name.

(The Master) "Serrakaan."

The Blood Summoner gave a telepathic reply, calling his latest target out by his own name. A name, that had never been heard of in this universe before. A name that instilled fear into the hearts of those who heard it.

(Serrakaan) "Shadowmaster."

Chapter 10 ~ A Cold Reunion.[]

Shadowmaster stared at the dark being who stood in front of him. He had not seen him in so many years, that he had almost forgotten him. However, the last time they met, there was quite a falling out. Shadowmaster was quite suprised when he had heard of how the guards were killed, and he instantly thought of Serrakaan. As of now, he could not even fathom why Serrakaan had come before him, or why he was still alive. However, he did also realize that perhapse the nature of this visit was not a violent one, and perhapse they could speak things through, rather than have a physical confrontation.

(Shadowmaster) "So. What has brought you here Serrakaan? Have you come to finish what was started long ago, or do you propose to end it?"

Serrakaan replied telepathically.

(Serrakaan) "I was sent by the Brotherhood of Makuta. They want you dead. For you have slain innocents, and here, that is a crime against the Great Spirit."

When Shadowmaster heard this, he almost could not believe it.

(Shadowmaster) "You are takeing orders from the Brotherhood!? Protecting the innocent!? How pathetic. Is this what you have been reduced to? Takeing orders from the inhabitants? Surley you know of the Great Spirit, and what it truely is? And you abide by its laws?

Serrakaan said nothing, only stood still. Shadowmaster as he looked at the Blood Summoner in confusion.

(Shadowmaster) "How could you lower yourself to their level? Did you do this on your own accord? How can they even speak to you knowing what you are? Oh........... They don't know what you are do they? They believe you are one of them! Unbelievable. However, you would not lower yourself to their standards without good reason. Why are you here of all places? What are you really after?"

Serrakaan once again did not respond.

(Shadowmaster) "Hm. Still not speaking to anyone. At least it is refreshing to see that nothing has changed. So, you are the infamous Blood Summoner I have heard so much about. Ha! I had thought it to be a myth. Never would I have thought you were responsible."

Serrakaan still did not say a word.

(Shadowmaster) "So. Should I call you Makuta Serrakaan now? Ha! It even sounds trivial comeing from my mouth. So, you are keeping up some sort of charade to fool everyone into thinking you belong here. What a suprise. Despite the fact I cannot see your true intentions, I know that you could not care less of the innocents here. And yet you abide by these foolish laws."

Serrakaan still maintained his silence, but did not deny anything Shadowmaster had to say.

(Shadowmaster) "So what happens next? We engage in combat? You and I both know you will need to use alot more force to challenge me, than your Makuta brothers would allow. Would you risk so many lives just to battle me? You know that you can't actually kill me, so what would be the point? You would lose everything, and all I would lose is a little armor. The Makuta would instantly see through your charade, and know that you are not one of them. They would cast you out, and you would be wanted all over this world. If your plan is contingent on your little secret, than I would suggest you leave. I promise I will not start this fight, and perhapse not even finish it. But if the fight begins, your whole plan would be hanging by a thread. Or do you think you can stop me before I unleash colateral damage? That is quite a risk dont you think?"

Serrakaan still said nothing. But instead, he walked over to the small table in the corner of the room. He picked up the single black peice, and he crushed it in his hand. He then let fall the small peices to the floor. Shadowmaster got an angered look on his face.

(Shadowmaster) "I see."

Serrakaan then slowly drew his sword. And held it out toward Shadowmaster. Shadowmaster smiled, and walked away from him. He went to the body of the Toa, and kicked its head over to Serrakaan. The head stopped rolling right at his feet.

(Shadowmaster) "I am sorry, my old friend. But I am not in the mood for a battle, but either way, you cannot escape one. I am afraid I must depart as of now. Until we meet again, old friend. And if all goes as planned, that meeting, will be quite soon."

Shadowmaster smiled, and then suddenly vanished. And at the same time, every tablet in the room went up in smoke, and dissappeared. Now the room was just empty, with only Serrakaan and the Toa's body to be seen.

Suddenly, the door to the room burst open, and Ra leapt inside. He emediately saw the situation, just as Shadowmaster had intended for it to look like. There was Serrakaan, whom Ra had never seen before. He was very tall, and he was quite terrifying to look upon. Ra emediately saw him as the Master that the other Toa spoke of. And his suspiscians were confirmed when he saw one of the Toa's heads lying at his feet.

(Ra) "Your cruelty will end tonight! For by the will of the Great Spirit, I will bring you to justice for your crimes!!!"

Serrakaan looked at Ra. By the look of Ra's stature, and speach, he would make a perfect Toa. But Serrakaan also saw that his level of power and ability were far beyond that of a Toa, so it was impossible that he was one. Serrakaan then remembered what Miserix had said before, "Kill any who spot you. Only spare the Matoran, and the Toa." But seeing as Ra was not actually a Toa, then Serrakaan had a duty to fulfil Miserix's request.

Ra leapt in the air, his sword raised over his head. He was about to hit Serrakaan directly in the collar, when suddenly Serrakaan swiped Ra's sword out of his hand with his own, and then grabbed him by the throat in mid air. Serrakaan then threw him against the empty bookcases, and sent them crashing down. Ra looked up and saw the Blood Sommoner about to land on him with his sword raised, and so Ra did a forward summersault, and leapt to the other side of the room. Serrakaan's feet cracked the stone when he landed, and his sword slammed hard against the floor with a loud clang. Ra ran at him from behind and tried to hit the dark one's back, but Serrakaan's body curved with the strike, and he returned a strike of his own at Ra. Ra was barely able to parry the blow, and it buckled his elbow when he did. He switched the sword to his left hand, as he needed time to get his right arm back in propper shape.

He began to parry all of Serrakaan's swift strikes. He was alot of trouble doing so however. Serrakaan was strikeing so fast, that he was actually feeling the air against the side of his head where Serrakaan had barely missed. Ra was finally able to get a little distance, when Serrakaan delivered a power strike to his blade, that bent Ra's wrist, and made him drop his sword.

Serrakaan then lurched forward and struck Ra with a back hand. Ra was flung across the room, and he slammed against the little table with the little peices on it. It broke and crashed to the ground. He was not feeling very well. Serrakaan had hit him so hard the he had knocked the breath out of him. He needed to get out of this room, as he could not any longer fight close quarter combat, as he had no sword. He looked up and saw that there was no ceiling. He then figured out how he was going to get out of there. It took him only a few seconds to think this, and only a few seconds to act. He turned around and broke the base of several of the bookcases. They each fell forward onto the large table in the middle of the room, and they formed a sufficiently high pile of rubble. One of the bookcases formed a perfect ramp and just in time too. This takes a few moments to describe, but it only happened in a few seconds. Serrakaan leapt over too him and jabbed his sword right at him. Ra jumped over Serrakaan, and landed on his back, and then leapt from his back to the bookcase. He began to run up the bookcase and he made a large leap. He was just about to reach for the edge of the roof, when he felt a hand wrap around his leg, and pull him down. Serrakaan then threw him to the floor with crushing power. Ra's back popped on impact, and he felt like his back was broken.

Serrakaan was about to stabb him, when Ra, in a desperate attempt to save his life, blasted a reckless blast of Sunlight. It hit Serrakaan square in the chest, and Serrakaan screamed when it hit him. He zoomed backward to the other side of the room. Ra slowly got up, and tried again to run up the ramp. He grabbed his sword and put it on his back, and then ran as fast as he could, and he leapt up to the edge of the roof. Serrakaan was in mid air about to grab him when he angled his body a certain way, and was barely able to dodge his grip. However, this awkward position he was in made it difficult to grab the ledge. He grabbed the ledge with one hand, but the velocity made the rest of his body go forward. This made him twist his wrist, and cause alot of pain. He almost let go, when he used his other hand to grab the ledge, and pull himself up.

He then slid down the side of the roof, and began to slowley climb down the side of the fortress. He was being very carful, trying not to fall. It was a long way down, and he would most likely not survive a fall from that height. He was slowly shimmying down the wall, when it suddenly exploded from the inside. He fell, and he fell far. In a moment of desperation, he was reeling his hands out, trying to find something to grab hold of. Out of sheer luck, he was able to grab onto a ledge that stuck out from the rock, and he hung on as tight as he could. He looked down and realized that he must have fallen quite a ways, as he was alot closer to the ground than he was before. In a feat of skill and agility, he let go of the ledge and landed on the slanted roof. He slid down it and leapt into the snow below. He shockingly felt nothing break, and nothing was hurt, so he assumed that it was time to get out of there.

When he looked back up at the wall he was blown from, there was of course a big hole, and through it, he saw Serrakaan. Ra emediately took action and shot a blast of sunlight at Serrakaan. Serrakaan leapt down and threw two Boomerang blades right at him. Ra was able to dodge one of them, but the other one struck his arm on the hand right when he was about to unleash another cuncussive blast of sunlight energy. The blade redirected his hand toward the cliff right when he released the blast of energy. It struk the cliff with a loud explosion, and most of it fell thousands of feet to the ground. Unfortuneately, the incident started an avalaunche, and thousands of pounds of snow started to plumit from the top of the mountain. It crashed against the fortress, and the fortress crumbled with it. Unfortuneately the fortress did not stop the falling snow, and it was tumbleing down to Ra's position!
Ra looked around, and realized he was really close to the edge of a cliff. He ran over to it, and then he looked down. It must have been several thousand feet to the bottom, and there was no way he could servive the fall. He then looked back at the rushing snow, and realized that he would have absolutely no chance if he got entombed inside all of it. In an act of survival, he leapt over the cliff, soon followed by tons of snow.

He was in mid air, when all of the sudden, Serrakaan leapt from out of nowhere and grabbed his anckle. Ra suddenly wnet from falling to his certain death, to slamming against a sandy beach. Serrakaan still had him by the foot, and Ra was desperate to get away. He flung out his arm and shot a blast of sunlight right at Serrakaan's hand. Serakaan let go and lurched backward. Ra then followed up that small blast with a very large one. Serrakaan vanished and appeared on one of the rocks above him, and blasted a large electrical sphere upon Ra. Ra bareley was able to get away from the ball of energy, but he was still in the radius of the explosion.

The explosion knocked him forward about forty feet, and he tumbled across the sand like someone who had skipped a rock across a pool of water. He lifted his face out of the sand and looked inland. The mountain they were on was miles away, and the avalaunche was still tumbleing down it. Serrakaan must have teleported them away at the last second, before they were encased in a frozen tomb.

He looked back at Serrakaan, who was slowly approaching, and realized that if he did not fight, and fight hard, that he would not survive the night. He slowly got up, and crouched into a fighting stance. He raised his hands in resistance, and then began a massive elemental fight.

At first Ra swung his legs forward and shot a large burst of sunlight the sweapt the floor of the beach Serrakaan leapt over it and slammed back down with a massive shadow blast. The shadow blast came cutting down like a knife, and it nearly hit Ra, but he dodged just in time. As a counter attack, he blasted a large burst, that nearly hit Serrakaan, but Serrakaan dissolved it with a wall of shadow.

Serrakaan then raised a large wall of shadow and sent it flying toward Ra. Ra jumped into the air and did a sideways spinn, landing on the ground with his hands. Just as his hands hit the ground, Serrakaan blasted another shadow blast at him. Ra leapt off his hands and shot a small bolt of sunlight at Serrakaan. It barely hit Serrakaan's shoulder, and it left a smokeing hole in his robes.

Ra neatly leapt up to a tall rock that was on the beach. He then created a large sphere of sunlight, and threw it toward Serrakaan. Serrakaan blasted it with shadow, and the sphere exploded on impact. The sunlight explosion knocked Serrakaan away just long enough for Ra to take out his sword, and readied himself for combat.

Serrakaan suddenly shot out his hand, and then, in a flash of black smoke, a long double bladed staff appeaered in his hand. Serrakaan then leapt up to Ra's position, and began to swing the staff toward him with frightening speed. Ra lifted his blade, almost just by instinct, and he felt the bladed staff colide with it. His hand bounced backward from the force, and he was almost cut down by Serrakaan. However, Ra was so agile and flexible, that he practically bent in half backward to avoid being cut in half with the bladed staff. Serrakaan then whirled around and tried to strike at Ra's feet. Ra leapt in the air, and came down hard with his sword, right on Serrakaan's shoulder. The sword did not cut through Serrakaan's armor however, in spite of the strength Ra used in the strike. Instead, the blade bounced back, and vibrated from the two metals clanging together.

Unfortunately, this left Ra in an exposed position, and Serrakaan took perfect advantage of it, by smacking Ra right under the eye in a truning back hand motion. Ra reeled away from the force of the blow, and was about to be stabbed by Serrakaan, but in an incredible feat of agility, he leapt up, and his feet came down on the staff, pinning it to the ground. He then leapt toward Serrakaan and gave a solid kick to his chest. Serrakaan let go of the staff and zoomed backward. He then spun around and blasted a bolt of lightning with both hands at Ra. Ra dropped to the ground and avoided the blast, he then leapt up and shot a sunlight bolt back at him. Serrakaan leapt down to the beach and avoided the blast, as it shattered the rocks behind him. Ra landed on a taller presipice near the rock they were just on. He turned around and saw Serrakaan leap high into the air, and telekinetically summon his staff to his hand, as he had it raised over his head to strike Ra.

Ra did a backwards roll, and avoided Serrakaan's stab to the ground, which shattered the stone that the staff came into contact with. While the staff was stuck in the ground however, Serrakaan sent a shattering blast down it's shaft, and into the ground. The ground exploded under Ra's feet, and sent him slamming to the ground, dropping his sword in the process.

Serrakaan tried to slam the blade down on Ra's body, in an attempt to vertically cut him in two, but Ra made a fast sideways roll to the left, and avoided the strike. Ra leapt up to his feet from his back, and readied himself. Serrakaan quickly followed up with a strike to the head, then one to the chest, and then one to the neck. Ra ducked the first one, feeling the wind from the strike hit his forhead, and then he reeled himself backward to dodge the strike to his chest. Unfortunately, when he shot his body backward, he left no room between him and the wall behind him to dodge another attack, so when Serrakaan struck at his neck, he leapt strait up, from a flat footed position, and executed a front flipp. Serrakaan's blade struck the wall where Ra's neck was the second before. As he pulled the blade out of the rock, Ra once again landed neatly in the middle of the shaft. However, Serrakaan saw this coming a second too soon for Ra, so when Ra landed on the shaft of his weapon, Serrakaan catapulted Ra strait in the air, like a seesaw. Ra was just over Serrakaan's head, when Serrakaan raised the other end of the blade, and made a vertical cut down Ra's chest. Ra was however lucky, as Serrakaan had intended for it to be much worse than the cut actually was.

Ra landed on his feet, and saw the inch deep cut left in his chest. But before he had time to think about wether or not it would kill him, Serrakaan turned around and smacked Ra with his blade, right below his left cheek bone. Right after that, Serrakaan tossed his staff at Ra, and the middle of the staff caught his neck, and the force sent Ra falling backward to the ground, and the staff went with him, landing right on his neck.

Ra could barely breath, as the staff was incredibly heavy! It was alot heavier than he had guessed, and so he tried to lift it off his neck, and he could barely lift it. This made him wonder just how strong Serrakaan had to be in order to swing the staff so fast that it was practically invisible.

He lifted it with great effort off of his chest, and onto the ground behind his head. He slowly got up and saw Serrakaan just standing there with his hand pointed at Ra. Ra did not know what he was dong, until he saw the massive gash in his chest practically squirting out blood. Ra then started coughing up the same substance, and it started comeing out of his nose, and eyes. He closed his eyes as the blood stung them a great deal.

However, he was not ready to give up. He clasped his hands together, and he formed a small sphere of sunlight energy, and he charged it with enough energy, so that it would explode on contact with matter. He then threw it at Serrakaan, or his general direction, and it exploded in a wild furry. Serrakaan leapt down to the beach to avoid the blast, and thus, the interruption stopped his bloody assault on Ra. Ra's blood flow emediately stopped, but he felt a little light headed, and not in the mood for more close quarter combat.

Despite not being able to bleed him out, Serrakaan still had every intent on killing Ra, and so he charge a large, cuncussive lightning sphere, and sent it flying at him. Ra saw it just in time, and leat down o the beach. However he was still in the blast radius, and it sent him slamming face first into the sand. Ra slowly got up, and about forty feet away stood Serrakaan, who looked combat ready, and almost not even tired. Ra realized that if he engaged Serrakaan in close quarter combat again, that his chances of coming out of it alive were very slim, and so he decided it would be best to keep him at a distance. So Ra planted his feet firmly in the sand, and prepared for and elemental battle.

Suddenly, they both simultaniously shot massive amounts of opposing energy at eachother. The blasts of shadow and sunlight colided, and it was like fire and water. The canceled eachother out, and neither Ra nor Serrakaan was stopping the assault. For ten seconds it went on, until Ra's got weaker, and a thin wall of shadow got arround Ra's blast, and shot about a foot from Ra's left flank. The blast was getting closer, and closer, as Serrakaan drove it toward him. Ra's feet were skidding on the ground, leaveing marks in the sand. Serrakaan was slowly walking toward him. Ra could not keep up the blast, and he was losing his control. Suddenly, he could not hold it any longer. He cut off the blast, and a massive wall of shadow came blasting toward him. Ra tried to leap out of the way, but the wall of shadow covered to much range, and he was hit with the brunt of it. Ra flew to the opposite side of the beach, and hit a strong rock wall. He fell to the ground, grunting in extreme pain, from both the wall of shadow, and the force of the rock wall. When he was struk with the shadow, it was the most repulsive thing he had ever felt. Not just because of the pain, but just for the sheer difference from his element.

He was abot to get up, when Serrakaan kicked him with incredible force. He slammed into the wall again, and then before he hit the ground, Serrakaan grabbed him by the throat, and slammed him into the wall. Serrakaan was squeezing with full force, and Ra felt like his head was going to pop off from the sheer pressure. Ra then realized he had one last chance at living. A blast of sunlight came from his mouth and hit him square in the chest. Serrakaan screamed in pain or disgust, and threw Ra to the other side of the shore.

Ra looked at Serrakaan, and saw that where he hit him, and there was a large smoking hole in his chest. Serrakaan looked at him with rage, and then shot forth a blast of Black Lightning. Ra did not know of how destructive it was, so instead of trying to dodge, he sent a wall of sunlight headed right toward it. There was an uncanny explosion, and it sent Serrakaan slamming into the sand, and it sent Ra flying once again into the side of a cliff. This time, the force was sufficient enough to shatter the rock, and nearly break Ra's back.

Ra screamed in agony, and he could not move his legs. Serrakaan suddenly appeared before him, he had apparently taken alot of damage from the explosion, as alot of his cloaks were torn. Serrakaan raised his hands and blasted a constant flow of lightning. Ra screamed in pain, as the volts coarsed all through his body. After about thirty seconds of this, Serrakaan halted his assault, and looked at him. Ra was smoking, and his armor was seered from the heat. Serrakaan was surprised at how Ra had not died from the electrical shock, confirming his certainty that Ra, was in fact, not a Toa.

However, Toa or not, he could not let him live, as he had already seen to much of him, and would by a viable threat to him if he let him live any longer. Serrakaan unsheathed his blade, and raised it over Ra. He was about to behead the guardian, when Ra, in a final attempt to defeat Serrakaan, let all of the energy in his body explode outward. A huge explosion of sunlight came from Ra's mouth and hands. Serrakaan raised his arm over his face, and barely blocked it. However, this was not enough to stop the blast, and it sent Serrakaan reeling backward toward the beach. Ra looked and saw something that rather shocked him. When he let lose all of his sunlight energy, when the light hit Serrakaan, instead of a black, dark, menaceing figure, for a split second, he saw a different looking being entirely. He was the same hight as Serrakaan, but instead of terrifying, this being looked heroic, if not angelic. He was cladd in white, and his armor was white and silver. After the light faded, the darkened visage returned, and he was as he was the whole night. A dark, demonic, shadow of the being he had seen. Ra had no clue as to what he had just seen, but if he knew, he would be completely awe inspired.

Serrakaan's robes were a complete wreck. One of his sleeves were missing, and a large portion of the cloak that covered his chest was gone. Other than that, the hems of his robes were torn and ragged. He had obviousley taken a huge blow from that sunlight blast, and it had effected him far more than Ra had realized.

Ra tried to crawl away into the jungle, but by the fact that he could not move his legs made it quite difficult. He was almost there, when suddenly Serrakaan's shadow rose in front of him. Ra turned around, and positioned himself on his back. He looked up at Serrakaan, who had his blade ready to stab Ra right in the chest. Serrakaan slowly pulled his blade back, and was about to peirce Ra right in the chest, when he heard something behind him.

Ra looked out at the ocean behind Serrakaan. There was a massive wave comeing toward them. It was shaped like a tube, and it was headed for them rather quickly. Suddenly, out of the ocean came a huge monster. It resembled a snakelike creature, and it had massive jaws. It all happened so fast, that Serrakaan did not turn around, until it was too late.

The monster slammed its jaws down on Serrakaan, and engulfed him in its mouth in one bite. The monster then slowly withdrew back into the water, not even bothering to eat Ra. Ra almost could not believe his luck, but he had little time to consider it, as he fell faint, and passed out on the sandy beach. As he did, he heard the sound of someone approaching him, and that was the last thing he heard before utter blackness took over all of his senses.

Chapter 11 ~ A Fresh Start.[]

Ra awoke suddenly. He had had a very rough night beforehand, and he was barely able keep his eyes open because of pain. He raised up and looked around; The room he was in was very lavish. It had a chandelier in the middle of the ceiling, it had red carpet, and the walls were also painted red. He looked around and also saw that the room was well furnished, with a bed, a couch, and two chairs across from the couch. He almost felt like roalty just by the feel of the room.

He stood up and emediately felt sore. His legs felt like they had been way overused, and his back felt like it had been almost broken. He staitened himself, and he heard a popping go up and down his back, he also felt a long ring of pain go up his spine.

He grunted loudly, and stamped his foot on the floor in pain, as it was nearly unbareable. Tears came to his eyes, and he sat back down on the bed. He wiped them away, and looked across the room; There was a large mirror on the wall opposite him, and when he looked into it, he was quite astonished at what he saw. He had alot of bruised areas on his body in between his armor; He had a large cut down the center of his chest, and a small cut right under his eye. Just to be simple, he looked like he had been run over by a herd of Kikannolo.

He laid back and put his arms behind his head for support. He was relaxed, and it felt like it had been a while since he was last comfortable. Yet he was still guilty in the back of his mind. He never told anyone that he was a Guardian, and not a Toa. However, he really loved the rules that the Toa abided by, and he almost wished that he was a Toa. The fellowship the Toa had with one another was something he craved, as he had felt as alone as he possibly could be when he came here to this world.

But the thing he may have endeared most about poseing as a Toa, was the admiration that the Matoran gave him. They trusted him with their lives, and well being. They aspired to be like him, and that made Ra feel that perhapse he was not alone after all. Espescially this Ko Matoran Kollus. He befriended Ra from the first day they met, and Ra almost felt guilty to leave him, as he felt the need to travel, instead of staying just in one place. In fact, Ra pondered the idea of asking him to come along with him to other islands, but to do that woul not only show partiality against the other Matoran that wanted to get to know him, but it would also take Kollus away from his friends. He wondered if being a Toa always felt so difficult, with so much responsibility on his shoulders.

As he thought these things however. he suddenly noticed the door open, and a little Matoran head popped in. He smiled and winked at the Matoran in a kind gesture. The Matoran emediately withdrew its head from the room and shut the door.

(Ra) "Wait a minute! Who are you? What's your name?"

The door suddenly slowly popped open again, and the Matoran slowly walked in. She walked over to Ra's bedside, and Ra could tell she was nervouse.

(Terreskah) "Sorry. I did not mean to wake you."

She gave a nervouse smile, and clasped her hands behind her back.

(Ra) "You have nothing to worry about. I just woke up, so you came in just in time. What's your name?"

(Terreskah) "Terreskah. I am a Ga matoran from the village by the beach. We found you all....... Oh I'm so sorry. What's your name?"

(Ra) "You can call me Ra. Everyone does. Go ahead with your sentence by the way. You found me?"

(Terreskah) "Yes. Well I mean no. We found you. Me and two others."

(Ra) "Really? Who are these two others?"

(Terreskah) "A couple of visitors to the island. A Ta Matoran from the Southern Continent named Telnor, and a Ce Matoran fron Tersvranem named Jarodin. I was showing them the beach when we found you."

(Ra) Did you see anything, or anyone around when you had found me?"

(Terreskah) "No. Just you. Why? Do you have a team with you?"

(Ra) "No. It was just me. By the way, do you know a Matoran named Kollus?"

(Terreskah) "Ha. Kollus is just another lame brained Ko Matoran. He has some issues. Like he aspires to be the most famouse Toa in the world one day. Ha! He wants to be famouse. I wonder if he actually wants to do anything that defines a good Toa, or if he just likes the armor that comes with the job."

(Ra) "Kollus is very heroic to a certain degree. He actually helped my fight off some visciouse enemies last night."

(Terreskah) "Last night? That is impossible."

(Ra) "Why is that?"

(Terreskah) "You were here last night, and have been for the last two weeks."

(Ra) "TWO WEEKS! I have been out for two weeks!"

(Terreskah) "Yeah. For a while we thought you would never wake up, but you were breathing, so we just assumed we would wait for you to come too. That reminds me, I won that bet with Telnor."

(Ra) "What bet?"

(Terreskah) "Well Telnor bet that you would not wake up for a whole nother week. Ha! He now ows me that ticket he got to the races."

(Ra) "Races? What races?"

(Terreskah) "Wow. You really don't know! Oh my gosh! You really must not get around very much. These races are famouse through the Northern Continent, and they are also somewhat famouse in the Southern Continent. But the prized winner of all the races lives here, on the Northern Continent!! Oh if ever I become a Toa, I want to be just like her. Her armor is so flawless!"

(Ra) "The prized winner is a Toa? That is stange. Does she have a team?"

(Terreskah) "Not that I know of, she came here three years ago, and has been famouse ever since. She is not nessescarily a Toa "Hero", but she is pretty strong in her element. She sometimes uses it in the races. Oh, she is a Toa of lightning by the way."

(Ra) "So she is not a protector? That does not sound very honorable."

(Terreskah) "Well, I guess it depends on what you define a Toa to be. She is kinda the perfect role model. Every Ga Matoran in this entire village wants to be just like her. So I guess she is sending a positive influence to the Matoran."

(Ra) "Yet by denying her duty as a Toa is not being a good influence if you ask me. She is makeing Matoran think that it is ok to throw away the reponsibilities of becomeing a Toa."

(Terreskah) "Well, rumor has it that she used to have a team, but she never said what happened to them."

(Ra) "How many tickets do you have?"

(Terreskah) "You wanna go? Sorry. They completely sold out on the first day, and I doubt Jarodin will give his ticket up. But you can come with us to the raceing stadium, you just won't have a seat. But there are several large screens on the outside, so you can still see what's going on."

They were still in the midst of their conversation when Terreskah heard her name being called. She made her goodbyes and left Ra alone in the room. He stood up and streched out his arms. He slowly made his way to the door, and then he opened it. He looked out in the hallway; It was just as lavish as the room. He walked down the steps, holding tightly to the rail, and eventually he got to the bottom. When he did, he saw several Maotoran standing in a circle. One of them was a Ta Matoran, and he looked a little dissapointed at the news that Terreskah just gave him. He passed on a small metal card over to her, and she held it with great care. Another Matoran laughed at the Ta Matoran, saying that he would learn that Terreskah always won a bet. Just as they were about to turn and leave, they saw Ra, and they emediately stoped what they were doing.

(Terreskah) "Hey! You're up!"

She ran over to him and grabbed him by the arm, and then pointed to the other Matoran.

(Terreskah) "Let me introduce you to my friends. The pouty Ta Matoran is Telnor, and that's............ Jarodin! Hahahahaha!!! "

(Ra) "What is so funny?"

(Terreskah) "Oh. It is just that when we found you, Jarodin thought that you were a Toa of fire!! Hahahaha!!!!"

(Jarodin) "It was dark. For a minute I thought that maybe he was!"

(Ra) "So you three are the ones who found me. I must say that I owe you a debt of gratitude."

(Telnor) "Thanks..."

(Terreskah) "Oh cheer up Telnor. It's not like you will miss anything at the race. We all know who will win."

(Telnor) "Oh, I see. You think it is funny that I am going to miss out? I spent seven hundered widgets to get that ticket!"

(Terreskah) "No. I mean literally you won't miss out. Here is your ticket back."

(Telnor) "What! Are you kidding!?"

(Terreskah) "Nope. I have had my own this whole time. I just wanted to see your reaction."

(Telnor) "Why would you do that!!! I would have had nothing to do if I could not go. The only substitute would be to listen to stupid stories from Turaga Ulnar."

(Ra) "Is the Turaga here?"

(Telnor) "Yup, he is up the stairs, to your left. That is his room."

(Ra) "Thank you. I need to speak with him about something."

(Jarodin) "You know him?"

(Ra) "Yes. I met him up in his village in the mountains."

(Jarodin) "Good thing you weren't up there. There was an avalaunche up there two weeks ago. It wiped out the whole village."

Ra dropped his jaw in horror.

(Ra) "What? Was anyone hurt?"

Everyone looked at the floor in sadness. Terreskah was the first to repond.

(Terreskah) "There was a search party for several Matoran two days ago. They didn't make it."

Ra was sad to hear this, as he remembered going to that mountain, but he did not remember anything about an avalaunche. He decided that it would be best to go to Turaga Ulnar, and see if he could get some help from him. But before he left he turned to the Matoran and said.

"It was nice to meet you all. I hope to see you again soon."

He smiled, but only in vain, for as soon as he went up the stairs and turned the corner, he put his hand to his head and tried to understand how he couldn't remember anything. His memory stopped right when he opened a door into the top room of the fortress. After that, all of it is just a blank. For he did not know that Serrakaan stripped his memory of himself, and the entire fight they had. For Serrakaan did not kill him, so he could not allow him to remember anything that transpired between them. However, these memories are stored somewhere in his mind, and it is only a matter of time before he peices together what really happened.

Deep under Destral.

Serrakaan suddenly appeared in his quarters under Destral. He was not in the best shape, and he certainly did not want his fellow Makuta to see him possibley wounded. He was all wet, and covered in blood from head to toe. His cloaks were torn all over the place, and he had lost both sleeves of his robe. His hood was still intact, but barely. He also had to yank a massive tooth out of his shoulder. In short, he looked like he had just survived an attack from Sarkanian, which was the exact case.

Serrakaan was angered that a potentially intelligent Rahi was holding a grudge. However, what Serrakaan did to it this time may keep it away for quite some time. As it had been seen, he was swallowed hole by the monster. As it swallowed him however, Serrakaan imbeaded his hands into the sides of its throat, and slowly climbed his way back up the monsters throat, causing excrusciating pain for both him and the monster. After he finally got into its mouth, the monster bit down, and imbeaded its teeth into Serrakaan's upper body. Serrakaan grabbed the monster's tounge, and poisoned it, then, he electrocuted it. The monster opened wide its jaws and swam away. However, Serrakaan was under water, so he had to swim to the surface, and find out where he was, which was off the coast of Nynrah! He then teleported back to Destral.

He was now walking into a new room. The stone door opened automatically at his presence, and he walked inside. Inside this circular room was his armory, and in short, it was massive! There were weapons lineing the walls everywhere, and also some armor, of course. In fact, there was a massive armor at the end of the room. It was approximately forty feet high, and it had spikey armored plates all over it, with a hood of course, but no cloak. The hood was connected to the massive armor, so that his face could still not be seen.

There was also a smaller armor beside it, about the size of a Toa, so Serrakaan could preform operations without the burden of his hight or weight. It was not cloaked at all, but Serrakaan would more than likely wear one with it anyway.

And also on the other side of the massive armor, was his current form, and the form he usually took. It was taller than the Toa sized one, yet shorter than the forty foot one. It was his favorite, and the one that he was most comfortable in.

These armors however cannot acually be worn. They are metal sculpts of forms he takes, or has taken in the past. He just shape shifts into that very form, with no need of removeing armor, or puting more on.

Lineing the walls were shelves, and on each shelf was a weapon. There were about thirty shelves with weapons on them, and Serrakaan new how to use each and every one of them with powerful precision. In one corner was a large table with his mace on it, as it was too big for a wall shelf. In another corner was another table with his massive spiked flail on it. The room itself was not at all cluttered, but was perfectly organized. In the middle of the room however, was a pedestal, and on it was a horrific looking helmet. This peice of armor covered his whole head, includeing his face, and it was frightening to look at even without a person wearing it. This was not to be mistaken as Serrakaan's mask however, as his mask fits tightly to his face, and barely hinges away from it.

Serrakaan, soon after he entered the room, took off his cloaks, and incinerated them. He then walked over to a stack of stone drawers. He pulled one out, and there were several spare cloaks inside. He took one out, and slowly put it on, and it fully covered his body, without tears, or even a slight flaw that would ever suggest a battle. After this, he left the room, and the stone door shut behind him.

He walked through several hallways, until he got to another door. It opened, and inside was a bare room, with only one thing on the opposite end of it. It was his throne. The throne was neatly carved out of stone, and had paterns on it that seemed artistic, yet gothic. He walked over to it, and sat down. He felt comforted to finally be back to his own resting place.

However, his solitude did not last long, as he soon had visitors. These visitors were obviousley not unesxpected, as Serrakaan never made a move when they made their presence known. They walked out of the shadowy corners of the room, and stopped in front of Serrakaan. They were each marked with a hooded robe, yet they all had their differences. There were five of them, and ech one was extinguished by several key features.

The first one, and the tallest among them, probably looked the most like Serrakaan. He was tall, maybe just as tall as Serrakaan. His hooded robe covered most of his body, but the chest peice of the robe was open, so the chest armor could be seen. His sleeves stopped at his forearms, and, like all of them, his face was not visible. Yet the thing that destinguished him most, was his white eyes.

The second one, was shorter, about the size of a Toa. He had a robe that was bound in the middle by a black tie. His robes were almost completely black, with silver flames outlineing there edges. His eyes shown red through the darkness under the hood.

The third was the same height as the one before him, and he had a sleevless robe, that opened all the way down the front of his body. His armor was like Serrakaan's, silver and black. He was still hooded, and yet, like Serrakaan, no eyes were visible.

The fourth, was once again, close to the hieght of the last two. He was wearing a cloak that opened up all the way in the front, so that his body could be seen. The amor was black, with a pale red. His cloak had sleeves, and a hood as well. His eyes shown a very pale, and hauntingly frightening blue.

The last one seemed to be the most imposing bodily wise. His arms were huge, and he seemed to be brutally strong. He wore a sleevless hooded robe, and his armor was entirely black. He was taller then the other three, but not as tall as the first. His eyes shown as black, with a white outline.

All of these figure were standing in front of Serrakaan, as if they were waiting for him to speak with them. Finally, Serrakaan spoke. His voice was smooth, yet powerful. It was void of an individual pitch, as it was almost like an overpowering whisper, makeing it quite demonic.

"I summoned you here for one purpose. The Shadowmaster is here, and he is unwelcome. I want you to find him, and........

There was a long pause before he finished his sentence.

"Provoke him."

The meaning of this was a little different than the actual deffinition of the word. By provoke, Serrakaan most likely meant, "Beat the life out of him, and make him angery." This was his command, and after they heard it, they all walked in single file out the door Serrakaan had entered moments before. The Shadowmaster was about to have some unwanted, and familiar guests.

On the Northern Continent, in a Ko Matoran Fortress.

Ra was right outside of the Turaga's door; He had been a little nervouse about seeing him again, for he had this feeling that he would not be happy to see him. The last time he had seen Turaga Ulnar, there was much enthuziasm, and much insurrance that the right things could be accomplished, and confidence that Ra had the capablilities to stop this new danger to their village. In a way he did though, not that he entirely remembered.

He felt extreamely uncomfortable to think that he may have caused the accident that killed several Matoran, even though Serrakaan caused it, he never remembered anything about the fight, so how could he ever know the truth? He did come to a possible solution however. He remembered that Ulnar had the mask of foresight, and he wondered if maybe the mask could work backward. Maybe, he reasoned, the Turaga could see past events, and determine weather or not it was his fault.

He knocked on the door, and he heard an old voice invite him in. He walked inside, and saw the Turaga sitting on a circular seat, faceing a window, that showed the beautiful mountains. When he looked out the window, he realized that they were alot higher up than he had guessed. They were apparently at the top of a tower somewhere.

As he observed these things , the Turaga turned around and addressed him.

(Ulnar) "Ah Ra. It is good to see you in better health. For a while, we assumed that you may not make it."

(Ra) "Thank you Turaga. It is good to see you as well."

There was a long pause, for Ra did not exactly know what to say.

(Ra) "Look, I have a problem. I heard that there was an avalaunche, and that it took several Matoran with it. I remember that I was up there, fighting several rebel Toa, and than my memory just goes blank, and I don't know why! I really just want to know, if it was my fault. I was there, I was using sufficient force against the Toa of Shadow, and maybe I lost contol. I just don't remember, and I can't live with the idea that maybe, I killed those Matoran."

Ulnar paused for a long time as he was trying to think of how to respond to this.

(Ulnar) "You cannot blame yourself for something you did not do. I looked into your future, and saw how it was caused. Unfortuneately, you had a small part to play, but it was not entirely your fault. I saw the avalaunche in enough time to evacuate the village, but several Matoran, along with Kollus, went up there to help you with whatever killed that Toa."

(Ra) "Wait! How do you know about that if you only saw the avalaunche?"

(Ulnar) "Because, Kollus survived to tell the tail. He is alive."

(Ra) "Thank Mata Nui! How did he survive?"

(Ulnar) "He left behind some equipment, and went to go back and get it, but his friends were already near the fortress when the avalaunche started, so there was no chance for them."

(Ra) "Thank you for the news about Kollus, but my question remains. How did I aid in the starting of the avalaunche?"

(Ulnar) "You were fighting something. Or you were trying to escape from it. I am not certain which is more accurate. You charged a powerful blast of your element, and you were about to unleash it, when someone threw a blade at your arm, and redirected the blast. It his the side of the mountain, and that is how it started."

Ra just then noticed a large bruise on his right arm down by his wrist. Apparently only the hilt of the blade hit his arm, but it was enough to cause damage, and a natuaral disaster. He was lucky that his arm was not cut from his arm.

(Ra) "Who was I fighting off?"

Ulnar paused again. As he looked troubled with this question.

(Ulnar) "I don't know. When I tried to see it, I only saw a blure. It is very rare for someone to interfere with my mask power, but whoever it was made sure his appearance went unseen, and his identity unknown. The best description I have of the attacker is a tall, hooded and cloaked being, with sharp claws. That is the description given to me by Kollus, and he only saw him for a single second, so it is an uncorroberated, and a rather scetchy description. Whoever it was made sure that he could not be traced by his appearance anywhere."

(Ra) "If only I could remember!! Ugh. I want to, but it makes my head hurt!"

(Ulnar) "I may have a reason for your memory loss. Sometimes, when someone has a very bad experience with something, or someone, the mind will withdraw the memories, and place them somewhere in your brain. Now this does not mean that they are gone for good. I have done some research on this type of brain chemistry. Basically, your mind has a room with those unseen memories, and it is locked down, so you may not access them. But, there is somehwere, a key or a trigger, that will open that door. Most likely, if you ever saw the person who did all of this to you again, that would be the trigger to remembering what really happened. But if I were you, now that you know what started the avalaunche, and that you survived it, I would not wish to access any more memories having to do with that night. Due to your condition, any memory that you receive from that night is bound to be unpleasant."

(Ra) "There is another question that comes to mind. If I started the avalaunche in the mountains, how did I end up on the beach several dozen miles away?"

Ulnar looked just a confused as Ra.

(Ulnar) "For now, there is no explanation. But who knows. Maybe one day, you will find a trigger that opens your mind to those memories. But I do not think that you will like what you remember. All the same, I am glad that you are beggining to recover. Oh, before I forget, Kollus wanted to speak with you when you woke up. He can be found on the twenty eighth floor of this building. He will be glad to see you."

This made Ra get a wide grin on his face, as he was glad that Kollus was not mad at him, or resentful of him. He emediately gave his goodbyes to the Turaga, and left to go see Kollus. Perhapse he still had a living friend on the Northern Continent after all.

Chapter 12 ~ Uninvited Guests.[]

Serrakaan was walking through the halls of his quarters; He had just sent his most powerful, and most secret assassins to go head to head with Shadowmaster. Serrakaan knew however, despite their combined power, that they would not be able to kill Shadowmaster. However, Serrakaan did not want him dead, only distracted. Shadowmaster's presence in this world has discomforted Serrakaan greatly. If Shadowmaster comes clean with his threats to expose Serrakaan as a fraud, than Serrakaan's whole plan lies hanging by a thread. Serrakaan sent his assassins to fight him in the hopes that they would be able to violently convince him to leave, however, things are never quite so simple with Shadowmaster. Eventually, after a half hour of thinking, Serrakaan came up with a plan B should his assassins fail to drive him off. If they did not do the job, he would have to attend to him, personally.

After Serrakaan carefully laid out his plan in his mind, he stood up from his throne, and left the chamber. He walked down several long hallways until he came to a large stone door. It opened automatically at his presence, and after it raised out of the way, he walked in, and the door shut behind him.

As he walked into the room, many lights came on, but not enough to illuminate the room, but just enough to reveal what he had inside the room. There were many shelves, stands, tables, and displays in the room, and on each one of these, stood a certain artifact. In the middle of the room, was a large statue of Serrakaan, with his sword in his hand, and surrounding that statue, were spoils from his victems.

On one table, in a corner all on its own, was the tooth of Sarkanian that he had retrieved when the monster attempted to consume him. In one of the glass cases, was a battle damaged plasma blaster, with three smoke grenades set in a curve around it. These spoils were from the occasion when he had faced a bounty hunter named Skorr on the island of Stelt. There was another glass case with a Dragon sniper rifle sitting on display, with light grenades sitting around it. These were spoils from his mission to the Northern Continent, when he had to deal with the many Mercinaries under Zorron's command in the forest near the beach. There was also a bent sword with unknown inscriptions carved into the blade, that he had retrieved from his fight with a being named Irostenese, when he came to Destral.

There were other trinkets set around the center statue besides these, yet these were his favorites. After he looked at these, he walked over to a glass case. Inside the case, was a small table, with little squares painted on it's surface. Serrakaan reached inside his cloak, and pulled out a small, black, piece of wood. It was in the shape of a being, who wore a black cloak around his shoulders. This little figurine, was taken from Shadowmaster's observatory on the Northern Continent only the day before. He placed the peice in the middle of the board, and closed the glass case. After this, he turned around, walked to the center of the room.

He looked around, and gazed at his collection. These battles and murders he recals with so much pleasure, that looking at these reminders, and just seeing them in his possession, brought him something that almost resembled happiness. But despite the pleasure he took just from these alone, his lust for more of these "Trophies" would never be satisfied.

On the Western Coast of Nynrah, high in the Mountains.

Shadowmaster peered out into the open ocean, with the large full moon gleaming off the edge of the waves. The stars were very bright, and each one he could call out by name. His new fortress was not very large, but it served his purpose well. Instead of a large, recognizable fortress, he carved a large circular room into the top of one of the mountains, and there was a secret entrance through a cave at the base of the mountain. The observatory was alot larger than he previous one, but it still held all of his valuable things, such as his tablets, and his weapons.

He looked up at the open sky, and he saw that everything was almost perfect. There were no foolish servants to look after, no Matoran settlers nearby, and no noise to inturrupt the perfect silence. However, it was still very quiet anyway, too quiet. He had a bad feeling that before the night was over, something bothersome would happen.

In this frame of mind, he decided that he would return to his dwelling, and read the stars, as if they were an open book. He teleported to the middle of his observatory; he almost felt as if he were being watched, not that this frightened him, it only irritated him that no one would leave him alone to his solitude. He walked over to an elegant display of weapons, and he took his favored staff into his hand.

He looked up at the rim of the ceiling, and at first he saw nothing, then he saw five things, like black pillars riseing up around the rim of his observatory; Their shadows cast across the floor. Shadowmaster emediately new who they were, and he realized exactly who sent them.

They all leapt down in a large circle around Shadowmaster. Shadowmaster looked around and saw every single one of them slowly draw out their weapons, all in perfect harmony. Shadowmaster looked ahead at the one who had white eyes. Shadowmaster did not quite expect to see him among them, yet with their master's corrupting influence, he was not suprised.

There was obviousley going to be a fight, and Shadowmaster was quite ready for it. He had everything he needed. But before the fight, he said one thing.

"So, the Hand of Fear sent the Dark Lords of Morrion to vanquish me. Certainly he knew better."

After this was said, the whole room lurched into chaos.

Suddenly, Shadowmaster dissappeard, and then in his place, five more appeared at the same time! The Dark Lords were confused as to which on to assault, so they attacked every last one of them. One of the Dark Lords had a sickle, and attacked the Shadowmaster from behind. Shadowmast easily dodged the blow, and in return smacked his staff across the Dark ones face, knocking him to the ground. However, as he did this, the large, bulky one slammed his hammer into the back of Shadowmaster's head. Shadowmaster shot forward into the wall, and dissappeared, with another soon replaceing him.

The others were also fighting, each Shadowmaster seemingly haveing a mind of their own. The one Dark Lord who was not participateing in the fight (The one with white eyes) was standing atop of the observatory, watching his comrades fight each Shadowmaster. They were doing well for a minute there. Several times they took down a Shadowmaster, however, each tme they did, another would appear.

(Notice: The following fights with each combatant were all simultaneousely being fought.)

The bulky one lifted one of the Shadowmasters by the throat, and slammed him into the floor. Then he raised his heel high into the air and slammed it into the back of it's head. As soon as he did that however, it vanished and appeared behind him, and smacked him in the side of the head with his rock hard staff, stunning him. He then leapt up and kicked him into the far wall, makeing it crack. The Dark Lord slowly got up, and continued his fight with Shadowmaster. His arms were huge, and he launched several punches at Shadowmaster, all of which Shadowmaster avoided. However, when Shadowmaster appeared behind him, he was able to catch him by the waist, and hurl him into the wall accross the observatory. That Shadowmaster dissappeared on impact, and reappeared right in front of him. He slammed his staff on his shoulder, and then landed a blow to his head, then he slammed it into his knee, crippleing him, and then suddenly, out of a shaded corner behind the Dark Lord came a body flying right at him. The body hit the large, strong Dark Lord, and knocked him to the floor, both assassins seemingly defeated for the time being.

The dark Lord who possessed the sickle showed excellent power over shadow. He was created walls of it, and throwing it at Shadowmaster, and then he would jump into a dark corner, and come out of another. The speed he showed was acceptional, and he was able to land several quick blows to Shadowmaster before he leapt into another dark corner, and then appearing behind him. He was even able to kill several of the copies all on his own, with his masterful skill with his weapon. Shadowmaster was having a little trouble pinning him down, and he was getting frustrated by this, so he purposefully turned his back to a dark corner, and began to fight this Dark Lord. Shadowmaster swung his staff at his head, and missed, then he swung it at his feet, and the Dark Lord did a sideways flip into another shaded corner. Shadowmaster knew he was going to appear behind him, and so he turnedand threw his staff at the shaded corner behind him, right when the Dark Lords head appeared. It whacked him right in the head, hindering his jump, and stunning him. But before he fell to the ground, Shadowmaster caught him by the foot, and slammed him several times into the floor. He then threw him into a shaded corner, and his body came plummeting out of another, and he slammed into another one of his comrades in mid battle.

Another one of the assassins was being quite difficult to deal with, as he was working well with another assassin to deal heavy damage, despite the difference in their elements. One had the ability to control ice, and the other had the power of fire. They were quite a substancial team, as they had already destroyed three of Shadowmaster's copies. Once, the assassin with ice powers completely froze Shadowmaster, and then imploded him into small shards of ice. Another time, the assassin froze his feet to the floor, while the other shot a cuncussive fire ball, that struck Shadowmaster right in the head, beheading him. They were also parrying his attacks with their swords, and returning attacks of their own. Shadowmaster however found a way to cause good conflict in between the two, by teleporting himself around them, and causing their opposite elements to colide. They were about to get a handle on this new technique, when Shadowmaster teleported three of his copies around them, and all thre blasted huge blasts of Shadow. The team of assassins was not powerful enough to repel them, and so they were caught in the explosion of combined elements, and they were stunned by the attack. Shodowmaster then proceeded to grab the assassin with ice abilities, and throw him to the floor with crushing power. He then slammed his staff into the head of the other assassin, nearly knocking him out. As normal as the attack might seem, a strike from Shadowmaster's staff is enough to kill any ordinary being, which just demonstrates how these assassins were not normal beings. However, despite their resistence, even they could not stand up to his might.

The fight between Shadowmaster and the assassins went on for several more minutes, with chaos as the ruleing element of the fight. However, despite Shadowmaster's power, they just were not dying. It was as if they were undead, or immortal, and that they just would not die. More of Shadowmaster's copies were being killed, and Shadowmaster was not getting anywhere in the fight, so he decided to end it.

He withdrew all of his copies into one form at the center of the room. He then raised his staff, and smashed it into the floor, causing a tremendous shockwave, that knocked all of the assailants to the floor or walls of the room with crushing force. They all droped their weapons, and Shadowmaster was the only one standing in what had now almost become an arena. Shadowmaster looked up at the one Dark Assassin who had not joined the fight. He was still just standing there, just watching Shadowmaster with his cold white eyes, and as the assassin began to get up from their crumbled heaps, the Dark Lord raised his hand, and all of the assassins stoped in their tracks. Shadowmaster smirked at this demonstration of his authority, and began to speak.

(Shadowmaster) " Hmm. It seems that you have run out of options, my friend. Your servants are quite powerful, yet even they cannot defeat me, even with their combined efforts. I am afraid your friend who posses as a Makuta will be quite dissapointed in your failure."

The Dark Assassin with the white eyes then spoke two words.

(Arracknomon) "Leave us"

With that said, all of them dissappeared, leaving only him and Shadowmaster on the battlefront.

(Shadowmaster) "There is much confidence in you. But you are a fool to face me alone"

The assassin named Arracknomon suddenly appeared about thirty feet in front of Shadowmaster, and he did not do so by means of teleportation, he was just that incredibley fast. Shadowmaster raised his staff, and Arracknomon took from his robes a long thin blade, with an almost black metal. The moon gleamed off of it's flanks, as Arracknomon held the sword to his side. Shadowmaster smiled, and readied his weapon, as the fight was soon to begin.

Shadowmaster made the first move, and sent a concentrated blast of energy from his staff flying at Arracknomon. Arraknomon dodged the attack, so fast as a matter of fact, that Shadowmaster almost did not even see him move. Arracknomon then sped to the oposite end of the arena, then to the top of the arena, then back to the middle, confuseing Shadowmaster as to where his next move would be. Finally however, Arracknomon appeared right in front of Shadowmaster, and blasted him with a wall of Shadow.

Shadowmaster fell back, but very quickly got back up. Arracknomon zoomed once again to the other side of the arena, and he raised his hands over his head, and Shadowmaster saw black lightning coiling around his arm. Arracknomon then unleashed it at Shadowmaster.

Shadowmaster dodged the blast, and managed to avoid the blast radius, however, as soon as he got away from that blast, Arracknomon changed positions and shot another bolt of black lightning at him! Shadowmaster once again was able to dodge, however, he was not quick enough for Arracknomon's third blast. Arracknomon appeared on the other side of the arena, and sent one more blast toward Shadowmaster. It did not directly hit him, but it was very close, and the blast launched Shadowmaster into the far wall, and sent it crumbleing down.

Shadowmaster looked up and saw that this series of attacks had drained alot of power from Arracknomon, and he was stopping for a breath. Shadowmaster lurched forward, and sent three successful blasts of deadly energy, that each slammed into the Dark assassin. Arracknomon must have felt excrusciating pain, but he was somehow able to overcome it, and began to once again zoom to different parts of the arena. Shadowmaster was very irritated by this, as he could not plant another successful hit.

Suddenly, Shadowmaster felt a sharp pain in his shoulder blade, and he gave a quick glance and saw that the assassin had stabbed him with his cold black blade. Shadowmaster however, now had the advantage, as Arracknomon was now close enough to hit. He swung his staff right to his head, and sent Arracknomon slamming into the far wall.

Arracknomon emediately got up, and sped right in front of Shadowmaster, and smacked his head with the flat of his blade, and zoomed to the other side of the arena. Shadowmaster than got an idea. He waited for Arracknomon to get closer, and then he sent a shockwave through the ground, and it knocked Arracknomon into the air. He then blasted him with a powerful blast of energy.

This propelled Arracknomon across the arena, and into the wall again with crushing power. Arracknomon got up very slowly, and he gave a glance toward Shadowmaster, who was smileing in success.

(Shadowmaster) "Did you actually think that an assassin could destroy me? Ha. Pitiful. Certainly your master taught you far better."

With this prompting remark, Arracknomon zoomed up right in front of Shadowmaster, and began a melee duel. They were both incredibley fast, each blocking the other's attacks, and not gaining a scratch. The sound of clanging weapons was the only sound to be heard, and each attack was getting louder, meaning that more force was being put behind every attack.

Eventually, there was a pause in the fight when Shadowmaster executed a three hundered sixty degree spin kick to Arracknomon's face. It sent him to the ground for a second, and Shadowmaster was about to crush his skull with his staff, when Arracknomon threw his sword at Shadowmaster's head. Shadowmaster blocked the sword with an upward block, and spept the ground with his staff. Arracknomon did a front flip over the staff, and was able to land right where his sword had fallen. He picked it up, and again threw it at Shadowmaster, who this time caught it, and threw it back at him.

It impailed Arracknomon's shoulder, and sent him stumbleing backward. He then grabbed the hilt of the blade, and yanked it out of his body with a dark groan. When he pulled it out, black blood came pooring out of his wound. He clutched at the blade, and a black crystaline substance went up it. He once again threw it at Shadowmaster, who this time new better than to catch it, so he blocked it.

When his blade made contact with the crystaline protodermis, Arracknomon's blade expoded with a powerful blast. Shadowmaster flew to the other side of the arena, and slammed into the floor. He looked up at Arracknomon with a quisical look on his face; What element was it that he had just used?

However, he did not have the time to ponder this question, and so he took his staff, and raised it toward Arracknomon. However, when he looked at his staff, he saw some of that crystal was imbeaded into its shaft. The crystal somehow began to move up the shaft, and onto his hand, and then suddenly, it exploded again! It shattered his staff, and his hand, and it also imbeaded more crystal into his body.

Shadowmaster looked up; It was all over his chest, neck, arms, and legs. He then looked and saw that Arracknomon was gone, as his job of "provoking" Shadowmaster had succeeded, and it was about to go the extra mile.

Suddenly, all of the crystal on Shadowmaster's body, began to connect together, forming a black shell around him, and then, exploding. All that could be heard was a loud and painful scream, as a stuation like that was far from painless.

Shadowmaster slowly got up. He looked at his body; His armor was almost completely gone, his hand was gone, he was bleeding, and his weapon was shattered. He looked around and saw that his entire base of operations, and all of his tablets that lined the wall, were both completely destroyed. He was so angry, that he considered killing everyone on the island for such an outrage, but then he decided no. This was between him and Serrakaan, and he was going to make sure he knew that his assassins "Provoked" him quite enough. For after Shadowmaster repaired his armor, he was going to make a small visit to Destral.

Chapter 13 ~ The Dark Lord of Morrion.[]

Serrakaan sat in his chambers and waited. He had just recieved the report of his assassin's success in aggrivateing Shadowmaster, and Serrakaan had no doubt that Shadowmaster would visit him that night. Serrakaan had made no preperations, no traps, just him and Shadowmaster.

He was still pondering however why Shadowmaster had business here, in this world of all places. He considered it a remarkable coincidence that they would both arrive in the exact same place. However, he just assumed that Shadowmaster was takeing refuge here, as he had tried to do the same thing many years ago, which instigated their last meeting. But that was very long ago, and many things had changed since then. Serrakaan was also irritated that Sadowmaster made petty, vailed threats to expose him for what he really was. This did not sit well with him, as Shadowmaster was not one to make idle threats.

Just as Serrakaan was wondering these things, he felt the presence of someone else in his chambers, and he knew exactly who it was. He opened his eyes as he sat on his thrown, and he looked over into a darkened corner. Out of it approached a being, who was relatively the same in stature, and in hight as he. He stood in front of Serrakaan, and began to make conversation.

(Arracknomon) "I suppose you are satisfied with the success of our mission?"

(Serrakaan) "Indeed."

(Arracknomon) "My spies tell me he is on his way. Will you require assistance?"

(Serrakaan) "No. Leave him to me. I will deal with him myself."

(Arracknomon) "Very well. However, his appearance here is not the reason for my arrival. He, sent me. He wants to know what is prolonging your return."

(Serrakaan) "The object of my attention has been well obscurred. My time here will be far longer than I had beforehand presumed."

(Arracknomon) "Very well. Your assistance would be appreciated, however it is nothig that cannot be handled by other means."

(Serrakaan) "If it is so pertinant, why is it that He is not willing to give His personal attention to it?"

(Arracknomon) "It seems that The Dark Lord has been occupying Him tremendosely. He has doubled his efforts to achieve control, and our Master is in the process of dealing with this disturbance. For now we have successfully infiltrated The Dark Lords personal guard, and it is only a matter of time before we exercise our restraints over him. However in the present time, certain things must be established before we deliver a crippleing problem to his plan for supremecy."

Serrakaan paused for a moment, and then began to speak once again.

(Serrakaan) "He is here. Go. Tell The Master of my problematic situation here. No doubt he will understand the delay."

Arracknomon obeyed without another word, and he walked away into the shadows. He waited for about half an hour, just sitting there, waiting for the moment that his long forgotten enemy would show himself.

Eventually, the door to his throne room opened, and a being walked in with a cloak around his shoulders. He was tall, and his very presence inspired evil. He looked as though he was frustrated, and at the same time pleased to see Serrakaan. He walked forward and stopped a dozen feet in front of him. He looked at Serrakaan with a sense of superiority, and then he began to speak.

(Shadowmaster) "It seems that your current security force was just as efficient as mine."

He held out the head of a rakshi, and then pulled out the Kraata. He threw it to the floor, and at first it went slivering quickly over to Serrakaan, however, when it got closer, it stopped, and hissed at him. It suddenly exploded in a small splash of blood at the raise of one of Serrakaan's fingers. Shadowmaster smiled, and began speaking again.

(Shadowmaster) "Ironic. A simple beast can detect where something is amiss, whereas the Makuta are completely obliviouse to your disguise. But now, now it is over. Your little group of Assassins failed to kill me, as you knew they would, and now you have my full attention. A very foolish thing on your part to attempt to obtain. However, this meeting has prompted me to ask myself why? Why would you strive to annoy me at the risk of your mission. Is it because you believe that you now have the power to defeat me? True. When first I saw you, I realized that your power had grown stronger with your conversion to darkness. It is obviouse that you still hold a grudge from so long ago. Why is that? Do I remind you of her? How you failed to protect her?"

As he taunted Serrakaan, he could see two red lights slowly illuminate under the hood in anger.

(Shadowmaster) "I can feel your anger. It gives you purpose, fuels your hatred. However, you seem hesitant. I don't quite understand your reluctance to completely conform. Does she hold you to the hope of a life you once had? You are but a mere Shadow of your former self, void of the mercy, and the compassion. Do you really expect that you can go back to being a guardian of light after all you have done? There is no going back. Why even bother when the power is clearly in favor of darkness."

Shadowmaster saw Serrakaan squeezing the arms of his throne, and he saw the stone crack under the pressure of his anger.

(Shadowmaster) "What would a battle between you and I accomplish. If there are witnesses, your plan would be extinguished, and I would need to search for another place to reside. What business does Darkness have against Darkness? Evil against Evil? If you and I were to put asside the past, and see that Evil binds us to eachother, what goal could not be accomplished with our power? What hope would even the God beings have if all that is evil were to unite?"

After this was said, there was a long pause, and nothing was said. Shadowmaster believed that he had successfully tamed Serrakaan into believing his point of view, until Serrakaan spoke on sentence. One sentence sent everything that Shadowmaster had said into a void.

(Serrakaan) "There are no witnesses down here."

Suddenly Serrakaan leapt up and slammed Shadowmaster out of the door behind him with a blast of air, and into a large under ground courtyard. Shadowmaster got up and dusted the stone from his shoulders, and he looked forward at Serrakaan, who was slowly approaching. As he approached, the door behind him shut, and he stopped. Shadowmaster said one thing.

(Shadowmaster) "So be it."

Serrakaan slowly raised his hands and lowerd himself into a defensive position, as did Shadowmaster. There was a moment of silence, as they looked into eachother's eyes, and for a while, just stood their, trying to predict the other's movements. Finally, Serrakaan made a move, and Shadowmaster complied. Serrakaan began the fight with his deadliest abilities, and Shadowmaster had the burden of trying to counteract them.

He began the fight with a quickly charged bolt of black lightning, one of the only things that could penetrate Shadowmaster's armor. Shadowmaster knew that he had to somehow disrupt the conduit, as if it came into contact with matter, it would explode, and he did not prefer that matter to be his armor.

In a quick minded action, Shadowmaster threw his staff at the bolt of lightning only a fraction of a second after it left Serrakaan's hands. The staff made contact with the lightning before it could hit Shadowmaster, and it exploded right in between Serrakaan and himself. The explosion sent both combatants flying into opposite ends of the courtyard and makeing commets in the opposite walls.

They both got up at the same time, and produced melee weapons. They instantly met in the middle of the courtyard in a fury of blows with their swords. Serrakaan was even faster than Arracknomon, and Shadowmaster had to produce more effort to keep up with him.

Their melee fight was extrordinary. There was a fast combination of flips, kicks, slices, and clangs. They were masterful to watch, and it seemed more like a dance than actual combat. They were going back and forth, in perfect harmony with the other. It was not like the gruesome or uncoordinated fights that are so often seen in places like arenas, but it was graceful, and deadly. Each combatant had the perfect timing to either strike or counter. It looked as if they had fought and coordinated every move dozens of times, when they had only ever fought once before.

This perfect combat form went on for three minutes, and there was not the slightest change in pace. Thefight was going to last forever if they kept this up. Neither one was tireing, and neither one had been hit or even scratched.

Eventually however, Shadowmaster grew bored with this constant fray of attcks, and so in perfect timeing, he was able to land a jump turning kick on Serrakaan, that knocked him a few yards away. However, right as Serrakaan landed, he released a blast of air from his hands and sent Shadowmaster, who was still in the air, flipping away. Shadowamster landed on his feet and left hand, with a blade in his right. Serrakaan wasted no time in keeping up his assault. He threw his sword at Shadowmaster, and it hit him in the shoulder as it passed by, and it actually cut his armor! Shadowmaster was surprised at this, as hardly any blades could even scrach his armor, much less penetrate it!

Serrakaan however was not unnarmed as it at first seemed for a moment. He quickly produced two chains with a very sharp blade on each end. Shadowmaster quickly assumed that if one of Serrakaan's blades could slice through his armor, so could the rest of them.

He quickly swung both right at Shadowmaster, one chain was aimed for his legs, and the other was aimed for his head in a scissor like motion. Shadowmaster leapt into the air, with his head forward, and his feet behind him so that his body was parrallel to the floor. Each blade barely missed him, and as he landed on his left hand and foot, he had to leap into the air once again, as Serrakaan quickly swiped for his hand and foot. Shadowmaster executed a perfect back flip, and as his body was curled in the middle of the flip, one of Serrakaan's blades barley scratched Shadowmaster's back. If it had been only a foot closer, Shadowmaster would have been in two peices.

Shadowmaster landed on his feet this time, and he had to lean back in a very quick back bend to avoid decapitation. He then balanced on his hands, and lifted his feet off the floor, so Serrakaan's blades would miss his feet, and they did, but with each strike, Shadowmaster was being limited of his options on where to move, as Serrakaan was making his strikes quicker, and less further apart. Shadowmaster had to increase in speed along with the chains, or else he would be a gonner.

He continued to dodge all of Serrakaan's attacks with a flurry of flips and spins, however he sustained a few more minor scratches from Serrakaan, that were not deep enough to bring blood, but could have been fatal if they were any closer.

Eventually, Shadowmaster took and advatage in the fight, and slashed his sword accross both chains, and cut the blades off of both ends. He then grabbed one of the chains with his hand, and was going to pull Serrakaan toward him to land a hit on him, but Serrakaan sent a jolt of electricity up the chain, and it zapped Shadowmaster strongly enough to make him let go, and stumble backwards. His hand was vibrating, and he almost could not feel it.

Serrakaan then threw the chains almost as if they were boomarrangs at Shadowmaster, and they both coiled around him, and continuousley electrocuted him. After about five seconds though, Shadowmaster broke through the chains and blasted the elctricity he had absorbed back at Serrakaan. I hit Serrakaan in the shoulder, and it was strong enough to make him fall to his knees.

Shadowmaster then teleported to the oposite end of the courtyard and then spawned several clones of himself, and sent them onto Serrakaan. Serrakaan however responded with an element that Shadowmaster was not familiar with, white fire. This particular fire was so hot, that it could burn through stone. He shot a large wall of it at two of the fake Shadowmasters incinerating them, and then he threw one of his thowing doublebladed swords at the third one, decapitating it. All of the Shadowmaster's dissappeared when they died, and the real Shadowmaster just stood their in surprise of Serrakaan's quick dissposal of his coppies.

The real Shadowmaster then shot a bolt of darkness at Serrakaan, however Serrakaan dodged with speed that was faster than Arracknomon. When Serrakaan reappeared, he shot a condensed blast of lightning, that was a combination of six bolts of lightning that was white in color. It barely missed Shadowmaster, but unlike black lightning, this lightning energy did not explode, and was rather focused on one spot, as it seered a hole in the wall. Shadowmaster responded with a powerful burst of white hot energy, (not lightning) that hit Serrakaan in the shoulder, and knocked him backward.

Serrakaan stood up and pounded the ground with his fist, and a shockwave went out around him and knocked Shadowmaster to the floor. Serrakaan then blasted another bolt of white lightning. It hit Shadowmaster head on, and emediately felt some very painful effects. This lightning was very strange, because as soon as it hit him, he felt his strength almost completely leave him, and the pain was also none the less excrusciating. If it were anyone besides Shadowmaster had recieved this type of blast, it is very doubtful that they would have survived.

Shadowmaster could barely get up, as he was in alot of pain. Serrakaan however did not hesitate to bombard him with lightning grenades, that exploded on impact. Shadowmaster was flung back to the other side of the room, and he could barely stand, however, after a couple of seconds, he stood up, and looked at Serrakaan.

(Shadowmaster) "You have improved since last we met. You seem to have fully embraced your newest abilities. However, I have held back long enough. It is time to see how powerful you really are."

Suddenly, a vortex of Shadow went up around Shadowmaster, and for a second, nothing happened. Then suddenly, Shadowmaster emerged, and he was quite different. He was alot taller, about even in hight with Serrakaan, if not a little taller. He had alot thicker armor, and he had large wings. He slowly approached Serrakaan, who just stood there and watched him. He seemed unimpressed by this, however, he showed hesitation to attack emediately.

(Shadowmaster) "Not even you can drive me away this time."

Suddenly, he swiped his hand right at Serrakaan, who zoomed across the room, and away from Shadowmaster. He then unleashed another barrage of lightning grenades, and they all hit Shadowmaster square in the chest. After the electicity cleared, he was just standing there. He then casually swept the dust from his shoulders, and said.

(Shadowmaster) "Is that the best you can do?"

Shadowmaster emediately responded with a huge blast of seering hot energy, that hit Serrakaan head on, and plastered him all over the wall. Serrakaan fell to the floor, and he almost could not get up. Shdowmaster walked over to Serrakaan, and grabbed him by the back of the neck. He flung Serrakaan to the floor, and stomped his head into the ground, he then lifted him from the floor, and threw him across the room. Serrakaan landed with a loud boom, and he barely got up. Shadowmaster than persisted to shoot him all the way to the other side of the room with another cumbustive blast of energy. It hit Serrakaan square in the chest, and he was slammed into the far wall, cracking it.

Serrakaan slowly rose, and Shadowmaster casually walked toward him. He smiled, and felt comfortable that Serrakaan did not have much more to offer to the fight. He grabbed Serrakaan by the throat, and lifted him up.

(Shadowmaster) "Ha. I assumed that you would have been more experienced, but then again, you have a reputation to losing to me."

After he said this though, he realized that he had been duped, as Serrakaan had something in his hand. It was a dagger, made of Shadow Crystal. Serrakaan jabbed it into Shadowmaster's chest, and left it there. He then kicked himself out of Shadowmaster's grip, and blasted him away with a blast of air. When Shadowmaster recovered, the dagger in his chest exploded in a violent explosion. His armor had a big scratch on it, but it was not severe enough to stop him.

(Shadowmaster) "It will take alot more than that to stop me."

In response to this, Serrakaan knelt down and pounded the ground once with his fist, and then, he raised his hand from the ground, and four pillars as tall as him came up from the floor, and they were completely made of Shadow Crystal. Shadowmaster frowned at this. "This should be interesting." He thought.

Serrakaan emediately sent three of them flying towards Shadowmaster. Shadowmaster instantly dodged the first one, and then curved his body with the second one. However, the third one barely nicked him, and it caused him alot of pain. The nick in the crystal began to cover his side where it had scratched him, and to his shock, it started to cover his body!! In an act of despiration, he formed a large amount of energy in his body, and exploded it outward. The explosion freed him from the crystaline prison, and the shards of crystal flew everywhere. He was about to turn his attention to Serrakaan when he saw the last pillar of Shadow Crystal headed strait for him. It broad sided him, and it pinned him to the far wall, and with the collision, it exploded violently.

After about ten seconds of continuouse explosions, the smoke cleared, and Shadowmaster was gone. Serrakaan looked around, when suddenly, a blade came through his chest from behind. The blade was then torn out, and Serrakaan fell to his knees. Shadowmaster walked around him and blasted him into the throne room, tearing down the stone doors in the prossess. He then positioned himself near Serrakaan, and then pointed his hand towards him. He then let loose a constant stream of black and white energy, that completely covered Serrakaan, as it ground him into the floor like a drill. He kept the energy running for about a whole twenty Seconds, as it not only drained Serrakaan's energy, it also caused a massive amount of pain.

After those twenty seconds, he withdrew his barrage, and just looked at Serrakaan's crumpled body, in a heap on the floor. He was still alive, but barely. As Shadowmaster looked upon him, he was surprised at his sheer will over his body. That constant bolt of energy would have been enough to kill any other being, and just by the fact that Serrakaan had not turned into ashes was impressive.

After a minute, Serrakaan shot up like a bolt of lightning and jabbed his clawed thumbs into Shadowmaster's eyes, causing blood to squirt out, along with a pained scream from Shadowmaster. Shadowmaster stumbled backward, and Serrakaan took advantage of his temporary distraction, and used a signiture move of his, the move that gave him the name, the Blood Summoner.

He flicked his wrist, and clenched his fist, and suddenly, blood just exploded from Shadowmaster's mouth, eyes, and chest. It all splattered onto the floor, and on Serrakaan. Shadowmaster could not die of blood loss, but it severely hurt, and was also blinding.

Serrakaan then proceeded to kick Shadowmaster oout of the room with a solid side kick. Shadowmaster stumbled out of the room, holding his eyes, attempting to heal the excessive damage. He wiped away the blood, and squinted his eyes, and what he saw was not good. He saw Serrakaan weilding his massive spiked flail, and it was headed right at Shadowmaster!

It hit Shadowmaster so hard, that it shattered his chest armor, and sent him crashing to the floor. Serrakaan swung it a couple of times over his head, and was about to bring it slamming down on Shadowmaster's head, however, Shadowmaster stopped it's trojectory with Magnetizm, and then pushed it back at Serrakaan. Serrakaan dodged the flail, and let go of the chain, as the missive spike was now a flying projectile. The flail slammed though a wall, and into Serrakaan's armory, utterly obliterating one of his armors on display.

Serrakaan turned and looked at Shadowmaster, who had completely healed from his eye injuries, and was just standing casually a few yards in front of him. Serrakaan then summoned a bolt of black lightning to his hand, and he was prepared to blast it at Shadowmaster, however Shadowmaster at the last second raised his hand.

(Shadowmaster) "Wait."

Serrakaan withdrew the lightning in his palm, and listened to what Shadowmaster had to say.

(Shadowmaster) "How long are you prepared to go through this Serrakaan? What point is there to this fight? You know you cannot kill me, and it has become clear to me that killing you is not so easily accomplished either. So what is your plan? To continue to fight me until we are both just conformed to ashes? We could both go on for days, weeks even, and nothing would come of either of our efforts. I am offering you a chance at peace, before this fight gets out of hand. You have impressed me this time around, but even you know that if we were to continue, we could not keep this battle in the confines of this cave. However, if you wish to prove something, or if you are just as foolish as you were last we met, I would suggest you stand down, otherwise I will have to be a little bit more, irresponsible with my powers. And I do not believe you are one for colateral damage. So choose now Serrakaan. What decision is most wise? Or do your emotions get in the way of your decisions?"

Serrakaan stood there, and for a moment, he did nothing. After a moment, he turned and sat on his throne. He looked at Shadowmaster, and telepathically began to speak.

(Serrakaan) "I accept your terms. However I have terms of my own. You have caused unnescessary attention with the Brotherhood for your violent nature. I do not want to be sent out because of something you did ever again, and if I am, I will also be less restrained with my abilities. I entreat you to leave this world, and take refuge elswhere. If you do or do not is your own choice, but what business do you have disrupting my affairs when they do not involve you? Those are my demands."

Shadowmaster stood there and frowned. He did not like the idea of leaving the Mata Nui robot, but he also did not want to make a worse enemy out of Serrakaan.

(Shadowmaster) "Very well. I am agreeable to your terms."

Shadowmaster turned and walked away, however, after a few steps, he stopped and siad to Serrakaan.

(Shadowmaster) "'Before I leave, I must ask you a question. What do you plan to do once you have achieved your goal? Before you become too obsessed with your hunt for redemption with the God beings, I ask you to ponder if it is worth losing the powers you have recieved. You have been given these extrordinary abilities, and I hate to see them wasted for the approval of someone who cast you away like a dirty rag. Why look for redemption, when domination is not too far out of reality? Consider this Serrakaan. I now must return to more important matters, however I only hope that when next we meet, our terms may have changed."

Suddenly, Shadowmaster vanished; Serrakaan looked on the floor, and saw that one of his staffs had been left behind. He telekinetically drew it to his hand and looked at it. He could not help but think of what Shadowmaster had said. Domination over Redemption. This little seed planted by Shadowmaster may be even more promising than his orignial plan for supremecy. Serrakaan could now only wonder, how far out of reality was the idea of Domination?

Chapter 14 ~ A Meeting of the Minds.[]

On the Northern Continent, outside a large racing stadium.

Ra and several other Matoran were waiting their turn to get inside the stadium. It was massive, and it held on the inside one of the largest race tracks in history. Ra was not so much interested in the races as he was the main participant; The Toa that Terreskah and Telnor told him about.

He was very curious if he could actaully meet her, but Jarodin told him that the stadium would be so packed, that there was absolutely no chance of that happening.

He was in line with Terreskah, Telnor, and Jarodin, and it was almost their turn to enter. He did not have a ticket, but he was hoping that his status as a Toa (Even though he was not really) might land him an acception. The three Matoran went inside, and just as he was about to enter, he was stopped by one of the Matoran who sat at the ticket booth.

(Matoran) "Ticket please."

(Ra) "Sorry, I don't have one. But perhapse some space could be made for a Toa?"

He stood proud and tall, hopeing that his appearance would be enough to impress, but it turns out it wasn't.

(Matoran) "Do you know how often I get that. You must be the third "Toa" to ask me that today, even though you are more well disguised than the other Matoran were."

She pointed over to a couple of Matoran leaving with their heads down. They were wearing hight boostin armor with fake Kanohi and weapons. Very crude and unprofetional, yet funny at the same time. He turned to her, and he was about to explain himself further, but she just waved her hand in his face and told him to get lost. Telnor waved from inside and said.

(Telnor) "We'll be out after the race is over. There is a big screen on the other side of the stadium for you to just watch from outside if you want."

Ra guessed that this was his only option, so he began his walk to the other side of the stadium, which would take about thirty minutes. He was about halfway there when he looked and saw something interesting. It was a large pillar the helped suspend an upper balconi into the stadium from one of the V.I.P. boxes.

Ra decided that perhapse it was time to use his agility for maybe a little once in a lifetime mishief. He ran toward the pillar, leapt onto it and ran up it, did a back flip and grabbed the railing of the walkway, and let his momentum carry him over the railing and onto the balconi. He snuck inside the V.I.P. area, and it was thus far empty, as the races had not started yet. However, when he looked to the inside of the stadium, it was massive! The races not only went on inside of the stadium, but they also went out of the stadium and into the mountains and around some beautiful scenery via access tunnels.

He looked around for somewhere to take an empty seat without anyone noticing, but unfortunately, every single seat was taken. He then looked up, and suspended in the middle of the stadium by several support beams, was a large screen that showed what took place in the race outside the stadium in the mountains. He then looked at the support beam, and it was anchored right next to the box sweet. He then got an idea for the best seat in the house, and a mischevious grinn went up his lips. He leapt onto the support beam, and began to climb it, all the way to the top of the screen!! As he was climbing however, the announcer began to introduce the contestants.

(Announcer) "Welcome all to the Northern Sentenial Races!!!!!! Today is going to be a very memorable one for each and every one of you, as the contestants have come from far and wide to perform their unique talents that have graced this track every year for the past decade!!!!!!!!"

As he yelled this into his microphone, the screen's speakers began to vibrate and shake the supports. Ra had a difficult time holding on every time he spoke up like that, and so he had to be extra careful. The climb kept getting harder and harder, as each contestant was introduced, and the announcer yelled all the more. All of the contestants lined themselves up in front of a red dome like platfrom connected to the tracks, and when each of them walked toward it, the dome would slide down and reveal their racing vehicle. Some of them were beat up from past events, and others looked as if they were just purchased.

Ra had not recognized the Toa anywhere when the announcer informed the crowd that the last contestant had been introduced. All of the Matoran booed and yelled in protest, and the announcer got a large grinn on his face.

(Announcer) "Oh wait!! I have one more to introduce. From the grand island known as Metru Nui comes last years champion. She has graced this track for an entire decade, and she's won seven of all ten races. She rides swiftly in her sleek vehicle, with grace as she rounds every corner. She has given up her life for the sport. She has thousands of deticated fans!!!!!!"

As he said this, about three fourths of the stadium cheered and screamed in excitment.

(Announcer) "I now have the privelige of introducing one of the worlds most amazing racers!! The one and only.............KELVAR!!!!!!!!"

The croud went absolutely balistic, and the screen shook with the vibrations, nearly knocking Ra off. He was now almost dangling from the beam, however the crown was so focused on Kelvar, they hardly noticed him.

She came walking out, in beautiful sleek silver armor. Her hair blew in the wind as she gracfully approached her dome. When the dome opened, a beautiful silver car like vehicle lay under it. Ra had no doubt in his mind that this was the Toa, and he now inclined more-so than ever to make her acquaintance after he saw just how beautiful she was.

She got into her car, and all of the contestants drove onto the track. They all lined up and waited for the ten second countdown. As each second went by, the Announcer's voice got louder, and louder, and Ra could barly hang on. However, when the final second came to a close, the screen shook so wildly the Ra lost his grip, and fell sixty feet to the track!!!

He hit the track hard, and he was groaning in pain from his sore back. He heard the engines start, and he realized that he was about to become Toa paste if he did not get off the track. He stood up and limped to the edge of the track, but it was too late, one of the cars nearly ran him over, going who knows how fast. He stumbled into the middle of the track, and he nearly got run over three more times. He was laying on the ground when he saw another pair of headlights comeing around the ridge. He knew that he was about to get it, and there was nothing he could do. The only thing he did was shut his eyes, so he could not see it coming.

He heard the engines getting closer and closer, when suddenly he felt a hand grab him by the shoulder, and yank him into one of the cars. He was dropped into a passenger seat, and he opened his eyes. The interior of this car was red velvet, and the outside...... was silver? He realized whose car he was in just then, and then he slowly looked over to the drivers side. It was Kelvar behind the wheel.

(Kelvar) "Today's your lucky day pall. It's not every damsel in destress that gets to ride with me in a race ya know."

Ra was speechless. She was absolutely beautiful, and her hair smelled like a summer day on a beach as it waved across his face durring a turn. He said nothing, until she responded to his silence.

(Kelvar) "I am Kelvar by the way."

She extended her hand and shook his. He still did not say anything. She smiled at him.

(Kelvar) "Umm stranger. What's your name?"

(Ra) "Raaaaaa....... Umm. Ra. Ra's my..... My name is Ra."

(Kelvar) "It's a pleasure to meet you Ra. But I think you may have caught me at a bad time, so perhapse we can postpone a conversation until after the race."

Ra was still not saying anything, but he was inclined to look at Kelvar, right until they nearly hit another competitor, and so he forced his attention to the road. She was a perfect driver, and she had perfect luck when it came to turns, as she liked to skidd the car. She nearly hit another car again, when a suddenly she threw something out the window, and it exploded in a blue energy. It stopped one of the cars behind her, and it made another crash. Ra looked at her with an open mouth.

(Ra) "Isn't that cheating?!"

(Kelvar) "Ha! Obviousley you have not been to one of these races before."

Suddenly he felt another impact, as a car tried to slam her off the road. They were not hooked from side to side, and she could not get free. Ra was very surprised, as this was apparently a fight to the death type race.

They were quickly headed for a tunnel, and it was not wide enough to fit both cars side by side. One of them would broadside the wall, and one would go strait into the tunnel. They were trying to shove eachother with everything their cars had. He was turning as hard as he could, trying to get her to crash into the wall up ahead. She could not get him off, until Ra decided to play into the game a little bit.

He flashed a large light into one of his mirrors right when he looked at it, and it blinded him. It was then Kelvar took control of the road, and slammed him into the wall and she zoomed into the tunnel. She smiled at him, and winked at him. He felt himslef almost blush at this, but he turned his face to the road and tried to be more serious.

They just exited the tunnel, and they were in the mountain pass, and she was third place. They were going approximately eighty nine miles an hour. The next car was right in front of them, and she suddenly raised her hand, and a lightning strike came out of the sky, and sweapt the guy off the road. She was now in second. Ra looked at her and said.

(Ra) "You are a Toa of lightning?"

She just ignored this and stayed on the road. She was almost behind the next car when a turret came out of the back of the vehicle, and blasted the passenger side of the car. One of the wheels nearly came off, and the car was not in good shape.

(Kelvar) "Time for plan B."

She put on a helmet, and tossed one to Ra. She then pushed a button on the dash, and Ra's seat scooted behind her's. Suddenly, the hood of her car came off, and the other half of the car split off and crashed into the car behind her. She was now driving a motorcycle. Ra was holding onto the back of the seat, and squeezing the cycle with his legs. She turned around and told him.

(Kelvar) "Were almost to the end of the race. Hold on tight!"

(Ra) "It's ok, I am fine, I won't fall."

She turned her head and smiled.

(Kelvar) "Not why I said that."

He flet a little flusterd, but he put his arms around her waist, and she sped up to about one hundered and one miles an hour!

She was slowly approaching the last car, and she was almost right behind it. Suddenly the turret come on again, and began to shoot at them from the car ahead. She swerved back and forth to avoid the fire, and then she got up right beside the car, and she put the motor cycle on auto pilot, and then she leapt up onto his car and landed on his hood. He began to swerve, and Ra was shocked to see her leap into so much danger. She then inserted alot of electricity into the car, and then it's engine blew up! It stopped right then and there, and she flung herslef back onto the motor cycle, however, she landed with her front toward Ra, and her back toward the petals. In a rather awkward position for Ra, yet a little pleasurable, because he now considered himself very well acquainted with her.

She then blasted lightning at the car comeing close behind her, and destroyed it, and then she righted herself into the correct position to drive, and she turned off the auto pilot. She spead then all the way to the finish line, and fireworks went off at her arrival. The crowd went balistic once again, and it was almost deffening. She stopped her vehicle, and she got off, and Ra got off behind her. They both took of their helmets, and she turned to him and said.

(Kelvar) "Thanks partner."

She then gave him a peck on the cheek, and walked over to the main trophy awards stand. She recieved a first place trophy, and after it had been thouroghly documented, she walked off, and locked arms with Ra. She then walked out of the stadium with him, and into her private lounge at the stadium where she waits for the races to start. It was possibley the most lavish place he had seen in the stadium yet.

She put the trophy in a box and carried it out to another car outside the stadium. It was almost the exact same model as the one she raced in. After she put it into the back seat, she turned to him and gave him a small metal plate. It had directions to a beach house on the other side of the Continent.

(Klevar) "It was a vast pleasure to meet you today Ra. Come see me later and we can get to know eachother a little better. See you around."

She then got in the car, and drove off. She quickly dissappeared into a mountain path, but her vehicle could still be heard for about thirty more seconds. He sat on a bench, and looked at the directions to her beach house. It seems that perhapse he would have a date tonight. He could not wait to hear what Jarodin had to say about this.

On the Darkened Island of Destral.

Serrakaan had just repaired all of the damage done to his quarters during his duel with the Shadowmaster. He had just finished cleaning up the mess in his armory, as his flail was flung inside through a wall, destroying one of his armors on display in the process. After he put it back up, he took the staff Shadowmaster had left behind, and placed it in a glass case inside of his trophy room.

After he had done these minor repairs, he then had to attend to his armor. It was incredibley damaged, and it not only had large gaps in it, but it also had a small hole that went all the way through his chest. The legs on his armor were almost completely torn apart, and his arms were scratched and dented from defensive wounds.

He eventually decided that this particular armor gave him a disadvantage in combat due to it's rather large size. He could not so easily dodge massive blasts of energy, and also Shadowmaster had the advantage in the beggining of the fight due to his smaller, more agile size. This led Serrakaan to decide that he needed a new armor, one that was not imposing in size, but was far more effective in combat.

With his decision made, he went to his armory, and walked into a smaller room dedicated to just one particular armor. This armor seemed to be the perfect solution for his problem. It was smaller in size and hieght, yet still taller and larger than the average Toa or Skakdi, and the normal size for most Makuta. It was mostly black, with silver armor here and there. It had small spikes all over it in certain places like it's feet and arms, and these spike were coated with a deadly poison at all times, so if in close quarter combat, a simple scratch could take down an opponent. He had a massive claw on the heel of each foot, that had the purpose of not only dismembering foes with a kick, but also to insert into those he had knocked to the floor. He could stabb it into their backs, and yank it out, causing a fatal injury. The armor also had adequate armor, yet not so much as to prohibit movement. The armor was designed for perfect balance, size, speed, and agility; All of which was needed on his various missions. With all of this considered, he shape shifted into ist's exact form, and felt on obvious improvement. The name of the armor was called, "The Assassin's Stalker Armor."

He walked over to a stack of wooden drawers, and pulled out one of his many cloaks, and he draped it over his armor. He looked almost exactly the same as before, accept shorter.

As he was feeling his new armor, and examining its advantages, he received a mental summons from Miserix. Apparently he had a mission in store for him.

In the Throne Room of Destral.

Courtesance had just arrived in the throne room. She as well had just recieved a mental summons, and she waisted no time in her respone. She walked with her black and red cloaks parting before her each stride. Her gate graceful, and almost prideful. She had repaired her armor since her last encounter with an intruder, who had infiltrated the fortress a couple of days before. It was sleek, and it was colored white and red. She also had many hidden throwing knives in the folds of her cloaks, and she kept a sword with her as well. In short, she was well armed at all times.

After a few moments of walking down a few stairways, she entered the throne room, and gave a respectful bow to Miserix. He noded, acknowledging her presence, and then he briefed her on her mission.

(Courtesance) "Why have you requested my presence Miserix? Am I needed elswhere than Destral?"

(Miserix) "Indeed you are my sister. I chose you for this mission for your specific talents as an infiltrator. You see, my spies have inflitrated a mysterious organization know as The Patrons of the Dark. Now we have had dealings with them before, however their recent plans have given me cause for concern. The are headed to Metru Nui in search of a powerful artifact, however that does not concern me. What does, is that they are prone to violence when inturrupted, or provoked, and since the Matoran are not likely to welcome them with open arms, they may use leathal force, which is something I cannot allow. If they give you an impression that they might slaughter a Matoran, kill all of them, accept my informant. You will know it is him when you see him. This my sister, is your mission. Go swiftly, for they have already set their voyage to Metru Nui, and I want you there before their arrival."

(Courtesance) "Very well, I will return whence it is finished."

She once again gave a respectful bow, and gracfully turned to exit the throne room. Right before she did however, she saw Serrakaan enter in another door. She looked at him and saw something was quite different, she actually did not have to look up at him, for he was now the same height as her. This was very strange to her, but Miserix did not seem phased by it.

She left the room, heading for her quarters to get a few things that might help on her mission. It had been quite some time since she had been on a solo mission, and she was looking forward to making each and every one of her victems scream for mercy. However, as usual, she had no intent on giving it.

Back on the Northern Continent.

Ra had just left the Matoran village. Jarodin, Telnor, and Terreskah could not even believe his luck. Before, he did not even know who Kelvar was, and now, he pretty much has a date with her!!!! They could not get over it.

Ra had to almost pay them to stay behind and not follow him, as he was sure that Kelvar did not want people prowling around her private home trying to squeeze her for her attention. He had started his treck to her house about ten minutes after three in the afternoon, and it was now six, and he was almost there.

The directions were very specific, and he had to pay extra attention to where he was going, as it was in some hidden cove near the beach. Finally, he was at the place where the instructions stopped, and all he saw was a control panel sticking out od the trees. He pushed a red button, as it was the sommons to the beach house, even though he could still not even see it.

Suddenly, one of the rocks near the beach clicked and wined, almost as if it were metal. Then suddenly, a large portion of the rock slidd away, and revealed a metal door. The door opened, and out walked Kelvar. She greeted him with a nice soft hand shake, and led him through the metal door.

(Kelvar) "It is nice to see you Ra. I have been looking forward to this for a while."

The door shut behind him, and they were soon in an elevator. It was a little small, but they both fit without a problem. Soon the door opened, and there was a metal and glass structured hallway, with many windows. They were under water!!

(Kelvar) "Sorry about the secrecy, but the Matoran won't leave me alone wherever I go, so I find it refreshing to have a quiet place to think."

(Ra) "I understand. Your house is under water?"

(Kelvar) "No! Ha, Mata Nui no! Only the access tunnel. It is the only way to get to my house, other than swimming or flying."

They walked a little further down the hall, and into another elevator, which took them up. After a few seconds, the door opened, and they walked inside Kelvar's home, and boy was it lavish. Ra was imediately impressed with it's interior. It had beautiful white furniture, and had metal floors with red rugs. There was a living room, and there was a long hallway to the left of the entryway that led to a circular loby with three closed doors. Across from the lving room were two open doors: One led to a kitchen, and one led to a sun room with luxury furniture, each room with large windows facing the beautiful sea. He walked from the elevator into the living room, and she insisted that he sit down and wait for her, and so he did.

She went into another room, most likely where the refreshments were, as he could hear liquid droppin into a glass. He looked arround some more, and noticed alot of glass cases built into the wall here and there, and inside them were very interesting things. In one was a model of her vehicle, in another was a large, and beautiful shield. In another was a large trophy she must have earned in a race. There were several others, with several more trophies, but he did not have the time to examine them, as she had returned with refreshments.

She placed a tray with two sleek glasses on the table in front of the couch they both sat on, and in the glasses was a rare, and very expensive drink that cost hundereds of widgets per bottle. They raised their glasses, and clinked them, and then they took a sip. Afterward, they sat down their glasses, and began to speak.

(Ra) "Thank you for inviting me here. I get the impression you do not have visitors often."

(Kelvar) "Ah.... Visitors, friends, and pretty much anyone else. You are actually the first outsider in months to come here."

(Ra) "Really! Well I am honered. But I have to ask, why do you not have people over more often?"

(Kelvar) "I am a little short on friends. I used to have two really great friends before I left Metru Nui. But now, I only have fans, and all of them want to be my best friend. It is hard to find someone to trust, as fame only brings attention, and I feel like no matter who I meet, they will only like me because I am a good racer, and not because of... well, just me being me."

(Ra) "Why did you leave Metru Nui?"

(Kelvar) " Me and my friends grew apart when I became a Toa. My responsibilities took me and my team elswhere."

(Ra) "What were your friends names?"

(Kelvar) "Oh they were both Great. They were Le Matoran. One's name was Kongu, and the other was Matau. We used to have parties, we would test out vehicles, go chute diving..... Ah I miss them. Good times."

(Ra) "How did you become a Toa?"

(Kelvar) "It is a long story, but I'll give you this jist of it. One day a Turaga came to Metru Nui from another island. He was looking for acceptionally fit, and rather strong Matoran, you know, Toa material. I was chosen, along with five others to go to a meeting with that Turaga, who offered to make us Toa. It was supposed to be a great thing! I thought that we would work along side the Toa team that had already been established in the city, but no. After we recieved out Toa stones, and turned into Toa, we were taken to another island entirley. For a few years we bonded with the Matoran, and with eachother, but it was not the same. My two best friends were not there, and I was still sadened to have left them. That grief never left me."

(Ra) "So how did you become a racer? Did you leave your team?"

(Kelvar) "No...... One day, my Turaga assigned me to oversee a project that the Matoran were building down at the beach. I was just their for moral support, and it was supposed to be a big honor for me to help them. But while I was gone, my village was attacked by Zyglak................ and my team fought but....... they just didn't make it. My Turaga said they just weren't skilled enough, and they just couldn't handle them. So, he decided that I needed to be better prepaired than they were. Over the course of twenty years I was trained by different masters, all in different combat styles and weapons. I was a great warrior to be sure, but that did not bring my team back. After twenty five years of protecting my village on my own, then the turaga decides that new Toa warriors were in order. That I would be their leader, and that they would be my responsibility. That is when I decided enough. He had taken me from my home, made me train every day, reminding me of how my team died from the lack of "skill." He was heartless; didn't care for anyone but himself. So, when he went back to Metru Nui to bring in more potential Toa, I left. I did everything I could to distance myself, going so far as to change my armor color from blue and white to completely silver. I changed my name from Narrah to Kelvar, and I tried my best to hide my skills as a Toa for a long time. For a while, I was just a regular citizen, but then, I got into racing, as it reminded me of when I used to test out vehicles with Matau and Kongu. It gives me such a rush, such a privilage. I love it."

(Ra) "I had no idea! I am so sorry. I personally thought that......

(Kelvar) "That I had left my team to do something fun? Yeah, I get that alot. But now I hope you understand."

(Ra) "I do. And I am very sorry. Thank you for sharing this with me "

(Kelvar) "Don't mention it."

There was a long awkward silence, and they sipped from their glasses a couple more times. And then Ra decided to break the silence.

(Ra) "Where did that shield come from? It is beautiful."

(Kelvar) "One of my trainers gave it to me as a gift. It has the ability to errect a shield in front of you, and pretty much stop anything coming at you. I have not needed to use it in a while, so it pretty much just sits there. Would you like to have it?"

(Ra) "Oh no! I was just reguarding on how it looks."

(Kelvar) "Ok, well what about you? What was your life like before you became a Toa?"

Ra was not very glad to hear this question, as he did not know exactly what to say.

(Ra) "It was boring. Nothing worth speaking of. I did not have many friends, and no team. One day can change alot I guess. But now I have been going from different Islands trying to find a good place that needs my protection. I came here, and so far it's a nice fit."

(Kelvar) "Well I am glad you came here. How about a toast. That life will never change."

(Ra) "Indeed."

They clinked glasses, and then they drank what was left in them. After a few hours of more talking, laughter, jokes. They compaired things they liked, and did not like. The pretty much had a great time. After about four hours of it all, they decided to call it a night. They eventually went outside where he arrived, and she stopped him.

(Kelvar) "Do you need a ride home?"

(Ra) "Nah. I like the walk. Very calming, and beautiful scenery. That, and if my friends see me ride up with you, they would most likely kidnap you."

(Kelvar) "Haha!!! Ok. Well we should do this again some time. I really liked it. Oh, and thanks for not being like everyone else, and actually listening to me. It means alot."

(Ra) "Everyone needs someone like that. And you are more than welcome."

She then embraced him, and then after a couple of seconds, she let him go and smiled.

(Kelvar) "See ya around"

She then walked back into the elevator, and she winked at him as the door closed. Ra then turned and began his long walk back to civilization. This may be the begginning of a great friendship, he thought, as he walked down the long lane that would eventually lead to a place he hoped he would soon be able to call his home.

Chapter 15 ~ The Fear in the Unknown.[]

Sunset had fallen over the massive city of Metru Nui. Most of the Matoran had turned in for the night, while others were still working. This night was hardley at all different than all of the rest, accept a thick fog had come in over the horizon, and the moon was completely full, casting a gloomy light across the landscapes, and buildings.

The Matoran however were not the only ones who were inside the great city, as just a momment ago, several smaller boats left three large vessels out at sea, and were close to docking. Each boat contained ten passengers, and in one of the boats, was the leader of the Patrons of the Dark, along with his two servants, Katronstan, and Zorron. Zorron was sitting quietly, trying to avoid a conversation with Katronstan, while Katronstan was also sitting in silence, filled with anger. He knew that his presence was nessescary for this mission, yet all the same it was unwanted.

After a few minutes, they all docked close to the border of Ga Metru, as close as they could get to the Great Temple without raising an alarm from the Matoran. Alluksonnion got off of the boat, and was surrounded by several guards. Katronstan and Zorron soon followed. There were thirty beings in the party over all, and they were all headed to the bridge that would lead to the Great Temple.

Several guards went before the party, and scanned the area; It was perfectly clear so farr. They were close to the entrance to the bridge, when suddenly, two Ga Matoran Guards ran out from the edges of the bridges gate, and said.

(Ga Metru Guards) "Trespassers are not allowed to enter the Great Temple. I am afraid you are going to have to come with us and report to Turaga..."

Before they could get the last word out, Zorron signaled his men to attack. The leapt out and due to their greater size, dissabled the Matoran quickly. Zorron pulled out a gun and held it to one of the Matoran's heads, and he said.

(Zorron) "You will be very quiet my friend, or else I will personally silence you."

Alluksonnion came forth and pushed Zorron's hand aside.

(Alluksonnion) "No! Do not kill them! I do not want their blood on my hands. Besides, tie them up, and they can't cause us any trouble."

The gurds who had the Matoran restrained, took several ropes, and bound them hand and foot. They then set them aside near the gate of the bridge, and continued forth. The Patrons of the Dark did something right for once, for they did not know that they were being watched from a large building nearby.

One the top of the building, stood a tall being, cloaked in blood red robes. She stared out of the hood that surrounded her head with glowing bright blue eyes. She was just waiting fo the Patrons of the Dark to make a fatal mistake, which they almost did a momment ago, but they spared themselves, at least for a momment. As Courtesance looked down, she noticed that one of the Matoran had nearly freed himself, and was prepairing to assault a soldier from behind. She leapt up and ran at the soldier from behind with a club raised above her head. She was about to strike the soldier, when a gunshot rang out, and she fell crashing to the stone pavement.

Katronstan's gun was smoking, and Alluksonnion gave him an enraged look.

(Alluksonnion) "Do you realize what you just did?!"

(Katronstan) "She was going to harm, perhapse kill one of our soldiers. I had to act out and save him."

Alluksonnion did not have a profitible excuse to yell at Katronstan now, as his argument was taken apart, as the protection of his unit was supposed to be more important than a simple Matoran. As Alluksonnion ordered his soldiers to throw away the body, Courtesance shook her head. Looks like she would have to get her hands dirty after all.

Alluksonnion was emediately paranoid, for he knew what became of beings who saughtered the inoccent. It had hapened to their organization before, however he hoped that one life would simpley go unnoticed. But just in case, he left seven guards behind at the gate, and then the went to cross the bridge into the temple. As they went on, the seven guards walked a little ways into the city, so as to block the path that lead to the gate. They were given explicit orders to not let anyone through. They also took the Matoran captive with them.

As they walked, they finally got to the end of the path, and set the Matoran down. She was wiggleing in distress, and cursing at them in a loud voice. As they tried to silence her, one of the guards came forth and said.

(Guard 1) "She could give out our location, and our cover would be blown. I am afraid we cannot let her live any longer."

The guards were about to argue, when the Guard pointed out a key fact.

(Guard 1) "Do you think that Alluksonnion would be more angry if we let her ruin his mission, or if we put her to death? We have spent alot of time formulating a plan to get here, and I don't think Alluksonnion would appreciate us sacrificing our mission."

The guard then took the Ga Matoran by the arm, and led her into an alley. She began to cry, as she never thought that it would end like this. The alleyway lead, and ended at a canal of water. He pushed her towards the edge, and pointed his gun to her head. She closed her eyes, and heared the klick of the hammer, and then a loud gunshot. She shook, but felt nothing. She then opened her eyes, and saw that his gun was pointed in the air.

She gave him a puzzeled look, as he unbound her, and tightly grabbed her by the shoulder.

(Guard 1) "I want you to jump into the canal, and swim away. If you raise an alarm, or do anything to make me regret spareing your life, you're gone. Got it?"

She shook her head, and then jumped into the canal, and swam as fast as she could. The guard walked out of the alley and into the street, where his comrades were waiting.

(Guard 1) "She is dead, and her body is dissposed of."

(Guard 2) "That was very bold. Are you sure that it was the right thing to do?"

(Guard 3) "Yes, what if we get into trouble?"

(Guard 1) "Don't worry, I have a way out of that."

When he said that, he raised his gun and shot three of the other guards in quick succession!!! The other three were stunned, but one of them opened fire, and shot the traitor in the leg. The traitor fell to the floor, and the three guards approached him, with weapons trained on him. They were about to open fire on him to finish him off, when suddenly one of the guards stopped and gasped for air, as a blade protruded from his chest. He fell forward, and a hooded and cloaked being stood behind him. The other two opened fire, but as soon as they did, the spector dissapeared in a puff of smoke.

It suddenly appeared again and threw a dagger strait into one of their chests, and then teleported right in front of the other on, and telekenetically lifted him off the ground, and threw him into the wall so hard, that his head exploded on impact.

The guard groaned in pain, until the Makuta healed him, and he then knelt before her, and said.

(Guard) "It is done. What is thy bidding, Makuta?"

(Courtesance) "Very good Takadox. You have done well. Miserix requests that you return to Destral, and fill him in on the specifics of the Patron's plans for dominance. Your mission is completed."

Takadox rose and began to walk back to the boats. He was about to get on one, when Courtesance stopped him.

(Courtesance) "Wait for me at the doc until I return. The sea is about to be far from safe. Miserix is making sure that even the soldiers waiting out at sea are dealt with, so it is not recommended that you go out their until that has been accomplished."

(Takadox) "Another Brotherhood operative is out there?"

(Courtesance) "No, a Brotherhood member actually. So you stay as far away from that part of the ocean as possible. Or else you may be killed along side them."

With that said, she left without another word. Takadox could only wonder who she was referring to. As Courtesance vanished into the night, Takadox looked outward toward the sea, and noticed that a large fog had risen up, so much so that he could not see the ships anymore. He peered into the fog, and noticed something moved under the water, causing a small wave that was barely noticeable. In fact, he would not have seen it if he were not looking so intently. It however frightened him, as the only thing he could see about it was that it was big.

He waited and waited. He must have sat their for about ten minutes before he heard something. It was like a small splash, and then he heard a loud scream. Suddenly he heard gunshots out to sea, and then heard alot of water splashing. He then heard a loud roar, that sounded like a mix between a rahi, and the grinding of metal. He then heard more blood curdleing screams, and saw more flashes of guns going off. As he saw the flashes, he realized that the fog was almost so thick, that it was like a cloud, and that they must be completely blinded while in there.

He could hear the captains screaming orders to head bellow deck for cover, or bring out the rpg's. He then saw several rpg's get fired off, and one hit something that was in the midst of the three ships, and the explosion illuminated the area for a momment, and all Takadox could make out was a large head, with white eyes. As the light went away, he heard more yells, and more gunfire. From what he could tell, the weapons were hardly doing any good. Suddenly, and rpg shot was launched right toward him, as it was aimlessly fired. It hit a building behind him, and brought it to the ground. He had to launch himsel to the floor, and get out of the way. He ran out onto the dock to stray from the falling building, however he no expressed a large discomfort of the water.

As the horrific noises of loud roars continued, the fog suddenly exploded with lightning that seemed to be shocking the ships, and the crew. There were several explosions, and then one big explosion, and then, silence.

Takadox peered out into the open water, and saw something pass near the dock, and then go very deep under. It gave him a chill to see it, but he was able to maintain composure. He waited for several more minutes, and then suddenly, something began to come out of the fog! It was big, very big! And as it got closer to the dock, Takadox was relieved that it was only one of the ships pulling into the bay. However he noticed that the ship did not lower it's speed upon getting closer to the dock, and then he realized that it was going to utterly crush the dock. He ran down the dock, and it was shattering behind him as he ran. He made a jump for land, and the boat stopped with a loud skidding noise when it reached the shore.

Takadox got up, and ran over to it via another dock, and as he looked at it, he realized that the odds of anyone being alive on the boat were very slim.

He walked over and emediately saw incredible damage to the ship. There was a huge scratch along side the hull, and it looked as if it were made with a claw of some type. He then proceeded to climb the hull, and onto the ship. Emediately he had to grasp the railing, as he first stepped into a pool of blood, and nearly slipped. The ship was filled with gore, and Takadox nearly vomited at the sight, and the smell.

There were body parts all over the deck, and there were also just bodies that had been scorched by the lightning. He looked around for any evidence of what had done this. Courtesance indicated that a member of the Brotherhood had done this, but he could not imagine any one of them to be large enough to cause so much damage to the hull.

He looked around, moving carfully along to the bridge. He held on to the railing, to be sure he would not slip in the massive amounts of blood that was pooled on deck. He edged closer to the door, and eventually, he opened it, and walked up the steps into the bridge. There was a large hole goudged out of the ceiling, and the hands of the captain were still grasped to the steering wheel.

He looked around and saw on the floor, right below the big gap in the roof, a large tooth about the size of the lower portion of his arm. He picked it up, and emediately dropped it, as it was seering hot! He began to look around a little more, when he saw something move outside! He fell to the floor, and dashed behind the cover of an overturned table, and waited.

Nothing happened for the next three minutes. He held his breath for a long time, trying not to pant from the adrenaline pumping through his body. He let out several long exhales, and he tried to barely open his mouth, so as to not make much noise.

He sat there for what felt like an eternity. He waited and waited, but he never moved. After about five more agonizingly long minutes, he stood up, with his knees shaking. He looked around, and slowly left the bridge. He clenched the rail of the staircase, and slowly walked down it. He eventually reached the bottom, and he was about to climb over the rail and onto the dock, when in a flash, he saw a hooded figure for one split second, and then it was gone! He jumped at this, and he plumetted over the rail, and into the water below, hitting his left arm on the dock.

As he was submerged in the water, he opened his eyes, and saw that he was about twenty feet under the water. He could barely see what was arround him, because it was so dark. A small glimpse of light barely shown through the top of the water, and then under and around him it was all dark. Suddenly, he looked and saw two white eyes light up, and when they did, they somwhat illuminated the surroundings, and what Takadox saw nearly scared him into unconsciousness. It was a large head, with a long nose, and huge teeth. It had several whiskers on each side of it's nose, and it had a long neck, but the rest of it's body was eclpipsed by the darkness.

After about three seconds, Takadox swam to the surface faster than he thought he ever could. He almost dove out of the water, and he was barely able to grasp the edge of the dock, and pull himself up. He climbed up, and ran over to land. He laid down, and closed his eyes, and he slowly let darkness take over his mind and thoughts, and he then blacked out.

Near the Great Temple in Ga-Metru.

Alluksonnion, Zorron, and Katronstan, along with their settlement of guards stopped in front of the large doors that led into the Great Temple. The were looking around for some clue, or some sign that would lead them inside the supposed vault. Alluksonnion was not entirely sure what to look for, but he did know he would need the use of the Staff, and the Dagger in order to access the vault.

They were all looking around; Zorron for some reason was feeling nervouse, as if they were being watched. It turns out he was right. It seemed as though he was not the only one who felt it, as he saw the guards looked a little weary of something, almost as if they new something was ammiss. It was very quiet, and to them, it seemed too quiet.

Alluksonnion looked around. He soon observed that on the outside of the great temple, there were markings that resembled markings on the staff. Alluksonnion could not read them, but he knew they were important. He looked around, and saw that the carvings indicated numbers. He looked at the staff, and saw that on it, the carvings were in a certain order. This made him understand exactly what to do. He extended his hand toward his guards, signalling them to keep in their positions. He then walked toward the first marking, and once his artifact got in close proximity to it, it began to glow!

He took a closer look ar the carving, and once he did, he saw a slot open in it, due to it's close proximity to the artifact. He took his hand and inserted it into the gap, and felt around. He could fell a lever, or a latch, and in his natural curiosity, he pulled it, and then he heard a click in the frame work of the temple. He removed his hand, and then walked over to the next carving. It began to glow as wel, and as expected, a gap opened in it's frame. He did the same thing as before, and pulled a lever inside of it. He heard a clicking, and then a thud. Then he heard something slide open, but it was very distant, so he could not quite see where it was. Suddenly, he felt the ground under him begin to rise, and a pillar rose him up to an elevated position, and then, a walkway slid out from the wall right above the door into the temple, allowing him to access the last carving!

He hopped over to the new walkway, and then repeated the same process one last time when he reached the carving. When he pulled the lever this time, he saw something come out of the top of the temple. It was a mirror, that was positioned in a certain way so as to direct light to a certain object. Suddenly, he saw the moonlight go through the glass, and shine on a certain peice of the bridge. He climbed down to the floor, and ran over to it, guards following him closley behind.

He looked on where the moonlight shown, and saw a small hole, that was only large enough to fit a small stick, let alone a hand. That is when he realized that it was meant for the staff!

He pushed the bottom end of the staff into the hole, and then he twisted it. There was a loud click, and then a thud. Suddenly, in the middle of the bridge, a large hole opened in the stone, and revealed a staircase going down into a dark place.

Alluksonnion went in first; The staircase was only wide enough for everyone to go in single file, and Zorron and Katronstan went in after him. After them, went the guards, all one at a time. As the last one was about to descend the steps however, he was grabbed, and a blade was inserted right into his lungs, so he could not scream. A hooded character dropped his lifless body, and then looked down the steps. She waited until they were out of sight, and then she took the body she had just stabbed, and threw it into the water. Then, her form changed into an exact copy of the soldier, and she walked down the steps behind them.

Alluksonnion was of course the first to reach the bottom, about fifty feet down. It was quite dark, and there was little light comeing in from the full moon. Soon everyone made it down, and they waited for a moment. Alluksonnion did not think to equip the soldiers with torches, but perhapse he did not need one. The last vault was filled with blue light when the artifact was brought inside, but that was not happening. He was a little bit worried, as they could not see hardly anything ahead.

He took a few steps forward when suddenly he felt a hole in front of him with his left foot. He looked and saw it was in the exact shape as the staff! He inserted the staff, and twisted. Suddenly, a golden light went down the shaft of the staff, and then the whole place was lit up with a golden energy that filled carvings on the walls; Carvings that were similar to he ones he had seen in the last vault.

There was a long hallway, and at the end was a massive stone door, that could only be opened with the artifact. He walked over to it, and commanded that his guards go back up and guard around the entrance. They all complied and ran up the stairs to go outside, however, Alluksonnion did not know that he was somewhat being mentally manipulated to ask his guards to leave.

As his guards got to the top of the stairs, the positioned themselves in a circle around the entrance, not knowing the intentions of one of their own. Suddenly, the area was plunged into darkness, and they looked around and could not see anything. Suddenly they could hear the sound of a blade making contact with armor, and the hissing sound of it whirling by their heads. Something was using a sword to kill them! They attempted to shoot at the impending threat, when they tried, their guns would not fire!

At last, there was only one left, and he was quite terrified. He dropped his weapon and ran as fast as he could toward the entrance to the temple. He suddenly errupted from a darkened place and he saw clearly where he was going. He looked back and saw that the area he had just left was covered in darkness, and he could not see anything in it!

However, the last thing he saw, was a silver blade flying out of the smoke, and headed strait for his forhead. He almost let out a scream, but it was over fairly quick. He fell to the floor with a ten inch knife sticking right out from in between his eyes. After his body hit the floor, the darkness subsided, and Courtesance, in her hooded form, stood amongst a large circle of bodies. They were all brutally mutilated, with either decapitation, or with fatal strikes to the chest, or spine.

She sheathed her long, sleek blade, and looked upon her handiwork with a sense of accomplishment. She then uesed her powers over air to sweep the bodies, and bodyparts over the edge of the bridge, and into the water for predators to feast on. After this was done, she slowly walked down the staircase, and looked across the way. Her assault had been so perfectly silent, that the three who were in the vault did not even hear it.

She got to the bottom of the stairs, and saw that they were about to open the door. They however could not see her presence, as she was cloaked to their eyes, effectivly invisible.

Alluksonnion was right in front of the door, and he was only minutes away from gaining the final artifact. He could not fathome the type of power he would possess when he had put all three together, and it was a day he would undoubtedly remember. However he was not counting on Zorron thinking the exact same thing. Zorron thought that Alluksonnion's intentions were foolish, and almost blasphemouse. He intended to use the artifacts for "The Greater Good" instead of placing their organization right where it was, right where he believed it truely belonged. Zorron new that he would be a better leader; That his plans for supremecy would go unchallenged, and undefeated. Alluksonnion was a fool, and a coward to not take what was rightfully theirs, and Zorron was going to make sure he would pay dearly for his treachory to their cause.

Alluksonnion used the staff to unlock the massive doors, and once they opened, the final artifact was in plain sight, elevated on a large platform in the middle of a large circular room. It was impossible to either climb, or descend to the platform, but with the two artifacts he already had, that would not be needed.

He walked forward, and as expected, there was a circular hole in the floor. He placed the staff their, and suddenly steps sprouted from the floor, all the way up to the top of the platform. However, when he removed the staff, the steps fell back into place. This meant he would have to leave the staff in it's place in order to ascend the platform.

So, he left the staff in it's place, and slowly walked up the stairs. Zorron saw this as the perfect opportunity to sieze the staff. Alluksonnion could not possibley be able to strike back at him with only one artifact, as he would have two of them if he gained the staff. (With the Dagger locked to the bottom of the staff)

Alluksonnion was not in arms length of this golden, beautiful sword. It was known to be the artifact with the most offensive capabilities, and once he linked it to the staff, it would be the most powerful weapon imagineable. He picked up the sword, and emediately felt power courseing through him. It was less power than he had when he held the staff, but it was still incredible.

Now that he had the third artifact, Zorron was about to take the staff, but just as he reached for it, he all of the air being sucked out of his lungs. He fell from the pressure, and before he lapsed into unconsciousness, he saw a hooded character appear from seemingly out of nowhere.

Alluksonnion turned around to see both of his liutentants fall to the floor, with a tall being slowly approaching behind them, robed in a blood red cloak. Alluksonnion raised his sword in retaliation, and blasted a massive bolt of golden energy at the being. Courtesance acted with unparraleled speed, and grasped hold of the staff. The steps fell back into place, and suddenly, a golden shield appeared around her, completely dissipating Alluksonnnion's attack. She then reached out her hand, and summoned the sword telekinetically from Alluksonnion. The sword twisted from his hand in a propeller like motion, and severed his hand from his arm. Alluksonnion screamed in pain as his empty hand fell to the ground, and his sword flew to Courtesances open hand.

She grasped it, and after a momment, she placed it on top of the staff. There was a powerful surge that lit the whole room full of golden light. It was so bright that it nearly blinded Courtesance!

However, in an instant, the artifact absorbed all of the light back into it's shaft, and it continued to make the staff glow with a golden energy. Courtesance felt it's power, and she was astonished. She could not believe that a virtually powerless being would dare to possess such power.

Suddenly, the artifact vanished from her hand, as she spirited it away back to a vault on Destral. She then confronted Alluksonnion. He was knelt down in extreme pain, when she blasted him off the platform with a gust of wind, and sent him plumitting to the floor twenty feet below. She walked over to him, her sword drawn, and held steady at his throat. She looked at him for a momment, and as she read his mind, she then realized his true intentions. Seeing as he was relativley innocent of any crime, she felt it was not her duty to kill him, thus, she sheathed her blade, and walked away, leaving all three of them to their own pain, and failure. Her task was finished, and her mission a success.

She came out of the vault and teleported to the docks where she intended to see Takadox. She looked for a momment, and finally saw him hiding behind a few metal barrals. She walked over to him and inquired.

(Courtesance) "Why are you hiding? The mission is over; There is no opposition."

Takadox pointed to the ship that had gone aground only minutes beforehand.

(Takadox) "Something completely obliterated that ship and it's crew! It was huge, I saw it under the water! It was the biggest Rahi I had ever seen!"

Courtesance looked at the ship, and saw what Takadox spoke of. She then mumbled to herself.

(Courtesance) "It is not like him to leave evidence."

She made a motion with her hand, and then there was a sharp metal whine that came from the ship. It began to slowly sink into the ocean, with the bodies and other evidence of foul play along with it.

(Takadox) "Him???? Who did that??!!!! Who could have possibley done all of that??!!!"

(Courtesance) "It is none of your concern as to who did it. Only that his actions gained us a swift victory. It is time we returned to Destral."

(Takadox) "But what about my cover? If I go with you, will they not know I was a spy?"

(Courtesance) "All of their soldiers are dead Takadox, and if you do not wish to follow suit, you will not question me. You mission is over, and so is mine. Any questions?"

(Takadox) "As a matter of fact, I do. What were they doing here?"

(Courtesance) "They were looking for an ancient artifact that was best left undisturbed. It is typical that someone of lesser power would seek such a thing, however the artifact was not made for beings without power to wield it. Remember this well Takadox; Those who are not born with power should not have power."

With that said, she and Takadox were teleported back to Destral. They instantly appeared on the shores of Destral, right in front of an open gate. They walked inside, and they then departed. Courtesance was most likely going to see Miserix on the success of her Mission, which left Takadox currently, well, useless. He did not like how she assumed that those who did not have power were not suited to gain it. This prompted him to wonder if ever he would be granted power. As he let his mind wonder on this, he decided that it was perhapse wiser to stay on the good side of those who had great power, than to attempt to gain it himself. After all, he was now in service of possibley the most powerful organization in history. What more did he hope to gain? Takadox soon traveled to his quarters, hoping that he could gain a little peace for a while, and not be disturbed, for this was the sort of topic that fascinated him. What would it be like, he wondered, to posses the power of a being like Mata Nui, where nobody could look down on you. With this on his mind, he fell asleep, letting his desires of conquest, power, and respect, take over his dreams.

Chapter 16 ~ The Betrayer[]

It had been several weeks since the events in Metru Nui, and things had not truely improved for the Patrons of the Dark. Alluksonnion, Zorron, and Katronstan, all made there way back to their fortress, in the hidden valley on the Southern Continent. Alluksonnion had to get a fully metal prosthetic hand, and he also had to grieve the loss of the artifacts.

He had worked for many years to find them all, and they were all taken from him in an instant. Years of hard work, and he had nothing to show for it. Needless to say however, he planned to get them back. Zorron first said that they could prepair a full scale invasion of Destral, but Alluksonnion quickly shot down the idea as being too violent, and unnesescary. All they really needed was a person, one person to infiltrate the Brotherhood. However, it was not a job that anyone would take lightly, as those who even thought about sneeking into Destral would usually understand that the skills needed to do so were almost impossible to achieve.

However, it was not too long until their search for a Bounty Hunter came up completely dry. They sent messengers to Stelt, Zakaz, Xia, and the Northern Continent, and not one Bounty Hunter was confident enough to even consider it. They even went to the Dark Hunters, and the Shadowed one himself did not wish to send one out on a "Suicide Mission" as he called it.

Alluksonnion realized he needed someone who was virually unafraid of death, and perhapse capture; Someone who was hardened by years of experience, and had a very public reputation. It turns out that in the end, he found someone. But that person was not a Bounty Hunter, but an Assassin. His name was Jeddburgh .

Jeddburgh was surprizingly hard to locate, and difficult to persuade, as he had before had dealings with the Makuta as clients. He was hesitant to lose such a well paying organization, however Alluksonnion's price for retrieving the artifact, was very well worth it. Also, Alluksonnion thought it convenient, and helpful that he already new the Makuta to a certain degree, so they may not be so suspisciouse of him.

However, there seemed to be a problem with Jeddburgh's working method. Apparently, Jeddburgh had a high disdain for killing the innocent, and only murdered those whom he deemed worthy of death, which is what put him on good terms with Miserix in the first place. If there was any involvment in the murder of the innocent, he would never take the job.

However, the reason for him being hired over all other Bounty Hunters, was his amazing ability to plan his kill, or target as it were. He was a master of stealth, and intimidation. He was a proficient knife fighter, and a remarkable shot with any weapon. It was these outstanding qualities that got him the job, and it was these qualities that could save him from the high risk of being caught, and killed.

Alluksonnion had everything planned out in the beggining, but Jeddburgh had his own plan. He had recently recieved a mission from one of the servants of the Brotherhood named Pridak, and he was ready to meet him on Destral. Pridak was going to meet him at the very gate of Destral, and practically walk him into the fortress inharmed. It was then, when he had entered the fortress, that he would find the artifact, and escape with it. Alluksonnion would provide the means of transportation to escape, if Jeddburgh would simpley do the rest.

This was their aggreement; Jeddburgh would access the fortress, and steal the artifact. Then, he would meet Alluksonnion's troops near the outer wall with the prize in hand, and their transport would take both the treasure, and Jeddburgh to saftey. It seemed foolproof, but little did they know that the Makuta were not as unaware of this as they had hoped.

As they spoke, Alluksonnion began to wonder if hireing Jeddburgh was such a good idea.

(Alluksonnion) "My soldiers will meet you at the southern wall. They will be in a very fast watercraft, so board the vessel as soon as you can with the artifact."

(Jeddburgh) "I'm afraid it is not so simple. The Makuta and I are on terms I would rather not sever, and if the mission goes as planned, I will not be seen taking the artifact. So I would be a fool to board that ship. Frankly, it does not really matter to me what you do with your treasure, as long as I get paid for it. I will deliver it to your transport, and then be on my own way. You will send the widgets to my safehouse on Stelt, and we will forget about it. If anyone asks, I did not accept your mission, understand?"

Alluksonnion was rather uncomfortable with this, but he could not tell what exactly made him feel so. If it were his rather lowered, raspy voice, or his authoritative attitude. Alluksonnion was not used to being treated like the fool in need, however, it is what the situation demanded, and he did not wish to say or do anything to sever his connections to Jeddburgh, so he decided to use self control, and comply respectfully.

(Alluksonnion) "As you insist. Is there anything else you prefer to let me know?"

(Jeddburgh) "You don't like me do you? "

(Alluksonnion) "Well, I hope you understand.........."

(Jeddburgh) "I don't need you to like me, or think I am an innocent little citizen. In fact, I don't need your respect either. Your treating me like a prince will not effect my ability to do the mission positivley, or negativley. What helps me on my missions, is the fact that my reputation is always at risk, and if I were to fail any mission out of spite for my handlers, I would not in turn be given these rather impossible tasks. SO reguardless of what you think of me, or what I think of you, I will do this job as I would any other. Understand?"

Alluksonnion was very annoyed by this, and so he responded with a harsh comment.

(Alluksonnion) "Your reputation is not what impressed me, but "Understand" that I have no tolerance of failure. Any failure on your part will result in my dissaproval. In that case then, the only money I would give you is the coin I throw into your cascket when you are buried. Do you understand that?!"

Jeddburgh gave a slight grinn, and then replied.

(Jeddburgh) "I must go now. My meeting with Pridak is scheduled for sundown, and I don't wish to dissapoint. Good day."

Jeddburgh turned, and left the fortress, headed to the docks where his personal watercraft waited for him. He untied the boat at the dock, and then sped off into the ocean, and in only a few hours, he would be on the shores of Destral, awaiting the start of his mission.

On The Northern Continent.

Ra was sitting on a bench, with his hand supporting his chin as he was deep in thought. He was thinking about how in such a short spann of time, he developed such great friends. Most of them Matoran, others were even Toa. He had practically made himself a place to live in a matter of weeks, and he actually feels comfortable saying that it is his home. He lives in a large tower along with many Matoran, and a Turaga. He felt as though thay were family to him. He was even friends with the famouse Kelvar!

All of these friends welcomed him into their lives as if he had known them forever, and it meant the world to him. But even out of all of that, he was troubled. He felt as though he gained all of this just because everyone thought him to be a Toa. He had several times gotten close to revealing otherwise to people like the Turaga, or to Kelvar, but he kept it well hidden. It was almost like he was guilty of not telling them, and that it made him far less of a friend to not even tell it to them. But he felt if he told them now, they would ostrisize him, and he would be cast out. Was it too late to tell them the truth? And even if it was, how would he tell them? How could he explain his powers, his age, and where he came from? They would think him insane! This is what kept him from telling them, but the more he aspired to be like a Toa, the more it distressed him.

These thoughts were instantly put away however, whne Jarodin and Telnor ran by. The looked as though they were in a race, but when they saw him, they stopped to speak with him.

(Ra) "Hey there! Where are you guys going in such a hurry?"

(Jarodin) "We are going to see the Toa!"

(Ra) "Toa? What Toa?"

(Telnor) "Well, there was this Matoran that was nearly killed by a Takea shark the other day, and this person runs on the water, creates this wave that launches the Takea shark away, grabs the Matoran, and brings him ashore! It was amazing!"

(Ra) "She is a Toa of Water I gather. Where is she from?"

(Jarodin) "We don't know, she was kinda shy to speak with all of us yesterday....... But, maybe, she is comfortable around other Toa.You could come and see her!"

(Ra) "What? No, I am sure she needs her space if she was all crowded yesterday. I don't wish to discomfort her."

(Telnor) " Come on. You were able to speak with Kelvar, and not just speak with her, you even touched her! This one should be a breeze. Unless of course you did not do all of those things at "Kelvar's private beach house."

(Ra) "You still don't believe me when I tell you I went to her house do you?"

(Telnor) "Hey, I am open to some proof."

(Ra) "I don't have any I am afraid. But fine, I will go to see her with you. Wait, by see her, do you mean talking to her?"

(Jarodin) "Umm, no. We kinda mean, umm. How should I put this?"

(Ra) "Spying on her?"

(Telnor) "Now when you say it like that, you make it sound like a bad thing."

(Ra) "Why would you want to spy on her? If she is a private person, let her have that."

(Jarodin) "No, she is not that type of person I'm sure! She was talkin to that matoran she saved. Whats his name. Umm.......... Tenecius! Yeah, she was talking to him last night."

(Ra) "Ok. So if she was talking to one Matoran, I am sure she would not mind you spying on her."

(Jarodin) "Hey, if you don't want to come, that is fine with me. She is in the gardens near the beach, so there are plenty of hiding places for all of us."

(Ra) "Fine, I'll go, just to make sure you guys stay out of trouble. I don't want to have to find you in a cell for intrusion."

Jarodin and Telnor gave off a slight grinn, and they left with a sneaky, and excited attitude about them. They were quite ready to see her again. Apparently she made quite the impression.

(Ra) "Wait, before we go, does this Toa have a name?"

(Telnor) "Yes, we heard Tenecius call her Niha."

With that, all three of them walked to the path that would lead to the gardens. However, Ra's intentions were alot different from theirs. He had a new friend to make today.

On Destral.

Benjamin was staring at a tapestry of himself in one of the many hallways of the main fortress. In honor of being a member of the Brotherhood, each Makuta had a tapestry made in their image in certain places of the fortress.

Much that week had been quiet on Destral, and in many other places as well. It seemed that Serrakaan's combined efforts with Courtesance had purged the ambitions of many organizations, and so, they decided to lay low for a little while.

This however had very little effect on Benjarmin, as he was not sent out so much to deal with the disturbances that plagued the world. He was somewhat frustrated by this, as it was an obviouse show of favouratism on Miserix's part to send only Serrakaan and Courtesance on these particularly violent missions. However, they did possess the skills of stealth and efficient quickness where their missions were concerned, where as Benjarmin much prefered to roll in like a tank, and destroy everything in his path, and very loudly mind you. He also liked to draw out the deaths of his own victems, insted of eliminating them so quickly as Serrakaan and Courtesance tend to do.

His innactivity in the outside world however provoked him to spend his time creating things, such as Rahi, and powerful machines. However the Rahi he did create were naturally violent, and quite unfriendly. He saw that they may have a purpose as guardians, or hunters.

However, the majority of his time was spent making new weapons. He was renound in the Brotherhood for having the largest armory in their ranks, as well as the largest defense force. He was responsible for also producing more securety systems in the fortress, since the last infiltration a month ago. So far, he had added alarms, securety turrets, lazers, and blast doors.

However, even he needed a brake from it all, so he decided to make his rounds in the fortress, and somewhat calm his mind. As he was considering returning to his quarters however, one of his sisters approached him and began speaking with him. She was the particular Makuta that had been on his mind, and he was certainly not in the mood to speak with her.

(Courtesance) "Well, it seems that these weeks of peace do not sit with you so well. Hmm. Perhapse you could take up making the tapestries instead of our aids. Sewing seems so well suited for you."

(Benjarmin) "Silence. Keep your tounge clenched behind your teeth. I would rather feed myself to the Zivon than hear words for you."

(Courtesance) "Calm down, it was a simple humorous gesture. It seems we could use some of it more. This innactivity bores me."

(Benjarmin) " Hmm. I never thought I would hear you say that. After all, it seems you are out killing your way to the Brotherhood's success far more often than others. I did not realize you were so close with our leader."

(Courtesance) "Ha. What a foolish retaliation. Insult my realationship with Miserix. The truth is I volunteer my services, rather than wait bitterly to be chosen. Perhapse it would do you good to be more forthcomeing."

(Benjarmin) "Did you come here to insult me, or do you have another intent, because if you do, I would love to hear it."

(Courtesance) "Truth be told, I was going to ask you about something. I hear word of someone coming to infiltrate the fortress, and stealing something, and I wanted to make sure you were aware."

(Benjarmin) "I am. In fact, the theft will occurr tonight. Well, the attempted theft anyway."

(Courtesance) "Ah. So you are going to allow him to pass through?"

(Benjarmin) "I have turned off all securety around the vault area's of the fortress. That is where he will wish to be, and that is where he will be caught."

(Courtesance) "How is it that I was not informed of this plan?"

(Benjarmin) "Perhapse you should be more attentive to the news around the fortress, than the news in the outside world."

(Courtesance) "Huh. Perhapse I will. Has Miserix been informed, or is it just you?"

(Benjarmin) "Yes. Miserix knows of the traitor, and he was quite ashamed to hear of his treachory. Apparently he was well respected by Miserix, and he allowed himself to be bought away from our organization."

(Courtesance) "So he is to be killed? Huh. Now I see why I was not informed. You wanted the honors of dispatching the traitor."

(Benjarmin) "No, Pridak will be responsible for that."

(Courtesance) "But Pridak left a week ago to pursue his childish dreams of conquest in the world. I don't blame him for leaving, being Icarax's aid and all, but the fact remains, he is not here."

(Benjarmin) "The traitor does not know that."

(Courtesance) "Oh, I see where this is going. I assume their will be some deception involved in killing him?"

(Benjarmin) "Deception, yes. But he is not to be killed. He is to be captured and interrogated. I believe Gothmog will be responsible for both. I am sure you are surprized that you or Serrakaan were not chosen for the task?"

(Courtesance) "Well, truth be told, live capture is not my area of expertiese, and Serrakaan could not perform either right now."

(Benjarmin) "And why is that?"

(Courtesance) "Oh. Did you not hear? He took a personal leave of absence to the Northern Continent. Apparently there is someone that he failed to eliminate on a recent mission who still walks the earth, and Serrakaan wanted to tie up the loose end."

(Benjarmin) "That is rather unusual, how is it that he can......."

Benjarmin suddenly recieved a mental summons from Miserix that stopped him in mid sentence. After about twenty seconds, he looked at Courtesance and said.

(Benjarmin) "I am afriad I must cut our conversation short Sister. For our guest, has arrived."

A day ago. On the Northern Continent.

It was a beautiful moon lit sky. The stars were sprinkled across the sky, dotting the ocean's waves with their splendor. It was quiet, and it was peacful. The lights in the Matoran villaiges were dimmed, and all had gone to sleep. Even in the mountains, there was utter quiet, but it did not last long.

In the snow, in the dead of night, there were footprints. It was not unordinary for someone to hike, but at night, the freezing temperatures would be enough to kill a person. Also, there was something odd about the prints. They were a dark red, almost black color. If one followed these prints, they would find a being, commonly called a Pirate, or a smuggler, running for his life in the iced snow. He had encountered something horrible while he was returning to his safe house, and he was doing his best to escape from it. However, he was bleeding, alot, and he was feeling drowsy from so much blood loss, that he fell. However, even in this state, he could not mask his utter terror.

(Smuggler) "Someone, help! Please, help me!!! Help!!! No!! Get away!!! Help!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

As he screamed this into the night, he saw the black shape round the corner, and lay it's sight upon him. He felt a large tingle go down his spine, and he attempted to scream even more, but he felt something come up in his throat. He vomited up a large amount of blood into his hands, and stared in utter horror.

(Smuggler) "Oh Mata Nui!!!!! Someone! Please!! Help!!!!!!! Help........................................."

Suddenly, the black shape stretched out it's hand, and his entire body exploded in a bloddy storm. His organs rolled down a snowy hill, as did his blood, as it soaked into the snow. The black shape took no second look, as though it did not even phase him. He just turned and walked down the hill, and stopped when he got to a large rocky precepice.

He looked down, and could see several villages, as he was quite high in the mountains at this point. He examined each village, and saw that no Toa, nor Toa like being was in sight, or range. He was in search of a being, who posed as a Toa, and had powers over the element of light. He had already searched several villages, and all he came across was an unlawful smuggler trying to harm a Matoran.

Since he did not like the idea of personally searching all of the nearby villages personally, he decided to speed his search. He opened the folds of his cloaks, and suddenly a black smoke substance came from it. The smoke twisted and currled, until it formed three strange creatures. These creatures were identical, and the only three of their kind. They were four legged, and about the size of a Muaka. They were cat like in build, and they bore black armor, however, the armor was difficult to see, as there was a black smoke that covered them from head to toe. However, one could see their glowing yellow eyes peerring through the smoke. The all had tails, and each had long fangs, and sharp claws.

As the sat in the snow, Serrakaan pulled out of his cloak, a damaged sword, that used to belong to Ra, and that Serrakaan had taken in their last encounter. He placed it up to the nose of one of the beasts, and it sniffed up and down the blade, and gathered the scent of it's former owner. The creature than gave a look at Serrakaan, as it's way of saying, "When?"

Serrakaan than pointed his finger out toward the villages, and all three creatures galloped toward them. They had uncanny speed, and Serrakaan new that they would locate his prey soon enough. And once they did, Serrakaan would himself come to tie up his loose end.

The Present Day. On the shores of Destral.

Jeddburgh got off the boat, and began to walk down the dock. He had a feeling suddenly come over him when he first saw Pridak standing there waiting for him. It was almost as if Pridak was over eager to give him this mission. It was discomorting to him, and this made him wonder weather or not things were exactly as they seemed. But as soon as he began to speak with Pridak, his worries were cleansed.

(Pridak) "I was almost under the mind set that you were never going to show."

(Jeddburgh) "I am late Pridak. I had urgent buisiness elswhere. I cannot provide you with all of my time, as buisiness is in high demand."

(Pridak) "I am not concerned with you other business, but only with the business that the Brotherhood provides."

(Jeddburgh) "Indeed. It seems as though you are overeager. Is something wrong?"

(Pridak) "No, not at all. Well, to be honest, business in the outside world has been quite overwhelming. I have just returned from the Southern Continent, and I have alot on my mind for the moment. I tire of the Makuta running my life as if I were one of their Rakshi."

(Jeddburgh) "Well, I have noticed that when the Brotherhood requests your services, you had best deliver without complaint. "

(Pridak) "Lets speak while we walk. You briefing will be in the main fortress."

(Jeddburgh) "So what business are you conducting in the Southern Continent?"

(Pridak) "The Brotherhood has sent out representatives to certain islands in request that they lower prices for certain supplies. I was previousley sent with my master to Xia, however it was his actions that sealed the deal."

(Jeddburgh) "Really? what did he do?"

(Pridak) "He leveled one of their districts in one night."

(Jeddburgh) "Ah. And here I thought that the Brotherhood strived to create peace in other places."

(Pridak) "Well, not much is very peacful about my master. He is rather truckulent when his time is being wasted."

(Jeddburgh) "I see."

Jeddburgh was prodding Pridak's mind, wanting to know what was off about him. It was not unusual for him to complain about his master, yet so many things seemed off about him. The way he walked, the way he spoke. But perhapse the Brotherhood had changed him, as it had done many others. He was never so open with his personal doings before. He was always very quick to get to a point, and was intent on not straying away from his mission.

As they walked through some of Destral's massive gates into the fortress, Jeddburgh noticed that there were not as many Exo Toa, or Rakshi patroling in the fortress, as there had been before. It was as if they believed there was no threat. This unsettled Jedburgh. There was something going on, but he did not know what it was just yet. He also observed several blast doors installed in the ceiling. They were not there last time. So they raised their security, and at the same time lowerd it? That did not seem right.

As Jeddburgh and Pridak were getting close to the conference room, Jeddburgh realized it was time to make known his suspiscions.

(Jeddburgh) "Pridak. May I ask you a question?"

(Pridak) "Of course."

(Jeddburgh) "Why are you lying to me? And why pretend we are so well aquainted. We hardly know eachother. We both know you are not a friendly spirit, and also, I know you were not on the Southern Continent this week. So tell me, why the ruse?"

Pridak was baffled, and before he could respond, Jeddburgh held a gun to his head, and pulled the triger. Pridak's body fell to the floor, and when it did, his features sunk in, and his appearance changed until he was nothing more than a Rakshi. Jeddburgh turned around, and saw what the problem was. Makuta Gothmog stood behind him, arms crossed, and eyes glued to Jeddburgh's Desert 5.

(Gothmog) "So, you figured it out. I should have assumed that a rat like you would notice something like a person's traits or quirks. I have to admit I am impressed with you powers of observation, but now, it is over, you have nowhere to run, and you cannot hide anywhere here. You can try and run, but I'll catch you."

(Jeddburgh) "Come get me."

Gothmog smiled, and began to walk over to Jeddburgh, his claws raised, and his eyes fixed on him. Suddenly, Jeddburgh made a move. Gothmog was prepaired to dodge, but Jeddburgh did not shoot at Gothmog, but at a blast door control panel. Suddenly, a blast door came flying down from the ceiling, and crashing down on Gothmog, pinning him under it.

Jeddburgh emediately ran in the opposite direction and down the hall. Gothmog lifted the massive door, and freed himself. He then teleported his hounds to him, and sent them after Jeddburgh. The hounds made a loud howling noise, and gave chase. Jeddburgh was fast, but not faster than a rabid Rahi. However, he had one thing that the Rahi did not have, which was preperation.

Jeddburgh threw three grenades behind him, and they went off right in the Rahi's faces. They yelped and scrambled away, but the blast also left a large hole in the floor. Jeddburgh jumped through the hole, and ran back down a hallway.

As he was running however, Gothmog appeared behind him, and kicked him forward. Jeddburgh lost all balance, and fell to the floor. Gothmog was slowly approaching, and he was angry.

(Gothmog) "I was supposed to take you in alive, but I think I changed my mind."

He then blasted a large shadow bolt at Jeddburgh, and it hit him square in the chest and sent him slamming through a wall, and into one of the training areas. It was a large, circular room, and it was completely empty, until suddenly, Rakshi began pouring into the room.

Jeddburgh stood up, a little dazed from the blast, but still functional. He looked around and was surrounded by Rakshi. There was no way he could get to the door, unless he fought.He took out two knives, not very large ones at that, and held them upside down in a defensive position. The Rakshi roared at him, and charged.

Suddenly, the Rakshi all stopped dead in their tracks, and looked around, as if something was amiss in the room. The then all ran away, some teleported, and all the rest ran out the door. Jeddburgh smiled at first, until he looked behind him, and about thirty feet away was a tall, beautiful, yet dangerouse looking being, standing there just looking at him.

(Courtesance) "It is not every day I run into someone who can evade a Makuta, so I must say I am thoroughley impressed. But, I am also offended that you thought you could escape. That is quite a fantasy. However, I am spareing you, in the case that choose to surrender, which in your current situation, would be very wise."

Jeddburgh simply responded by throwing one of his knives in her direction, strait for her head. However, she simpley raised her hand, and caught the blade in between her fingers, then she extended her arm, and sent a shockwave of air right into Jeddburgh, which launched him through a three foot thick stone wall, and right in front of Gothmog.

Gothmog shot an unfriendly glance at Courtesance, as she sleekly stepped through the large hole in the wall.

(Gothmog) "You just always need the credit, don't you?"

(Courtesance) "He was fair game."

After this, two Rakshi came and dragged his body, still alive, down to a cell in the east wing of the fortress. Both Makuta then traveled to the throne room, to inform Miserix of the capture, undoubtedly they would hae a very direct, and painful interrogation.

Chapter 17 ~ The Madness[]

As soon as Courtesance entered the throne room with Gothmog, Miserix new exactly why they were there. It was obvious to some degree that both Makuta wished to interrogate the traitor, yet Miserix had other intentions.

(Courtesance) "We had the traitor taken to an interrogation cell master, now all we need is your approval to interrogate him."

(Miserix) "Neither of you will have the privalige. I want one of you to take the artifact to the supposed randesvouse point that Jeddburgh spoke of, and allow the Patrons to take possession of it. One of you is to follow their ship, or, both of you may go, on as Jeddburgh, and the other incognito. Once you have the location, remove the staff from their possession, and return to me."

(Gothmog) "It will be done master, but what of the interrogation?"

(Miserix) "Serrakaan has returned for a time from the Northern Continent. It is he who will perform the interrogation. Now, you two go, and do not return until my demands are carried out. Understood?"

Both Makuta agreed, and walked away; As they exited, Serrakaan entered the room. He stopped, in front of Miserix, and awaited orders.

(Miserix) Do not dragg out the interrogtion. Find what I want to know, and then leave."

Serrakaan nodded, and walked away; It had been quite some time since he had interrogated someone, and he was looking forward to it.

Later, inside an interrogation room in the main fortress.

Jeddburgh sat still, waiting, watching. Several Rakshi had just stuffed him into a chair, with several metal restraints, which restricted all movement. Then, they all left the room, and closed the door. It was dark, cold, and quiet. The only thing he heard was his own breathing, and the clinging of metal chains that were strapped to his chair from a generator in the ceiling. All that he saw was a small, shimmering glow in the middle of the room, comeing from a light that only illuminated that one spot in the center of the room.

As he waited, he was thinking of the things the Makuta would attempt to torment him with. Obviousley the electric chains would be involved, possibley sharpened objects, heated objects, and things of the like, that would either burn him, cut him, shock him, or drown him. He was not fearful however. He had experienced these many of these things through the years, as it was not his first interrogation, so he was somewhat at peace about it.

As he was mulling over the idea of being tortured in his mind, something about the environment in the room changed. It felt colder, and it looked incredibley dark in a specific spot, as if it had absorbed all the light in one corner of the room.

He stared at it for several minutes with the feeling of a fearful curiosity going through his mind. He felt that something may even be concealed in the darkness. That something was just sitting there watching him. Suddenly, he saw something move, as if the darkness took form, and slowly came toward the dimed light in the middle of the room. As it approached, it got colder, his heart also beat faster. He could feel the blood rushing through his veins, as if they were trying to burst outward. He began to get worried now, as if just this beings presence was enough to set off many red flags in his mind.

He was straining against the restraints that held him there, but they did not budge. As this being drew near, he felt the uncanny urge to look at him, but he somehow knew he would regret it. As his eyes hovered from his own feet, to the being that was nearly a foot away, he felt an unrestrained fear conquer the courage and calm that had been there before. He lurched backward trying to stay away, but the chair was strapped to the floor, and he could not move, or leave.

As he gazed up into the hood the covered the darkness above his shoulders, he suddenly saw two red eyes gleem in a flash. He felt the urge to scream, but he held it in. It was strange, as this being had no weapons at all, had asked no questions, and bore no threatening devices. No. He only looked at him, and Jeddburgh was ready to give him any information he asked for.

But the spector never asked, never spoke. Finally however, he stretched out his clawed, metal hand, and touched the head of his newest victem. His hand touched Jeddburghs forhead, and at first nothing happened, until he bored his clawed fingers into the sides of Jeddburghs skull. Blood slowly dripped out of the four open wounds.

Jedburgh, was then launched into a trance, where he barely felt the wounds he had just sustained. He was on the edge of a cliff, looking out at the ocean. The moonlight gleeming off the oceans waves. All seemed calm, and peacful, until he turned to see the hooded figure standing behind him. The figure cast back his hood, revealing a hideouse, and terrifying visage. Jeddburgh then began to see flashes of more terrifying things that Jeddburgh had only ever seen in his darkest nightmares. It was then, that unnexplaind, and incredible phisical pain struck Jeddburgh, along with uncontrolable, unsustainable panic.

Outside the door, Benjarmin heard unbearable screams. Hopeless notes that almost seared ones ears to hear it. Benjarmin was a little jealouse that Serrakaan recieved all the glory for this. He was insulted that he was not chosen for the interrogation.

As he listened to the continuing cries of pain and terror, Courtesance walked by, and could not let Benjarmin's emotions go unplayed with.

(Courtesance) "Ooo, sounds like Serrakaan is doing quite well in there. Sorry you were not chosen for the interrogation, but we needed the information in a matter of minutes, not days."

(Benjarmin) "Shut up Courtesance. The only reason I was not chosen, was possibley for the fact he would not leave that room whole if it was conducted by me."

(Courtesance) "Perhapse, but I do not see what difference it makes. This guy is going to be soo mentally scarred, he won't know up from down."

(Benjarmin) "Leave me Courtesance, before I loose my patience with you."

(Courtesance) "I am leaving already I am afraid. Miserix is sending me on a Mission, which is more than I can say of you. Hahaha!"

Benjarmin clenched his fists as she walked away. About five minutes after her absence, the screaming stopped, and there was only silence. He waited for a moment, and then opened the door. As he walked inside, he turned on the lights, and saw the expected visual. Jeddburgh was strapped to the chair, but there were no tools used, or things done to suggest physical torture, which Benjarmin found curious. The only thing that suggested physical harm, were four neat holes imbeaded in the skull of the victem. Blood was slowly oosing out of them, and onto the floor. As for Jeddburgh, well, he seemed catatonic.

Benjarmin tested his natural responses, and noticed that his eyes were moving, so he was practically paralyzed, but he could still feel everything. Benjarmin then decided to have a little fun, in a twisted, cruel sort of way.

(Benjarmin) "I know you can hear me. It is such a shame that Serrakaan left you alive. It is almost an irresistable temptation to play with what is left of your psyc, but I have no interest in the mental harms you have recieved. Me? Well, I prefer the old fashioned shock once in a while."

Benjarmin smiled, as he reached for the lever that activated the electrical chains that were connected to Jeddburghs seat. It seemed that he would still be able to play with Serrakaan's left overs, after all.

Back on the Northern Continent.

As expected, Ra, Jarodin, and Telnor both went to the local gardens to investigate, or stalk this new Toa. At first, upon arrival, they had to be very quiet, as she was weary of followers, as her deeds drew much attention. She had rescued a Matoran earlier that week, and her powers seemed to indicate that she was a Toa of water, but as usual, nothing is always as it seems.

(Jarodin) "Well, look at that, there is Tenecius with her. I suppose she was not able to detatch him from her hip after his rescue."

(Telnor) "Admit it Jarodin, you're just jealouse. If you were in his place, you would be doing the exact same thing."

Ra felt uncomfortable about this. He did not like the idea of intruding on someone's privacy, espescially after what Kelvar told him. She had a secret house just to get away from the attention, and Niha was merely relaxing in a garden. He thought that perhapse instead of stalking her, he would try a different approach. He rose out of the bushes and walked over to the main path. He could hear the whispered objections of Jarodin and Telnor as he left, however it was too late to turn back, he had already been seen.

Niha looked at him with a sense of boredome, or disinterest. Tenecius seemed impressed, and rather surprised that another Toa had come there. He walked up to Ra and emediately greeted him.

(Tenecius) "Hello Toa, my name is Tenecius. It is a pleasure to be in your company."

Tenecius looked over at Niha, trying to get her to acknowledge their new acquaintance. But she did not respond.

(Tenecius) "Sorry, she seems a little shy, but her name is Niha, and she is a Toa of water."

(Ra) "I could tell. And sorry for my rudeness, but my name is Ra. It is quite a pleasure to meet you both. Also, Tenecius, I have a couple of friends over their that you should meet, they are quite friendly."

At this que, Jarodin and Telnor rose from their hideing spots and waved shyly. Tenecius walked over there, and began to speak with them. They all three soon found an equal interest in the races that took place earlier that week, and then proceeded to walk to the beach. As they soon vanished from sight, Ra saw fit to speak with this new Toa. He sat on a bench, and began a rather awkward conversation.

(Ra) "I am sorry to intrude on your privacy, but you seem to be a very large interest to the Matoran, and as we are both Toa, I thought we should, well, get to know one another?"

She made no response, and just looked at the floor.

(Ra) "So, um, what island do you come from? Do you have a team? Who are your..."

(Niha) "Look, I never had a team. It really is not your business where I come from, so does that answer your questions?

(Ra) "I never had a team either."

He said this in such a meloncholly way, that she turned her head and looked at him. When they connected their eye contact, there was a subtle connection. Something had kept her from talking t others about her personal life, and now she may have just found someone who understood.

(Niha) "I am sorry. How did they die?"

(Ra) "They did not. I was the only Toa to be selected. I have a somewhat complicated past."

Niha was ammused by this, as she herself did not have a team either. Her past was also very similar to Ra's, as she also was not from this particular world. Not that either one of them knew that similarity, but there were othere things they spoke about.

After a short exchange, they both lightened up a bit. She spoke more freely, and had more things to say, but rather avoding her past, as did Ra. The conversations were quite humorous, and some were sad, while others were exciting, and lively. After about an hour of talking, they decided to walk the beach together. Little did they know however, that they were being watched. On a cliff, about three hundered feet away, a catlike, demonic, creature watched them. It sniffed, and realized that it had found its inteanded target, and that it was time to report to its master. It emediately sent a mental summons to him, and the summons reached Serrakaan in his evening rounds in the halls of Destral. After he recieved his information, he began to make ready for his travel to the Northern Continent. It was high time to put an end to the possible threat that lived there posing as a Toa.

Back on Destral, Krendarr was walking back to the interrogation chamber to check on Benjarmin. He saw Serrakaan quickly walking outward to the wall, and wondered where he was headed. Once he reached the wall, he teleported away. Due to the time Serrakan took to teleport, Krendarr imagined that the place he was traveling would be quite far from their current location.

After a short walk to the interrogation room, he opened the dorr to see Benjarmin standing over an exausted looking body, tht barely looked alive. Krendarr began to question Benjarmins motives when Benjarmin inturrupted his train of thought.

(Benjarmin) "I understand that Serrakaan retrieved the information needed, but would you deny me a little pleasure in showing this low life what happens to traitors to our brotherhood?"

(Krendarr) "I suppose not, but it would not sit well with Miserix. After all, I think Serrakaan was punishment enough. Let us have him taken to a cell."

Benjarmin almost lost his temper with the implication that Serrakaan was better at interrogation than him, but he controlled himself, and allowed the Rakshi to take Jeddburgh away. Before he left however, Benjarmin looked at Krendarr and said.

(Benjarmin) " Never again will you compair me to that rotten, antisoscial, bloody, ghost. Or else I will not respond with such kindness."

As Benjarmin left, Krendarr was quite shocked. He ligitimately thought Benjarmin was going to hit, or assault him, and was quite surprised he did not. Hwever, he was unsure what type of torture was more effective, Benjarmins physical and bloody torture, or Serrakaan mental scarring. Either way however, the information was gained, and that is all that mattered.

On the shores of Destral.

Gothmog walked through one of the gates to reach the outer shores of Destral. He was charged with the duty to give the powerful artifacts back to the Patrons of the Dark, and he would be certain to succeed. He spontaneousley transformed into the exact likeness of Jeddburgh, and walked down the beach. After about five minutes of searching, he located the boat, and walked toward the guards who were in front of it.

(Guard) "I suppose your mission was a success?"

Jeddburgh looked around and rolled his eyes.

(Jeddburgh) "Oh no! It was terrible. I was found out the momment I stepped on shore, and they chased me all through the fortress. They caught me, and tortured me. Then, they put me in prison, but I got away. Now, I come running to this boat as a means of escape with Rakshi crawling from around every corner of the compound just waiting to catch us. Can't you hear the alarm ringing out?"

The guard rolled his eyes. He should have expected Jeddburgh to say something like that, as he had never failed a mission like this before. After the guard exchanged a dirty look in return of Jeddburgh's supposed sarcasm, they all boarded the little boat, and headed out to sea. After about five minutes, they could see a ship on the horizon. No doubt they would go aboard and travel the rest of the way to the main headquarters.

Jeddburgh looked around, almost worried. The guard looked at him and saw him doing so and said.

(Guard) "What's wrong?"

(Jeddburgh) "I just got a small feeling that we were being followed."

The guard looked around, and saw nothing. He gave a sigh of annoyance, and continued to row the boat.

(Jeddburgh) "You don't believe me do you?"

(Guard) "No, I do not."

(Jeddburgh) "There is no such thing as too paranoid. Remember that."

As the words left Jeddburghs mouth, he looked overboard and saw something swimming in the water. It looked like a Takea shark, but Jeddburgh new better than that. He was curious as to how Courtesance was to follow them. Now he got his answer.

Back on the Northern Continent.

Ra and Niha were strolling the beach together. The former awkwardness seemed quite gone from their speech, and now they spoke freely, accept about the former lives. Ra of course was not the Toa he claimed to be, but the irony was, niether was Niha. Ra suspected something was amiss with her past, but he knew better than to ask about it. He only assumed that it was either painful to talk about, or that she wanted it to be a secret. In reality, it may have been a little bit of both.

Ra was telling Niha of the day when he awoke from his sleep, and how he baely remembered what happened to him. This conversation sparked some mystery, and Niha seemed quite intreagued. As they spoke about it, Niha was wondering weather or not she really wanted to know what happened in those missing hours, as Ra seemed to indicate that when he awoke, he was in incredible pain. "What could cause such pain in a Toa?" She wondered.

As they were on their way back to the Gardens, they met Tenecius met them and when he did, sounded a little worried.

(Tenecius) "Hey guys listen. I think I am going to go home. Something has been making me feel rather uncomfortable."

(Ra) "Uncomfortable how?"

(Tenecius) "Well, me, Telnor, and Jarodin were strolling around the more thick parts of the gardens, when we felt a very weary feeling come over us. We were suddenley cold, and it almost felt as though we were being watched."

(Niha) "Well where did they go?"

(Tenecius) "Well, they set out back home to the tower, and I was about to do the same."

(Ra) "Well why didn't you?"

(Tenecius) "Cause there are woods in between us, and the tower. I feel so stupid, but I am afraid to go in there alone. I can feel eyes on me. Even right now!"

Ra and Niha were astonished, as he was shivering as he spoke. Something was obviousley wrong.

(Niha) "We can walk you back to the tower, but I myself don't know where it is."

(Ra) "I do. Come on Tenecius. Everything is fine. You probably got a bug or something in the gardens. After all it is late at night. It's probably what made you cold."

(Tenecius) "No! There is something here. There has to be."

(Ra) "Come on. Let's go. You'll be fine. Two Toa and a Matoran. What could possibley go wrong?"

As they walked toward the woodland road that let to the tower, Ra felt something strange come over him. He felt, as Tenecius described, cold. He then began to feel that there was someone looking at them. Every time he heard a tree move, or a leaf crackle, he flinched with anticipation. However he did not want Tenecius to see him like this, so he tried to stifle the feeling. But there was something strangely familiar about this feeling, as if he had felt it before. He tried to remember when, but he could not even fathome when it happened.

About five minutes into the woods something spontaneousley terrifying happened. Well, maybe not to the common spectator, but to Ra, and the others, in their mood of paranoia, nothing worse could happen. Something, a catlike Rahi, all in black, leapt from out of nowhere right onto Ra, and pinned him to the ground with incredible force. Ra was barely able to keep its jaws at bay from clamping down upon his face, and as he tried, he heard Tenecius utter a mindless, and horrific scream. After about ten seconds of wrestleing with this best, Niha got out of the initial shock of the moment, and slammed her trident, like a bat, against the beast's side. It flopped off of Ra, and lay still for about a second, before it scrambled up. Tenecius was screaming, and running as fast as he could down the path, while Ra and Niha prepaired to deal with this beast.

Meanwhile, back on Destral.

Takadox was wondering around, looking for something to do. He had been on the island only long enough to inform Miserix of Pridak's dealings with Xia, but now, he was just bored. As he walked around, he suddenly ran into a Makuta named Mutran.

(Mutran) " Ah, Takadox, where exactly are you going? You do realize that it is frowned upon for people to just wonder around the fortress without the propper clearance."

(Takadox) " I am simpley here because Miserix requested my presence. But now, I am rather bored of things, seeing as I must return to my duties as a confident of Pridak."

(Mutran) "Ah Pridak. How goes his pursuits of glory amongst the outside world? Hm? Is it everything he dreamed of?"

(Takadox) "Not yet. He is trying to find someone to arm him with weapons at the momment, and his materials are somewhat limited. I hear he may make a proposal to the Brotherhood for help."

(Mutran) "Ah. Now a moment ago you sounded weary when you said you were to be his confident. Why is that?"

(Takadox) "Well it is quite a bothersome job. Pretending that you are agreeing with all that Pridak has to say. Even though I am getting a position of prestige and power amongst five other people, I still don't like it. I am not one to share if you know what I mean."

(Mutran) "Well, if you wish to delay your return to Pridak's feet, allow me to borrow some of your time."

(Takadox) "Very well. How so?"

(Mutran) "Ah, walk with me, and you will find out."

They took to the stairwell, and walked a long way. They went very far down. The way itself was poorly lit, and the smell was funky, or stuffy. Finally, they reached the bottom of the stairwell, and found themselves inside the dungeons. They passed by several cells, all of them either occupied, or filthy. Takadox recognized some of the prisoners. They were the scum of the earth, as it were. He had seen wanted posters of them on several islands. He guessed that the people who put up the signs did not realize he had been taken to possibley the most terrible prison ever.

(Takadox) "Who are all these people. I recognize a few, but some of them I have no idea who they are."

(Mutran) "They are the ones who are stupid enough to think themselves uncatcheable. The ones who are foolish enough to think their deeds will go unnoticed. Yes, they are the ones that common authorities are too usless to catch, so we take the pleasure of doing that for them."

(Takadox) "What is to become of them?"

(Mutran) "Prison until death. Or in certain situation, executions. Some crimes are too heinous to allow for no judgement."

(Takadox) "I see."

As they walked a little further, at the very end of the hall, there was a closed cell, with a very small hole in the door for peeking in. Mutran stopped, and as did Takadox.

(Mutran) "I have need to know what exactly the condition of this prisoner is."

(Takadox) "How long has he been in solitary confinement?"

(Mutran) "A few hours, give or take. He is a relatively new prisoner, but the circumstances of his capture and interrogation have me curious."

Mutran opened the door, and pointed inside. Takadox walked in, and noticed a prisoner just laying on the floor. The cell was actually larger than he thought it would be. There was no furniture, nothing in the room at all. It was basically a concrete box. As Takadox walked in and gave a closer look to the prisoner, he saw that it had alot of blood running down his head.

Takadox moved closer to look, wen suddenly, the prisoner jumped up and tackled Takadox. Takdox was pinned to the floor, and he was trying to force the prisoner off, when the prisoner bit down on his arm with yellow, dirty teeth. Takadox screamed, and slammed his fist into the prisoner's head. The prisoner reeled back, tearing off a gouge of Takadox's flesh in his mouth, blood spurting from the open wound.

Takadox leapt up and ran out the door. Mutran shut it tight, and took hold of Takadox by his wounded arm. Takadox screamed in pain, but suddenly, he felt an unexpected relief. He looked at his arm, and it healed right before his eyes. He gazed at Mutran, and Mutran gave a crooked smile.

(Mutran) So, it seems our prisoner is in a fine mood."

Suddenly,a large banging noise could be heard inside the cell, as the prisoner hurled his body against the door, trying to get out. Then, after a momment, an unsettleing, and rather horrific laughter broke out in the cell. It got louder, and louder. So loud, that Mutran took Takadox by the arm, and left the dungeons.

After they got outside onto a balconni facing the ocean, Takadox yanked his arm from Mutran's grasp, and cursed at him. And them followed his complaints with.

(Takadox) "That prisoner could have killed me!!! What is he? Insane!!! What happened?? Why did you let me go in the cell?"

Mutran frowned, and looked out to the sea.

(Mutran) "That particular prisoner was a victim of torture from the hand of Serrakaan."

Takadox then realized how serious this was. It was very unusual for any of Serrakaan's vicims to be still alive, but moving, and functioning? That was entirely unusual.

(Mutran) "After Serrakaan was done with him, the prisoner, like many of Serrakaan's live victims, was in a vegetative state. He could not move, he could not speak, he could not even scream. Now, Makuta Benjarmin followed up Serrakaan's handiwork with electric shock, which seemed to change the outcome that Serrakaan's torture should have had. You see, Serrakaan's methods of torment are usually mental. He will get inside your brain and tear it apart piece by piece. The prisoner was left unable to function whatsoever due to the horrendous damage that Serrakaan left upon his mind. But after Serrakaan left however, Makuta Benjarmin proceeded to torment him further with electric jolts. Now, suddenly, he is able to move, eat, function, and laugh. Now don't you find that a bit odd?

(Takadox) "How is that even possible?"

(Mutran) "The explanation is this. The electric waves that went into his brain altered the damage to his mind left by Serrakaan, so now, he is able to function yes, but at a terrible cost. His mind is still practically torn, yet he still walks, and talks. He is insane. Raveing mad, with no hope for a cure. He will be a madman until the end of his days, and only because of one reason. Because he was a traitor."

(Takadox) "What does this have to do with me?"

(Mutran) "You are about to recieve an incredible amount of power you say, along with five other beings of intelligence, yes? I only hope that this example shows you that beings of seemingley perfect health, or intelligence, can be brought down to such a low place as you just saw. I trust you will be responsible with your newly gained power. Because if you are not, well, you just saw what becomes of traitors. If you so much as even think of treachery, you will be in the exact same boat as that madman in the dungeons. With no hope, and no future. Just insanity, and nothing more. Got it?"

Takadox shook his head yes, with an incredible new fear of Mutran, and a huge insentive to get on Miserix's good side, and stay on it. As Mutran turned and left Takadox to ponder this, he could only imagine how terrible being a prisoner of your own mind could possibley be.

Chapter 18 ~ Cold Blood[]

Jarodin and Telnor were walking hastily down a shadowey path, talking back and forth with one another so as to ease the rather unsettleing silence around them.

(Telnor) "Well Jarodin, I hate to hear that you won't be here for very long. I wish you could stay."

(Jarodin) "Well, my visit was mostly just to see Kelvar race, and of course she did not dissapoint. But I am sorry to leave. I wish I could stay, but I have responsibilities back on Teresvranem. Also, alot of friends miss me there."

(Telnor) "Well alot of friends are gonna miss you here too. Me and Terreskah will really miss you. I mean, you have only been here for a couple of weeks, and you already seem like a perfect native. And I don't know what Kollus will do without you. He only ever hangs out with you."

(Jarodin) "Yeah, I will miss you guys. But I can send you guys mesages, and I can still contact you."

(Telnor) "You know that won't be the same. But if that is what we gotta settle for, than ok I guess."

(Jarodin) "Also, there was that Tenecius guy. It was nice to meet him tonight. He seemed pretty cool."

(Telnor) "Eh, I'm cooler. And wiser. Oh, and don't forget humble."

(Jarodin) "Hahaha!!!! Oh Telnor I am gonna miss that sense of humor above all else. But you have to admit, he was a really nice guy."

(Telnor) "Yeah, he was. But toward the time we had to go, he was acting really weird don't you think?"

(Jarodin) "Well, it was probably that chill we got in the gardens. Must have been some poisonous spores or something like that. I can still feel it."

(Telnor) "Huh. Me too. What do you think that was anyway?"

(Jarodin) "I am not sure."

It seemed as though after they acknowledged the feeling, it got more intense. They stopped talking, and they just walked, and a bit faster in pace. The less they spoke, the more paranoid they got. It seemed that with each step, it got colder, and their ears got more sensitive to the slightest noise. It was a windy night to, so teir eyes were darting this way and that all over the road.

As they had almost reached the tower, they suddenly heard a terrifying scream. They both jumped, and Telnor yelped a little bit, but then they listened. The scream seemed to get closer, and closer. The feeling of terror slowley krept up into their minds, and Telnor's eyes were glued to the path, with their back faceing the tower.

Jarodin picked up a rock, and was prepaired to throw it at whatever was about to round the corner, but as soon as he saw who it was, he halted. It was Tenecius! Jarodin and Telnor were more shocked by the look on his face than by his screaming, and Jarodin soon took hold of him by the shoulders and shook him.

(Jarodin) "Tenecius! What happened? What's going on?"

Tenecius could not speak. He could barely catch his breath, and so Jarodin released him, and let him rest. All three Matoran were panting under the fear they had just experienced. Telnor squated next to Tenecius, who was lying down, and began to ask him questions.

(Telnor) "What happened? Why were you running?"

(Tenecius) "Something, attacked the Toa! It was a Rahi! I don't know what kind, but it is trying to kill them!"

(Jarodin) "Well we gotta go back and help them! Come on! We can't waste time!"

Tenecius lunged for Jarodin's arm, and grabbed it.

(Tenecius) "No!!!!! We can't go back in there!!! We can't!! Please don't make me....................."

Suddenly, Tenecius' gaze turned toward the woods that were off the path. He stopped speaking, and began shaking. His eyes looked possessed, as if in fear, or pure dread. He scooted away toward the tower with great haste and then rose to his feet. Jarodin and Telnor felt their hearts begin to beat withing their chests with an audible reaction. They ran over to Tenecius, and they grouped tightly together.

They all looked toward the woods, and saw what draped their hearts in such dread. It stalked out of the woods, and stopped when it caught sight of the Matoran. It was tall, taller than any Toa they had ever seen. It was draped in black, and it was hooded and cloaked. No face could be seen under the hood, but they felt the eyes of this spector peirce their hearts like a dagger. Telnor made a move for the door, and incited much excitement in Tenecius. So much so, that they both yelled and ran as fast as they could toward the closed door. Suddenly, the spector stretched out his hand in their direction, and a massive wind came and knocked all three Matoran slamming into the tower walls. Telnor and Tenecius were knocked out by the impact, both bleeding from the head. Jarodin felt a snap in his leg, but he was still awake, to his regret.

The spector moved closer to him. Jarodin felt his blood run cold, and his heart sink into despair. Yet, despite this, tried to stand up. As he did, the spector looked at him, and stopped, surprised by the Matoran's bravery. As Jarodin met the gaze of his tormentor, he felt weakened, and helpless. His limbs suddenly gave out, but a clawed hand grabbed him by the neck, and stopped his fall. The spector lifted Jaroeroden up, and made Jarodin's eyes even with his.

Jarodin felt as if he were in a catatonic state, but Serrakaan was impressed with this Matoran, and was curious about his fate. Serrakaan looked into Jarodin's eyes, and saw visions of his future. Apparently, fate had different plans for this one. In his future, he was to be a great, and formidable Toa. One who oddley enough opposed the Makuta for some reason, and had an emnity with Makuta Benjarmin. He saw the people that Jarodin would grow to love, and grow to hate. He saw many familiar places that this Toa would visit, and how powerful he would become. He saw how he was not above murder, and he did not take so stricktly to the Toa code.

All of this Serrakaan saw, and wondered how many lives would be altered if he were to kill Jarodin right now. He looked even further into this Toa's future, and saw that this would not be their last encounter, if he allowed him to live on past this day. However, like all beings, Serrakaan saw that even Jarodin had a cruel fate in store for him. A fate, that would eventually end in death. This to some extent satisfied Serrakaan. He saw how this Toa would suffer in the future, and he did not want to deprive fate the pleasure of delivering such cruelty. However, he also saw how beneficial it would be if this powerful Toa never existed.

With both ideas in mind, Serrakaan came to the conclusion that he would not get a second chance to kill this Matoran, if he did not act now. However, either decision he would make, would greatly alter the future, and it satisfied Serrakaan to think he had such power in his grasp.

With his decision made, Serrakaan dropped the Matoran, and slowly drew his sword. It would be the very first Matoran he had ever killed, and he had a slight feeling that it would not be his last.

Far away on a remote island.

Gothmog had been the perfect proxy for Jeddburgh. He had completely fooled the guards in every aspect of Jeddburgh's character, and he was quite close to his original goal. The initial impression that Miserix gave him was that he was to retrieve the staff once he had seen the home island of the Patrons of the Dark, but as Gothmog thought about it, he would never get a better opportunity to strike than now, and possibley end the Patrons once and for all.

As he walked into the large palace, their base of oppertions, he scanned just how many guards there were, where they were, and how well armed they were. It turns out that this organization was larger than he had reckoned at first.

As they made their way into the very large throne room, still under a little construction, Gothmog had their leader in his sights. He was sitting their speaking to one of the guards on a security matter, accept te guard was emediately recognized by Gothmog as Courtesance in desguise.

Courtesance was expressing that there was an intruder in the building, but they had lost track of him. Alluksonnion was not at all pleased at this, and so he sent a large battallion of guards, including Courtesance, out to search for the intruder.

As they left, he turned his attention to Jeddburgh, and the three guards who were escorting the staff. Alluksonnion got a great look of surprise and pleasure upon his face, as he took the staff into his hands. He felt an enormouse amount of power overcome him, and he smiled, and sat at his throne, staff in hand.

(Alluksonnion) "Ah Jeddburgh, once again you have not ceased to impress me. This was by far the most dangerouse mission you have ever been sent upon, and you completed it with little to no effort. You have no idea of how this staff will change things, how it will benefit this world. The Patrons will be able to use it with maximum potential to heal the damage that has been done to this world, and to aid others in their endeavors."

As Alluksonnion went on about his plans to help the world with the staff's power, Gothmog hesetaited to strike him down. What if it was a big mistake to do so? This being could be a potential ally to the Brotherhood should anything too severe occurr. Perhapse it was a good thing that they had the staff, despite their original leader's missuse of it.

Finally, he told Jeddburgh where to find his prize for his success, and that he was to leave the island. Gothmog new he either had to act now, or never. However, he chose to spare this one. After all, should he become a disturbance, it would not be too difficult to sack the fortress.

As he left the fortress, he sent a mental summons to Courtesance to meet him at the docks. After about six minutes, she met him there in a secluded spot away from prying eyes. Courtesance was at first not at all pleased with Gothmog's decision to let Alluksonnion live, and she certainly demonstrated her displeasure with a rather loud argument. However, after Gothmog explained everything, she callmed down, and realized that perhapse his course of action, to avoid violence, and pursue peace was what the Brotherhood needed. After a smaller disscussion, they left the island to head back to Destral, confident that Miserix would appreciate the discision that was made.

They made no mistake in determining Alluksonnion's intentions as noble, but there was still a problem. For there was one person who did oppose Alluksonnion's morals on the matter, and now that he knew where the staff was, it was only a mater of time before he assumed control of it, and returned the Patrons of the Dark's name to its former glory.

Back on the Northern Continent, ten minutes earlier.

As Tenecius ran, Ra and Niha both retreated into a defensive position. They looked at this viscious beast with curiousity, as they had never seen a Rahi quite like it. Despite its appearance however, there was something that placed even more of a fearful presence in this Rahi, as if it were taught, or created with the intent to strike fear into others minds as it hunted.

The beast leapt nimbley into the air and landed on Niha. She wrestled up to here feet, and she was trying to wrentch her trident out of its jaws. As she did, she twisted it, and truned it, but the beast just would not let go. Ra went toward it, but as if it had eyes in the back of its head, it kicked out with both of its back paws, and imbeaded its claws into Ra's chest, sending him also flying backwards. As its feet touched the ground, it wrentched Niha's weapon away, and then bit down on her arm. She screamed in pain, and was being jerked this way and that, trying to not provide to much resistance, so her arm would not be pulled off!

After a moment, Ra got up, and blasted the beast with a concentrated blast of sunlight. The beast screamed, and leapt away from Niha, letting go of her arm. It landed on its side, and wiggled, and squirmed as if it were on fire. It continued to hiss and scream, as it ran off into the blackened forest.

Ra ran over to Niha, and took her by the hand. She was lying down, as if in shock of the horendouse moment. He helped her up, and began to speak with her.

(Ra) "Are you ok?"

(Niha) "I think so. My armor took most of its bite, but I still got cut."

She showed Ra her arm, and where he blue armor was, there were huge scratches carved into it, with blood slowley seeping from it, but not at a lethal, or worrysome rate. She looked at Ra's chest and saw many claw marks that were perfectly parrallel to eachother. They were only deep enough to draw blood, but only one of the scratches was bleeding profusely. She looked at it, and said.

(Niha) "That looks bad! "We need to get you cleaned up."

(Ra) "Yes, we can find medical supplies........."

Before he could finish his sentence, he paused, and stared with wide eyes down the path.

(Niha) "What is it?"

(Ra) "The Matoran! Come on!"

Emediately understanding the danger the matoran were in, they both sprinted down the path as fast as their legs could carry them. They looked from side to side on the road, and only saw utter blackess amongst the trees. As they sprinted for about three minutes, they could see the fortress peeking into view. As they rushed toward it however, they saw something that made them want to stop, and run faster at the same time. They saw Telnor and Tenecius just laying there in front of the fortress bleeding, and they saw Jarodin laying down in front of The Blood Summoner. As Ra saw the Blood Summoner, he emediately had flashes in his mind of a fight that he never remembered. He saw himself facing this beast in combat, with only his powers, and his sword, and this beast had several weapons that it utilized through the fight. He remembered the horrific pain he went through, and remembered the power this beast displayed. As Ra's memorey plagued him in this moment, he hesitated, and that led to tragedy.

The Blood Summoner took his sword, and plunged it into Jarodin's chest. Jarodin did not scream, or move. He emited only a sigh of death, and he gagged on something coming from his mouth. It was blood. Niha screamed at the beast, and Ra yelled, "NO!!!!!! "

The Blood Summoner apparently did not see them yet, and it looked up and saw them with surprise. There was a pause, and a faint hint of recognition as he saw the two Toa, for he knew exactly who they BOTH were. Suddenly, he vanished with a blure of speed into the forest. Niha and Ra just stood there near Jarodin's seemingly lifeless body. Finally, they got a hold of themselves, and ran over to the Matoran. Ra checked the other two, as Niha ran to Jarodin. She picked him up, and blood poured from his open wound, and onto her chest.

(Niha) "Help!!!! Sombody!!! Help!!!!"

Suddenly, Turaga Ulnar, and three other Matoran ran out of the tower, and saw the horrific scene. Ulnar had Telnor and Tenecius taken up to their rooms, as their wounds were minor compared to Jarodin's.

(Ulnar) "We need to get this one to the infirmery quickley!! He has already lost so much blood!! Hurry!!!!"

Another couple of Matoran came out and picked up Jarodin. Ulnar rushed in after them. Niha stood there with her hands on her head, shaking. She looked at Ra, and saw rage in his eyes. She new he was about to do something dangerous.

(Ra) "Stay inside. I will be right back."

(Niha) "Wait, what are you going to do?"

(Ra) "I am going after it."

(Niha) "No. No way. You can't do that. Don't you dare do that! It's gone. Just let's go inside, and help the Matoran."

(Ra) "No Matoran is safe while that thing is out there. I have to stop it. I can stop it."

(Niha) "No. Please don't do this."

(Ra) "What choice do I have?"

Ra went inside, going to prepair for a fight. During their last encounter, he only had a sword, but this time, he was going far better armed. He went upstairs, and into his room. There was a large package of things that he had delivered from his room in the Ko Matoran village that was in the mountains. He opened it, and inside, was a large assortment of weaponry. It was time The Blood Summoner felt the full brunt of Ra's weaponry put to good use.

Meanwhile, Niha was still standing in the doorway of the tower. She was looking into the forest, and she realized that there was no way Ra could defeat this Blood Summoner alone. She then walked into the forest, her trident in hand. As she walked, the moonlight reflected off the treetops. The blueish light lead her safely through the forest, and after about ten minutes,she was able to guid herself into a clearing. There were trees all around her. A clear view of the mountains was raised above the dark green patches, and the waves of the ocean could still barely be heard from about a mile away. There was a strong breeze in the air, blowing the trees this way and that. Niha just stood in the middle of the clearing, and shut her eyes, filtering out the sounds of nature in her mind.

About a minute later, she felt something in her. A feeling of despair, or anguish, of fear. She opened her eyes, and nothing had changed around her, until she turned around. When she did, she looked upon the black silouette that was outlined in the moonlight. The black robes that covered the being blew in the wind, and they could be heard flapping in the breeze. She gazed into the empty black hole that was covered by the hood of the robe. It seemed as though not even a body inhabited the robes, but just the sheer outline of a person, and nothing more.

Finally, she rose to the courage in her heart to speak to this beast.

(Niha) "You presence here is not welcome. Go back to the black hole you call home. Leave these innocent beings alone, and never return here ever again!"

The Blood Summoner seemed impressed by this little speech, but it did not faze him whatsoever. He also just realized who this courageous Toa was, and he smiled to think how long it had been since their last meeting. He then called out to her in her mind, and spoke.

(Serrakaan) "Return to your dominion sea witch. My purpose here does not involve you."

(Niha) "Your purpose here is in vain. Your need to slaughter can be satisfied elsewhere, and it will be satisfied elsewhere. For if your intent is to harm another being on this Continent, then I will stand in your way. I won't allow you to get away with this carnage unpunised, or unopposed."

(Serrakaan) "If you so choose it to be this way. But you have only to be removed. If you choose to stay, I will not be hesitant to send you back to the oceans from whence you came."

(Niha) "We will see."

With this, Niha drew out her trident, and raised it to oppose Serrakaan. Serrakaan slowley drew his massive sword, and held it so it pointed down in and underhanded grip in Niha's direction. Now, all that remained, was for someone to make the first move.

In the blink of an eye, Serrakaan zoomed right in front of Niha and began his assault with three swift, almost invisible strikes. Niha was surprised with herself due to the fact that she was able to parry all three blows, despite the incredible force behind each one. However, the final blow knocked her trident arm away from her torso, and with nothing guarding it, Serrakaan quickley kicked her in the stomache, knocking her about twenty feet away.

Despite the incredible pain the kick caused her, she was able to do a mid air back flip, and land on her feet skidding on the ground. She stuck her trident into the ground in order to stop skidding, and then she leaned the trident toward Serrakaan, and blasted him with a harsh stream of water.

He easily dispersed the blast with extreme heat, causing the stream of water to mearely evaporate into steam. He then countered with a powerful blast of air. She was struck dead on, but once again, it did not dispose of her. She was about to slam into a tree, when she executed another flip, that landed her feet on the tree trunk.

She then bounced herself off the tree just as Serrakaan sent an air shockwave that shattered the trunk in half. In that split second, Niha used her telekinetic abilities to fling the massive trunk at Serrakaan. Right before it could hit Serrakaan however, a bolt of lightning came from the sky, and destroyed the trunk. As she landed on all fours, she barely had time to look um when Serrakaan rushed over to her position, and attempted to slice off her legs from behind.

She leapt into the air, and avoided the strike, and at the same time, she attempted to bring her trident slamming down upon Serrakaan's head, but before she could, Serrakaan grabbed the trident with his free hand, and whirled it in a circular motion, spinning it, and Niha in mid air. As this transpired, Serrakaan struk at her again while she spunn, and he nearly severed her spine with his blade, but she spunn just out of reach. Due to this failure, he followed up the missed strike with another blast of air that sent her flying to the other end of the clearing.

This time she did not catch herself, as her back slammed into one of the trees that outlined the clearing. She then fell to the ground, and crawled onto all fours. There was a peculiar pause in the fighting. Niha had not realized it, but the battle that just occured was only seconds long. She was panting, as it took a tone of effort to keep up with Serrakaan's pace, but unlike other beings who had fought him before, she was actually succeeding. Even Serrakaan himself was impressed with her speed, and ability to quickley adapt to the situation he would literally throw her into. As the pause went on for about four seconds, she looked at Serrakaan, expecting him to rush over to her, and smight her. But in this case, she was actually wrong. He was looking at her with a certain expression, not in his face, but rather his body language, and that expression said to her, "Do you want to go on?"

With this simple expression, she became fired up, and ready to fight again. She raised her trident and blasted a gust of water at Serrakaan. Serrakaan almost automatically dodged, and then raised the earth beneath Niha, whick catapulted her toward his postion. The angle in which she was flying was perfectly aligned with Serrakaan's blade, right until Niha turned in mid air, and avoided the blow. She landed only a few feet past Serrakaan, on all fours, and she had to execute a backwards hand spring to avoid Serrakaan's followup attack to her back. She landed right in front of him, and deflected three more strikes. Then, a fourth strike drove her trident into the ground. Before she could pull it loose, Serrakaan swiftly kicked it out of the ground, and out of her hands, which made it fly to the other end of the battlefield.

Unarmed, and right in front of her opponent, Niha was in an awkward situation. Serrakaan quickley grabbed her hair with his free hand, and lifted her off the ground by it. He then slashed his blade right toward her head, but in a swift act of wit, Niha was able to use water that was in the grass to wrapp around her feet, and pull her body down. Despite the pain it caused her to practically yank her own hair, it was a smart move, as Serrakaan's blade fell short of her neck, and insted cut right through her hair, releasing her.

She fell to the ground, and nimbley slipped in between his legs, and drew water from the grass and formed an incredibley sharp ice cycle. As Serrakaan turned around, she did a backwards summersault in between his legs again, avoiding his downward strike. Once behind him, she then leapt up in the air, and jabbed the ice cycle down into the back of his neck.

Serrakaan quickly reached over his shoulder, grabbed her by the neck, and flung her over his shoulder, and slamming into the ground about ten feet away. The impact took her breath away, and she almost blacked out. However, she remained consciouse just to see Serrakaan pull the ice cycle out of his neck, and hurl it at her.

She was able to dodge it by flinging herself to the ground, but she did not see Serrakaan creep up behind her and grab her by the foot. He then picked her up, and slammed her into the ground, he then threw her across the battlefield, and into another tree. The tree nearly snapped under the preasure, indicating just how hard he threw her. She then fell to the ground, accept this time, she did not stand up. She was shaking uncontrollably, trying to fight off the pain that consumed her body, but allas, she could not. A tear went down her mask as she let loose the scream of agony that she had attempted to hold in as long as she could.

Serrakaan put away his sword, and looked at her. He was purely satisfied be the scream she emitted, and he would enjoy hearing more. However, instead of finishing her off, Serrakaan called out to her in her mind.

(Serrakaan) "That blow nearly broke your spine, yet it was almost just as painful. I can end your suffering right now however. I can take these memories of pain and terror from you, and you will live on in sweet ignorance. All you must do, is leave. You are not the reason for my journey here, thus it would be a waste to kill you. I trust that you will show wisdom."

The voice was both terrible, yet hypnotic at the same time. Niha was stunned that Serrakaan would make such an offer, yet she was almost relieved. Part of her almost leapt at the chance to accept the offer, when suddenly reason took over her mind. Why was Serrakaan, in a way, being merciful? Why would he allow her to live? She reasoned that he would just rather her be out of the way, and it would be more convinient for him if she just left than to kill her. But why not kill her? She was defensless, almost powerless to stop him at that moment. He could easily kill her, but he chose not to. She eventually came to her decision, and she slowley stood up, and spoke to Serrakaan.

(Niha) "I will not let a being, who would kill a defensless Matoran run freely through these lands. I will not leave you to torment anyone else here. I revoke your offer."

As she said this, she picked up her trident, and pointed it at Serrakaan. Serrakaan frowned, as he in fact did not prefer to kill her, but now, he felt as though he had little choice in the matter. Serrakaan then bared his claws, and began to walk over to her position. He would tear her limb from limb for refuseing such a generous offer as this.

As he was walking over there however, he suddenly heard someone in the corner of the clearing.

(Ra) "Leave her alone dark one, or I will kill you where you stand."

He turned to see the one he came for, the supposed Toa of sunlight, pointing some sort of gun at him. Ra was now armed from head to toe with an arsenal that even impressed Serrakaan. This arsenal contained a sword, several grenades, a light blaster, a pickax, a claw, and of course his elemental powers. Seeing Ra with all of these weapons inspired Niha to fight Serrakaan at his side. As they both readied themselves for combat, Serrakaan realized that before the night was over, he would have to kill them both. This time, he drew no weapons; he only raised his hands in a defensive position, and prepaired for a long fight.

As soon as he had raised his hands in defense, Ra blasted three quick shots from his light blaster. Serrakaan's body twisted and turned to avoid the shots, and they all flew by, burning holes into the trees. Niha quickly followed up Ra's attack with a water blast. Serrakaan leapt strait up into the air, and avoided the blast. He was about sixty feet in the air, when he suddenly spread wide his cloak, forming what looked like torn and withered wings.

He then dove down right at Ra, and slammed his clawed feet into Ra's chest. Ra flew backward and slammed into the ground, his breath knocked out of him. He looked up to see Serrakaan rush toward him with claws bared. He closed his eyes and clenched his fists in anticipation for what would happen next, but as he did, Niha, using her telekinetic abilities, slammed a giant rock into Serrakaan, broadsiding him.

Serrakaan slammed into the ground, but quickley recovered and landed on his feet and left hand, crouching. He turned to Niha, and then suddenly blood began to burst from her arm where she was bitten by Serrakaan's rahi. She screamed in pain and surprise as she fell to her knees. Serrakaan was about to enhance the bloody carnage when Ra shot him in the shoulder with his light gun. Serrakaan emediately turned on Ra, and sent three disks of nearly solid air flying strait for him.

Ra successfully dodged the first two, but the third one caught his arm, and sent his light blaster flying away. Almost in an emediate response, Ra blasted a bolt of sunlight with his other hand, and it hit Serrakaan square in the chest. Serrakaan made not a sound, but he crouched down, indicating some sort of pain or discomfort. As Ra prepaired to shoot him again, Serrakaan dashed into the forest, and then all was silent.

Ra went over to Niha to check on her. Her arm had ceased bleeding, but the wound was still fresh.

(Ra) "Are you ok?"

(Niha) "Yes, but we have to beware. It is not over yet."

They both walked slowly to the middle of the clearing, and waited. Serrakaan was in the woods somewhere, and he was not far, for they could still feel his presence. As they waited, they began to hear the noise of something spinning. They looked around, and the noise got louder, and louder. Suddenly, ten boomarang like blades that were about as tall as a Toa flew out of the forest and began to swarm around Ra and Niha. Both of them were blocking with their weapons as each blade zoomed by them, making circles around the two as they passed by. They recieved numerouse cuts to their arms and legs, but usually just close calls rather than deep wounds. Still, each of these razor sharp blades could take off one of their limbs if they were not careful. After about fifteen seconds of blocking these seemingly sentient blades, the blades all retracted into the forest, and not a second later, Serrakaan burst out, caught Ra by the throat, and continued his speed attack by taking Ra into the darkened woods with him.

The flew about fifty feet into the woods when Serrakaan slammed Ra against a tree, and began choking him. Ra tried to get Serrakaan to let go, but nothing was working. At this rate, he would be unconsciouse in seconds. But in the absolute nick of time, Niha froze Serrakaan in a sold block of ice, leaving only his hand unfrozen. Ra then unleashed a blinding flash bang that made Serrakaan's hand spring open, and drop Ra. Serrakaan was in excrusciating pain from the blast, and he could not move! Ra landed at the base of the tree, and gasped for air. Niha ran up to him and helped him up, but just before they got too relieved, Serrakaan burst out of his icey prison. As the ice shattered into thousands of tiny shards, Serrakaan took control over them, and hurled them all at the two Toa.

Ra extended his hand and formed a massive field of blazing hot sunlight that caught each shard and incinerated them. He then hurled the sphere of sunlight at Serrakaan, who teleported out of the way allowing the sunlight sphere to completely desintigrate a tree trunk, leaving the branches and leaves to crash to the forest floor.

Niha looked toward the edge of the forest, and saw a white patch in the distance beyond the trees. It was snow! If she could get over there, she could manipulate the water in the snow, and use it as a weapon! She grabbed Ra's hand and lead him out running. Eventually, the made it out, and she was right! They were at the base of the snowey mountains, and there was snow everywhere!

Ra and Niha leaned over and panted very hard. They were exausted trying to keep up with Serrakaan's combative speed, but soon they hoped they would get their second wind, and perhapse things would not be so difficult. Also, Niha had a tactical advantage, as there was snow all around them now, and since snow is simpley frozen water, she had a whole landscape at her command should things get to out of hand.

However, before they could come up with a combative strategy, they saw Serrakaan walk out of the forest. He looked at the two, and realized that perhapse he underestimated their combined efforts. Still, he could not allow them to escape, so he decided to accelerate things. He crossed his arms and pulled out two of his prestigious long swords, and looked at them. For those who were unaware of his combat techniques, when he revealed both swords, it meant that things were about to get serious.

Ra and Niha wasted no time in revealing their weapons, Niha her trident, and Ra his sword. As they both looked at Serrakaan, they planted their feet into the ground, and bent their knees, ready to spring away at any moment. Serrakaan waited for one of them to strike this time, and he noticed that their anticipation was killing them. Ra and Niha were beginning to sweat, and nobody had even made a move yet. They looked as if time itself was wearing them away, and extracting their energy. Niha was so focused on Serrakaan, that pretty much everything else went still, or dark. Ra was trying to keep a close eye on Niha, hoping that she would be spared Serrakaan's wrath. What seemed like an hour, a whole minute went by, and still no one made a move, until finally, Serrakaan flinched his wrist, spinning his blade. In this act, Serrakaan activated a response in Ra and Niha's mind. They had been ready for the slightest flinch to occure, and when Serrakaan did so, there bodies, almost against their wills, over reacted.

Both of them leapt into the air to avoid a non existent attack, and as they did so, they set Serrakaan up with the perfect attack. As soon as they landed, off balance and unsure, Serrakaan swooped in between then and began a ferocious attack. Blades were spinning almost faster than the eye could see. Niha and Ra were having to almost rely on instinct and luck in order to parry or dodge any attacks.

Niha and Ra could hear the clanging of their blades, but it was rare when the could see them. After about one and a half minutes strait of fighting, flipping, diving, and dodging, Ra felt a tingle go across his stomach. He flipped away from Serrakaan and looked down. He emediately saw a stream of blood flowing from his belly, due to an incredibley close call. If Serrakaan had gone any deeper, Ra would be trying to hold in not only blood, but his internal organs as well.

As he was checking his wound, he soon heard a scream from Niha! He looked and saw Serrakaan had her pinned on her knee holder her trident against both of his swords. He was pushing down on her so hard that Ra heard her knee begin to crack. She screamed in pain as her knee began to slowly imbead itself into the ground, and she became increasingly frightened when her trident began to bend in the middle due to the preasure. Soon, her trident would snapp, and Niha would be killed. With this in mind, a tear went down Niha's face, as she as about to give in to the preasure.

Ra needed to get Serrakaan off of her, but he knew that not a single blow was strong enough to even distract him. He then remembered the violently crazed reaction that Serrakaan had when he exposed him to too much sunlight. Ra then quickly took up his pick-axe, and filled it with his elemental sunlight energy. After about two seconds, he then threw it at Serrakaan. Normally the axe would not even make a dent in his armor, but with the power of sunlight behind it, things may be different.

The axe imbeaded itself into Serrakaan's shoulder with a loud thunk, exploding with the compacted energy. The explosion was not enough to effect Niha, but pleanty to harm Serrakaan. He screamed in pain. The sound of the scream sent chills down Ra's back, but Niha was able to compose herself long enough to bend her body out of range of Serrakaan's attack, and then tilt her trident sideways forcing his blades to follow the curve. His blades slammed against the ground with crushing force, causing a slight tremor. Niha quickly rolled over Serrakaan, back to back, and landed on his other side, and with her trident hand, slammed the bent trident right up into Serrakaan's neck. The blow itself did not cause him much pain at all, but the force did knock him away a little bit. With Serrakaan slightly off balance, and Niha out of the way, Ra threw one of his light grenades at him, and it exploded on impact with his chest. There was a large explosion, and it temporarily blinded both Niha and Ra.

After about ten seconds, Ra and Niha regained their sight, and the sight was disturbing. There was no sign of Serrakaan. He was gone, vanished! Normally Ra would expect someone to be blown away by the blast, and perhapse killed, but they both still felt the cold sensation of his presence, despite the fact that it was a little fainter.

Niha looked at her trident and saw that it was almost completely bent in half. he tried to bend it back, but the metal would not give to her strength. She threw the trident down in frustration, and then, after a moment, leaned down to examine her knee. Ra walked over there and placed his hand on her shoulder.

(Ra) "Are you ok?"

(Niha) "I am fine, just a little bruised. Oh, and exausted."

(Ra) "Yeah, me to. He is still around though, so we need to be ready."

(Niha) "Ra, I gave it my all back there, and it just was not enough. He is just too fast!"

(Ra) "In close quarter combat maybe, but we can take a shot at him from a different angle. He seems to have a vulnerability to my powers, and we can use that to our advantage! That is, if we can gain some distance."

(Niha) "We can! Hold on!"

Niha got up and stretched out her hands toward the snow. She then hardened it, and condensed it into a small platform of ice. She hopped onto it, and turned to Ra.

(Niha) "Get on! I can move this with my powers like a vehicle. It will get alot of distance between us and here in just a small amount of time. Hurry!"

As Ra was about to hop on however, he heard movement in the trees behind him. He turned around and tried to leap away, but he was not fast enough. Serrakaan burst out of the forest and slammed his fist into Ra's stomach, forceing the air in Ra's lungs to explode from his mouth. The blow was so hard that Ra could not move. Ra was in mid air simply balanced upon Serrakaan's fist. Soon Serrakaan withdrew his hand, allowing Ra to land on his feet, and he then kicked him to the other side of the clearing. Niha screamed when she saw this, as Ra almost looked unconscious. Serrakaan paused and looked at Niha; His look was almost taunting, as if he was trying to say, "I warned you to leave."

Niha almost shed a tear, upon when she saw Ra in the corner of her eye grab a grendae, and throw it at Serrakaan. Unfortuneately, Serrakaan saw it coming, and in response, telekinetically grabbed the grenade and cast it into the forest. He then grabbed Ra's pick-axe, tore it out of his shoulder, and threw it spiraling at Ra. Ra leapt out of the way, as the axe slammed into the tree behind him.

The tree trunk exploded under the force by which the axe was thrown. It then crashed down, nearly landing on top of Ra, had he not rolled out of the way in the nick of time. All of the sudden, Ra's grenade blew up inside the woods. The light was not enough to harm Serrakaan, but it did distract him long enough for Ra to grab his sword, leap onto Niha's icey platform, and imnead the sword into it so he would not slip and fall.

(Niha) "Hold on tight!"

With that said, Niha shot her arms forward, and it sent the platform flying forward into the mountains with incredible speed. It reminded Ra of when he was riding in Kelvar's car they were going so fast! This would only be a limited advantage, but maybe, with enough effort, they could still turn the tide in this fight.

Chapter 19 ~ The Last Resort[]

As Ra and Niha zoomed away, gliding on the snow, Serrakaan looked quite frustrated. This fake Toa did not trouble him hardly where melee combat was concerned, but his element was the most effective to use against him. Serrakaan realized that in this next inevitable fight, that he would need to take Ra out of play, so that he could focus his primary attention upon Niha.

As he decided this, Serrakaan began to transform. His feet became clawed talons, and he sprouted large and metal wings from his back that resebled a black eagle before flight. He flapped his wings only once, and he flew strait up into the air at incredible speed. He soon spotted Ra and Niha trying to make their escape, and then he flew at top speed into their direction.

Ra and Niha looked behind them and saw this terror on wings flying towards them. It gave out a loud horrific scream that nearly shattered the ice they were traveling on. Nearby cliffs fell, and Niha had to exert her full concentration on not crashing into the falling ice. As Ra looked back toward Serrakaan, he saw that the beast was gaining on them. He looked at Niha and was trying to tell her to go faster, but one look told him that she was doing the best that she could.

The faster they went, the tighter that Ra had to hold on to his sword in order not to fall off. Niha then yelled at him over her shoulder.

(Niha) "Get ready to jump!!!"

He tried to rip out his sword from the ice, but it was stuck. He pulled as hard as he could, but it would not budge. He looked ahead of them and saw a massive gap that would consume them if they did not leap off the platform. He then infused his weapon with sunlight, hoping that it would burn through the ice. Just as he got it moving, Niha yelled at him to jump.

As they went over the cliff, Niha leapt off the platform, and her trajectory sent her flying to saftey across the black hole. Ra leaned backward, and then leapt forward; There was a little hesitation though as the sword was yanked out of the ice, and this hesitation caused Ra's trajectory to be flawed. He looked ahead, and it was quite clear to him that he would not make it. He was about to shut his eyes so he would not witness his crsh into the side of the icey wall, when suddenly he felt three large punctures go into each shouldrer. Serrakaan had him by the shoulders, clutched in his talons. Ra let out a scream of pain, but in spite of the agony, Serrakaan had halted his fall, and carried him over the gap. Unfortuneately, his newer fate was not much better, and perhapse more fatal.

Serrakaan released Ra, and he fell right into a patch of ice cycles. Many of them shattered on impact, but three of them imbeaded themselves into Ra's body. One in his shoulder, on in his waist, and the other in his thigh, all on the left side. Before Ra could even respond to the pain, he fell into unconsciousness, as blood seeped from each wound, appearing black against the ice.

Niha screamed in horror at the sight of Ra's apparent demise. As Serrakaan landed, he looked at Niha and bared his claws, and spread wide his wings in preperation for their final fight.

Niha was waiting for Serrakaan to strike, but he made not one move, or one flinch. He stood, looking right into her eyes, not that she noticed at first; All that could be seen under the hood was just a black hole. However, as she stared into the darkness under his hood, something strange began to happen. As if she lost all focus, everything around Serrakaan began to fade. The icey climate, the dark sky, the mountains. All of these things began to turn dark, and fade into nothingness. It was as if Serrakaan was all she could see. Suddenly, as she continued in her trance, she saw two blood red orbs slowly reveal themselves underneath the hood. These eyes borred into her mind like a corkskrew. As she gazed into these blood red eyes, she noticed that as the background got darker, the features under his hood became more visible. What she saw next made her shiver in mere disgust and terror.

As the darkness under the hood faded, she saw the visage that had been previousley hidden. The eyes had black pupils that she had never seen before. His face was boned, and black. Black hair flowed over half of his face, partially covering one eye. Sharpened and grey teeth were bared in a menacing and twisted smile, with fangs protruding down to his bottom lip. He had two holes below his eyes that formed his nose, and he had a pointed chin, with black veins protruding.

It was so hideous, and chilling, that Niha felt herself gain the need to vomit, but she was so paralyzed by the fear, that she could make almost no move. However, as she continued her gazed, she could feel something happening to her. She began to feel weak and frail. She felt her knees begin to buckle under her own weight, as if the life was being slowley drained out of her. An unbearable sense of urgency struck her, telling her if that she did not look away, this horrific face would be the last thing she would ever see.

Somehow, as she looked for a way to escape, in the corner of her eye, she saw Ra's sword, glowing with the imbeaded sunlight. This sunlight acted as almost a shinig beacon of hope, as no darkness could cloud it. It was a reminder, that Serrakaan, in all of his power, could still yet be beaten. She then began to force her legs to walk in its direction, and every step closer she was, the more the darkness began to fade. Every step however was harder to take then the last. She heard a whispering voice in her mind telling her that she could not win. Saying that she was doomed to live in this darkness for as long as he chose. Telling her that only in death, there would be an escape.

Finally, as she beant down to grab it, the whispering voice was promising her suffering if she grasped this light. Saying that she would beg at death's door if she continued. In all of her mental suffering, she struggled to reach for the glowing blade. She was determined that she would make him pay, that she would make him pay penance for the suffering he had already inflicted onto others. Finally as she grasped the sword, all of the darkness around her disappeared, and flowed back into Serrakaan hood. Despite the fact that she could no longer see his face, she new that he was quite angered by her defiance and resistance.

She weilded the sword with both hands, and pointed it right at him. She could feel the sunlight energy coarsing through the blade. It gave off a slight warmth that gave her comfort in the biting cold. Serrakaan did not like the look of this, as the sunlight was pulsating through the weapon, and he did not know what would happen should it come into contact with his armor. With this in mind, he drew a long and heavy sword, and when he did, shadow swarmed up the blade like a black mist. After this, Niha, almost as if she had a death wish, charged Serrakaan.

Serrakaan smiled, and as she struck out at him, he deflected the blow. Just as his blade made contact with hers, her sword burst into flame. Shocked, and somwhat worried, Serrakaan aired on the side of caution, and let her take the offensive. She stuck out in a rage that even surprised Serrakaan. She lashed out quickly, and furiously, and several times almost hit Serrakaan. Each and every swing of her sword made the blade more intensified with heat, but for some reason, it did not hurt her hands. As Serrakaan defended himself, he bacame rather annoyed by her assault, and attempted to take the offensive with a swift kick to her chin.

The kick proppelled her into the air, and she did a back flip to regain her balance. Right as she landed Serrakaan was right on top of her. He was lashing out with incredible speed with his sword, each strike he made with the intent on breaking Ra's blade. Niha somehow found the strength to defend herself from these crushing blows, and was still able to lash out as if Serrakaan's assault was meaningless. This defiant act made Serrakaan angry, so he became even more offensive in his attack, and began to swing his wings and his sword in her direction. She leapt over his wings, and when she landed she blocked his sword. As she locked her blade to his, the heat intensified, and it was burning Serrakaan's hands. He emediately blasted Niha away by flapping a gust of wind at her with his wings. She fell backwards and emediately got up and attacked him again. He parried most of her attacks, and then struck at her again with his wings. This time however, she made no effort to dodge, and instead lashed out with her blade and stuck his wing. There was a metal screech, and then part of his wing flew off. Serrakaan screamed in pain and punched her in the chest and sent her flying away again. He sheathed his blade, and he leapt up to a higher presicpice to examine his wing. The sunlight blade seared strait through it, and cut it in half. It was then that Serrakaan realized the potential danger that that sword posed toward him. He decided that he was going to have to end the fight right then and there. He would not stand for a threat of the sort, and he had had enough of her insolence. His wings suddenly folded themselves into his armor, almost as if they had dissappeared, and then, he began his final attack.

He reached out both of his hands, and black lightning flowed from both fingertips and up his arms. As he charged the attack, the near unconscious Ra looked and saw what he was about to do. Ra emediately had a flashback of when Serrakaan used that specific power before, and how unbelievable its destructive potential was. He looked at Niha thinking that she was going to try and evade the attack, but to his horror, she was walking strait towards Serrakaan, with hardly an ounce of concern or worry. Normally against Serrakaan Ra found that commendable, but sometimes, espescially now, fear would be the appropriate response.

Serrakaan had finally charged the attack, and then was about to unleash it on Niha. She was absolutely clueless about what was happening. Ra, despite his absolute pain and agony, leapt to his feet, and jumped right in front of Niha. The next millisecond, a bolt of black lightning surged from Serrakaan's hand.

Niha gasped when she saw what Ra was doing.

(Ra) "Noooooooooo!!!!!!!"

The bolt of lightning slammed into Ra, and there was a massive explosion that swallowed Ra's body. Niha flew backward AGAIN and slammed into the snow. The explosion lasted for about eight seconds, and after it was over, all that was left was a black crator. Ra was no where to be seen.

Niha made no yell, or scream. She just stood there, petrified. Tears ran down her face in a silent torment and rage. She ground her teeth so hard that she thought they would break. She looked at Serrakaan, and saw smoke coming off of his pointer and middle fingers, with his arm still extended. She screamed in a furry of absolute rage and threw the sword at him.

Serrakaan looked at Niha in surprise, but his reaction was too late. The sword flew right through his extended hand, cutting completely off. He screamed in pain as black smoke flowed from the open wound. In an angered retalitaion, he blasted a flaming inferno if white fire at Niha with his other hand. She lifted the water that was in the snow and absorbed the flames, and then she sent a large wave of it at Serrakaan. He leapt through it and in front of Niha. A two pronged claw replaced the severed hand, and he swung it at the defenseless Niha. She leapt away, and sent more water blast toward him. They kept hitting him hard, but they did little damage each time. It just was not enough to hurt him! She needed a larger water source to overwhelm him, but the only one was the ocean. She needed to get there, but how? Wait, the mountains they were on were about ten miles away from the beach. She could almost see it from where she was standing. If she could cause an avalaunche, she could ride it down closer to the beach, and then run the rest of the way there! The only problem se faced was causing an avalaunche. She new large quakes could do it, but how was she going to do that?

She then reasoned that is she was able to get a little snow running down the mountain, then the rest would perhapse follow it. After her last blast toward Serrakaan, she summoned alot of snow from a cliff above to fall toward her position. She kept on and on, until alot of it started coming down hill. It was working, until Serrakaan completely sapped all of her strength from her with a mere gesture. She collapsed to the ground, almost unconscious. She looked at her hands, and saw blood seeping from under her fingernails. Then several drops came out of her nose. Something bad was about to happen.

Serrakaan walked toward her, and raised his claw ready to impale her. He was looking forward to placing her mask as a trophy in his fortress under Destral. However, he savored the moment just a bit too long. Niha looked behind him and saw a large boulder rolling down the hill. She heard a crack underneath them, and when the boulder fell off the upper cliff, and onto the cliff they were on, there was a large shake, and the cliff split off from the rest of the mountain. Serrakaan lost his balance and dissappeared in the falling snow. Niha grabbed onto the cliff edge that fell, and she was almost surfing down the mountain. Soon the excessive snow that collected up there came flowing down, and to the desired effect, caused an avalaunche.

As she was holding on as tightly as she could, Serrakaan leapt from out of the snow onto the rock, and stabbed her shoulder with his claw. She screamed in pain, as she tried to knock him off. She hit him with her fist, but it did no good. Then, she bended the snow in front of her to become sleek ice, which propelled them strait out over the edge of the mountain. The rock spun both of them off, and they hit the snow beneath them. She could barely get up, with blood spewing out if her wound. The avalaunche was moving fast behind them, and there was nothing she could do to stop it. She accepted that this would possibly be the last thing she saw. Serrakaan got up and walked toward her with his claw barred for the kill, when the avalaunche hit, and covered them both!

Niha closed her eyes as she tumbled with the massive slide of snow, ice, and rocks. She felt no strike from Serrakaan, but just the biting chill that she was being submerged in was enough to disorient her. She was being spunn, whirled, thrown, and twisted this way and that, unable to even stop herself or grabb onto something. Within all the chaos, she struck her head against a rock, and it sent her into unconsciousness.

Serrakaan quickley proppelled himself out of the avalaunche, and onto a high cliff. He looked down for his prey, but the moving, destructive, natural, force made it difficult to see anything at all. He had lost Niha to that massive natural power. He clenched his fist with anger, as he had never actually lost a target that he was willing to chase. His only consolation was that he had killed the one he had come for. There was no way that Ra could have survived that bolt of black lightning. Unfortunately, despite the odds, it was possible for Niha to have survived the avalaunche, even combined with the wounds he had inflicted on her. All the same, this loss was discomforting. However, he did manage to grabb a trophy from both victims. He took Niha's bent Trident, and Ra's pickaxe. Soon, after he had surveyed the area one more time, Serrakaan left to return to his fortress under Destral.

After a long, and concentrated teleport, Serrakaan appeared inside his throne room on Destral. He walked down several hallways, and entered his trophy room. He placed his trophies in seperate glass cases, and then surveyed the room. To see all these trinkets made him smile devilishly as he walked out of the room, and back to his throne room. He sat on his throne and began to think. He did not like having to personally settle scores with beings he felt were waisted time. Ra and Niha posed no emediate threat, and he was frustrated that it took so long for him to slay one, and leave the other to die. They did not deserve his personal attention, and he did not appreciate going all the way to the Northern Continent to kill them. After a while he reasoned that he needed a proxy; Someone to take on these tasks so he could spend his hours on more important matters.

It was this idea that sparked a very devious desire, to make someone his heir, or his successor. Someone who would have his powers, his appearance, his goals. A sentinal, a servant, an acolyte. It was then that he decided to find this particular being, and mold him into the perfect Assassin. He needed someone of a powerful or intelligent race. He thought for a few minutes, and then decided. After his decision was made, he walked to his personal quarters to sleep. He could not travel there today. After all, it was already dawn, and Versuva was quite far away.


On the Northern Continent.

When the sun rose, Niha awoke all the sudden to find herself hanging in a tree. Surrounding her, was a huge amount of snow that had not been there the night before. She bent foward and lifted herself to a sitting position on the branch. After she dusted the snow off of her, she leapt from the branch and onto the ground, but when she landed, she felt this intense surge of pain coarse through her body. She yelled in agony, and fell on the ground. She clenched her teeth in pain, and had to stifle her screams and groans. Finally, she raised up to examine her wounds; The only problem was that she was so beaten up, that she could not tell weather the injuries were from Serrakaan or from the avalaunche.

She had a gash torn all the way up her right leg from her calf to her thigh. Her right arm hung loose, and was completely engulfed in pain, so she assumed it was broken in multiple areas. Her left shoulder had a large hole from front to back where Serrakaan had stabbed her. Her smallest finger on her left hand was bent completely backwards, and her hair was also mostly gone from when Serrakaan cut it. She also felt multiple bruises and cuts all over her back and down her legs. Also her mask was cracked down the middle, with one of her eyes bleeding. All in all, she was lucky to even be alive.

She laid back, not even sure how she could get back to the village. One, she could hardly move, two, she did not know where she was, and three, she would freeze to death even if she could walk. She pretty much gave up all hope. Also, the one person she felt she could trust was killed by a black monster that also tried to kill her, and probably would if it was still around.

All of these things ran through her mind, until she heard the noise of footsteps coming toward her. She looked up and saw the last thing she wanted to see. Despite the fact that her vision was blury, she could make out the shape of the person, and it looked exactly like Serrakaan, robes, hood, hight and all. She let out a sigh of despair, and she began to cry. As she sobbed, she suddenly began to feel sleepy. Then, out of nowhere, she passed out again to the sound of the footsteps halting next to her body.

Later that evening.

Jarodin woke up in his room very frightened. The last thing he remembered was that he pretty much almost died. The Matoran brought him into the fortress and attended to his wounds, but their help was hardly enough. It seemed as though it was only a matter of time before he faded into death's cold embrace. But as he was fading, he felt a powerful presence in the room. He did not see who it was, but whoever it was, this being placed his hand onto Jarodin's wound, and another onto his head, and began to heal him. "It must have been a dream." He thought, but when Jatreroden looked at his wound, it was completely healed, with little more than a slight scabb. He could hardly beleive his eyes.

He got up and moved around. He felt quite sore, and when he looked in the mirror, he saw an exit wound from where the sword penetrated! How was it possible to be healed from such a fatal injury? Who could have done it? Why did they see fit to heal Jarodin? All of these questions he continued to ponder, until his thoughts were inturrupted by a knock on his door.

Before he could reply, Turaga Ulnar walked in, and expressed great surprise when he saw him.

(Ulnar) "Jarodin! You are awake! Thank Mata Nui! It must have been a miracle."

(Jarodin) "Thank you Turaga, but I am not sure if Mata Nui had anything to do with it. Someone visited me in the night, and healed me, I think. Do you remember seeing anyone?"

(Ulnar) "Why no. Telnor and Tenecius were outside your door the entire time. Nobody went in to visit you. How could you have been healed by anyone though? You must have had a dream."

Before Jarodin could summon a reply, Telnor burst in and hugged Jarodin in relief.

(Telnor) "You're alive!!!!! Thank Mata Nui!"

(Jarodin) "Ugh! Alive, but very sore."

(Telnor) "Oh! Sorry! Haha! I am just so glad to see you bro!"

(Jarodin) "Bro? What does that mean?"

(Telnor) "It means brother! Like Toa brothers! You know!"

(Jarodin) "I somehow don't think we are really Toa material after last night."

(Telnor) "Come on, when we are Toa one day, that will be a passing memory."

(Jarodin) "Yeah, like that will ever happen. But anyway,we can always hope."

(Telnor) "Oh! Speaking of Toa, Niha came walking into the fortress an hour ago!" Come on!"

All three of them began to walk down to the lobby down a flight of stairs. When they reached the lobby, Niha was sitting with Tenecius talking. When they got down there, Jarodin exclaimed.

(Jarodin) "Niha! I am so glad you're alright! Where is Ra?"

Niha looked down, as if she had been crying, and Tenecius looked at Jarodin and shook his head. Ulnar placed his hand onto Jarodin's shhoulder.

(Ulnar) "He did not make it Jarodin. I am sorry."

Jarodin almost shed a tear. He was horrified by the news.

(Jarodin) "How did...... I mean, who?"

(Ulnar) "It was the same monster who stabbed you. However there will be a time to grieve for Ra, but it is not now. We must make sure Niha is well taken care of. We are having a memorial tomorrow for him Jarodin. Hold your feelings of the matter until then."

(Jarodin) "Ok. Niha, I am so glad you are ok. I didn't mean to bring anything hurtful up."

(Niha) "It is ok. It is not your fault."

(Ulnar) "Niha has a few scratches from her fight with the monster, but other than that she is fine. She said that she felt alot worse earlier this morning, but that she saw someone come and lay hands on her."

(Jarodin) "You to? I had the same thing happen! Who was it?"

(Niha) "I am not sure Jarodin. All I know is that he looked astonishingly similar to the monster that I had fought last night."

(Jarodin) "You are kidding! You don't think it was him do you?"

(Niha) "Absolutely not. He would have killed me if had such a chance."

(Jarodin) "How did you beat him? Or get away from him?"

(Niha) "Those are tales for another time my friend. After the memorial, I may tell you. But I can not think about it right now."

And so Niha went upstairs and lay down in one of the guest rooms, waiting to get ready for the speech she would present at tomorrow's memorial. The image of what Ra suffered still scarred her mind as she tried to sleep. His final death left her without any hope for his return. She would never forget this brutal and evil act by Serrakaan. She swore to herself that one day, she would find him, and exact her vengance on him. This was not over.

Meanwhile at the HQ of the Patrons of the Dark.

Zorron paced back and forth in his quarters. The longer he waited, the more desperate he became to steal Alluksonnion's new staff. He was so angry that he did not have that power, and he would kill, steal, or cheat his way to get it. Once that fool Jeddburgh had left, Alluksonnion went on and on about how he would use this staff to change the world. He even relinquished his sworn vengance against the one to send their organization to the deapths, Irostenese. This was maddening, however, Zorron had a plan. A plan where Alluksonnion would be killed, and he would be elected the leader of the organization. Then no one would be in their way for total dominion of the world. Only the Makuta, he reasoned, would be a problem. However, their hands would soon be full, as there was a new organization called the League of Six Kingdomes that was quickly rising. He knew that the Brotherhood would have to keep an eye on them, so this was the perfect opportunity to sieze control, and catch the Brotherhood off guard. All he had to do was wait for his plan to go into motion, and then who would be able to stop him. The part he looked forward to most however, was the slow death he would impose onto Katronstan. Oh how he would torment him. It was going to be so soon! This would be a pivital momment in history!

Later that same night on Versuva.

Two important dignitaries walked the halls of a large fortress near the Great tower of Versuva. They were on a mission presented to them by the Council of Eight reguarding a new threat toward the Mersions as a whole, as well as Versuva itself.

They were going to a certain office chamber to discuss these matters with another Mersion representative. He was the one who was usually looked to in times of stress, and the council did not speak of him often. However, a threat known as the League of Six Kingdomes began to demand occupancy for their armies on Versuva, and it was a matter very delicate to the council. They wished to be a nuetral species, not wishing to be involved with other people's wars, or battles. It was their decision to bring in this particular representative, who had a scetchy reputation.

He has remained almost anonomous to all Mersions except for the Council, and its representatives. The Council did not prefer to utilize his impressive skills to often, but they could not deny that the time for his abilities was at hand. This representative was almost non existent. He has no records of an earlier life on Versuva, and his past has never been documented anywhere else. He had no friends, only guards, and servants. He was practically the Council's secret ace in the hole when matters of a possible war arose.

His talents were both secret, and mysterious, which is why he was never consulted unless it was absolutely necessary. Whenever there was a large or destructive threat, political, or personal, and he was told of it, the problem in turn would simply just go away. It is unknown how he does it, who he contacts, or what means he uses to do either, but he has never failed to impress.

As they approached the offices, both dignitaries spoke with one another.

(Dignitary 1) "I am nervous. The Council said that he was a very intimidating person, and I for one have not heard of him until yesterday."

(Dignitary 2) "I know, me too! But they say he is the only person we can turn to without going into all out war with this being who calls himself Khalma. If he can solve our problem, then I am willing to feel the intimidation."

(Dignitary 1) "Very well, how about you do all the talking, and I will help out with the facts on the situation."

(Dignitary 2) "Ok, sounds good. Now be quiet, we are almost there."

As they turned the corner, they saw two guards standing like statues on either side of a doorway. These guards themselves were very impressive, and frightening. They bore red hooded robes, combined with silver armor. They wore a mask under their hoods, and their eyes could not be seen. They were the same hight as the Mersions, but it was unclear if they were actually Mersion in species. Either way, they stopped the representatives by crossing two very long silver spears before the doorway.

(Dignitary 2) "We have an appointment assigned by the Council. Let us pass."

As he said this, he winked at his partner, as the guards parted their spears, and the door opened. He felt power giving orders to those intimidating guards, but he felt completely stripped of it when he saw the "Representative."

As they entered the large circular room, his eyes missed the red rugs, the large window, a black couch positioned in front of a desk, and the impressive signs of office displayed on the walls. All his eyes saw was the Mersion sitting in a large chair behind the black desk.

When the door shut behind him, he jumped a bit, as he kept his eyes on the representative. This Mersion rose from his chair. He was taller than average, and his robes were black, and indicated royalty, or high office. He had metalic silver armor that was practically reflective it was so well kept. His mask was sharply edged, and rare in style, as he had never seen one like it.

Strangely, he felt a strange fear about this Mersion, even though there was nothing visibley frightening about him. But just looking into his bright, pale blue eyes made a shiver go down his spine. However, when the Mersion began to speak, his voice had a soft, almost hypnotic lull to it, that extended a little comfort.

(The Representative) "I am glad to see that the Council has not forgotten about me. Please sit."

Both Mersions moved forward and sat on the couch that sat before the desk. The friendly smile offered by their host made them less edgy.

(Dignitary 2) "It is a pleasure to meet with you sir. However, the circumstances are not what we would like them to be."

(The Representative) "I assumed as much, due to the visit on such short notice."

(Dignitary 2) "I am afraid our island is soon to come under siege, and we need you to, um, do what you can to prevent that, or make it go away."

(The Representative) "You make me sound like some sort of spy, or assassin. Haha! Tell me more. Who is responsible for this mess?"

(Dignitary 1) "A being who is named Khalma. He is one of the six beings who make up a rising organization known as the League of Six Kingdomes. He is blockading the island for his own purposes."

(Dignitary 2) "He has prompted the anger of the Council, and they said you could take care of this. However, it is a difficult matter, due to the fact that not one being can make an army dissapear."

(The Representative) "Is that so? Let me inform you, that the power of politics only goes so far. Sometimes force is necessary to utilize in a situation such as this. If this Khalma has not made measures to abide with the Council, than I will take it upon myself to eliminate the problem."

(Dignitary 2) "You can do that? You do understand that it is an entire army?"

(The Representative) "I do. However, my dealings afford me a great deal of authority in some rather, hidden circles. I will pull the strings necessary to get this problem to vanish. Inform the Council that their request is accepted. However, it may take a month or two in order to deal with this issue. None the less, it will be done."

(Dignitary 1) "Thank you very kindly, but I am afriad we must depart now. The Council will wish to hear of this emediately."

(The Repesentative) "Well then you may go inform them, but I wish to speak with your friend in private first."

The dignitary left the room, and waited outside. His friend was quite concerned about this meeting, but he just pushed through it.

(The Representative) "What is your name?"

(Dignitary 2) "Vicktern sir. What is it that you wanted to ask of me?"

(The Representative) "You seem afraid of me. Why?"

(Vicktern) "You just have such a reputation, and I am just unsettled by it. I mean no disrespect."

(The Representative) "Well, I am none the less impressed with your work. You are the only being I know who has ever maintained their composure while briefing me. You should be praised."

(Vicktern) I was not going to dissapoint or miss represent the Council. Whenever they need me to do something, I will do it without hesitation, not matter what fear or concern I have."

(The Representative) "That determination is impressive. Were you in the military?"

(Vicktern) "Oh no. I am not a good fighter. I merely focus on brain work. However, it has crossed my mind that I would like to be able to defend myself."

(The Representative) "You seem to have alot of potential. That determination can achieve great things Vicktern. You interest me. Tell me, when do you have time away from your business?"

(Vicktern) "Tomorrow I take my leave."

(The Representative) "Well then Vicktern, I would like to arrange a meeting with you again. I feel there are some things you may be inclined to hear. Tomorrow at dusk, here?"

Vicktern was a bit surprised by the Representative's interest in him, but this made him feel very prestigious, to be able to have a friendly meeting with this legend would be an honor!

(Vicktern) "Yes! Yes, I would like to! I will arrive here at dusk tomorrow!"

(The Representative) "Very good. I will see you then. You may go now if you wish. I do not mean to detain you."

(Vicktern) "One momment. A personal question if I may?"

(The Representative) "Of course."

(Vicktern) "Wht is your name? I would like to know, if that is alright sir."

(The Representative) "That is quite alright. You have a right to know seeing as we will meet again soon."

(Vicktern) "Well?"

(The Representative) "Well Vicktern, I have been called many names, and I have many titles. But you may call me Necroseniss."

(Vicktern) "Necroseniss? That is an interesting name. I have never heard it before."

(Necroseniss) "I am not surprised to hear that. It has been many years since someone has used my actual name."

(Vicktern) "Very well. Thank you Necroseniss! I shall see you tomorrow. Good night!"

(Necroseniss) "Good Night Vicktern."

As Vicktern left, he took a quick glance backward as the door was shutting, and he saw Necroseniss gain a frightening grinn on his face, and his eyes, oh his eyes seemed to peirce his heart like an arrow! It was then that Vicktern wondered, what exactly had he gotten himself into?

The next day, on the Northern Continent.

The clouds were gathering in a very dark and depressing manner. All the day long people were prepairing for an important memorial that was soon to take place. The gloom was very noticable, and saddening. Everyone just stuck to their business, and kept to themselves. Nobody spoke in happiness, or in sincerety. It was going to be a long day. After about three hours of preperations, the funeral was about to begin. Ulnar was at the pulpit on a large rock in front of an empty casket, waiting to present a speech. Telnor and Jarodin were sitting on the front row near Niha, who kept to herself. Telnor noticed that she had cut and fixed her hair from where Serrakaan attempted to behead her. She looked very beautiful, but very sad.

As people began to arrive, such as Tenecius, Kollus, and Terreskah, Telnor noticed that a very famous person walked down the isle and took a seat near the front. It was Kelvar! She had come to his funeral, and she had dressed in a black dress to emphasise her grief. Telnor never really thought about it, but Kelvar was absolutely stunning to look at. She had such beautiful silver armor, and deep blue eyes. He recieved a little comfort from the appearances of her and Niha, but then someone else walked to the back and took a seat, and it was someone that Telnor had never seen before.

He was tall, and wore black robes with silver armor. He had a sharply crafted mask, and he was rather intimidating in appearance. But when Telnor looked into his pail blue eyes, he felt a surge of fear in his chest. He turned around and shrunk into his seat. He then thought for a momment. He had never even seen this person before, so why on earth was he so afraid of him? Telnor recognized him to be a Mersion, as it was rare to see one away from Versuva, but Telnor still wondered, why was he there? Who was he?

Finally, after about fifteen more minutes of waiting, Ulnar tapped his staff on the rock, and made a resinating hum in the small alcove. Everyone looked up to him, and listened.

(Turaga Ulnar) "I have known many Toa, and many honorable beings in my time, but never one exactly like Ra. Many Toa are either to pridful to be involved with Matoran, or to busy to bother with them. Ra was the kind who made time to spend with the people he was protecting. He showed care, and affection to us all, and laid asside his position in society to establish better friendships. That was a very humble act, and one that gained him much. Many of us had thought of him as a good friend, an ally, and maybe more than that. He left us a hero, and his sacrifice has left us with amazing gratitude. I pray he is now in a better place. As you can see, there is a casket at the bottom of my platform here. You may place things in there that you would like to send away with him, as we release these memories into the silver sea."

Several people placed different, sentimental items inside, and some wept at the casket for a few minutes. Others sat where they were and did not bother to do either. Finally, after about ten solumn minutes, Ulnar asked the crowd.

(Ulnar) "Would anyone care to share a few words before we depart?"

No one walked up there for an entire minute. People put their heads down, and others expressed doubts that they could compose themselves in order to do so. Ulnar almost sent them home, when Kelvar stood up, and walked up to the platform. She looked out to the crowd with a tear running down her mask.

(Kelvar) "I feel a bit ashamed. Out of all of you, I was probably the one to know him the least. I never fought at his side, never spent days with him, but I did spend one afternoon with him. In a whirlwind of circumstances, I met Ra during a race, and it is something I will never forget. I assumed at first he only wanted to know me because of some fame or admiration, but I was arrogant in that reguard. He and I spent one afternoon together, and it was clearly his intention to become my friend, and not a fan. He expressed genuine care for me, and my past. He showed me that there are people out there who really do see past the fame and fortune, and see the person. I was so happy to meet someone like that, and I am so grieved that he is gone. I pray that we all take from his life what he gave us, and give it to others. Kindness, happiness, respect, and as I said, genuine care."

She acted like she was going to say more, but she stopped herself, and walked off the platform. She then took a white rose, kissed it, and placed it in the cakset. She then walked out of the alcove, and onto the beach. Niha rose and followed her. As she walked past the back row, she looked into the eyes of the Mersion, and felt an emediate hatred. For no reason. She continued to walk out, and caught up with Kelvar.

(Niha) "Did he really mean that to you?"

(Kelvar) "He did."

Kelvar fell to her knees and began to cry, and Niha knelt down, and put her arm around her, and they wept together.

After an hour, everyone left the premesis, and the casket was left for retrieval later by a few Matoran, so they could send it out to sea the next day. Only one being was sitting in the benches, and that was the Mersion. As Ulnar walked out, he stopped and spoke to him.

(Ulnar) "Thank you for honoring him with your presence. What is your name may I ask?"

(Mersion) "Necroseniss."

(Ulnar) "How did you know him?"

(Necroseniss) "I knew him as a Toa, and a warrior. He was very skilled in my experience with him. It is such a shame to see him gone."

Ulnar patted him on the shoulder, and felt a repulsion go through his body. He released Necroseniss' shoulder, and hastily walked away. Necroseniss stood and walked over to the casket and took a red rose from his robe, and placed it into the casket. It had a drop of blood going down its green vine, as he turned and left premisis, with a very demonic smile spreading from cheek to cheek.

As the day grew on, Telnor's dissapointments got bigger and bigger. As it turned out, it was time for Jarodin to return to his home island. Telnor said his goodbyes, and they embraced eachother for a small time. When they were getting on the boat, Jarodin began to exclaim how Telnor needed to visit.

(Jarodin) "I will miss you. I may be able to return next year, and I might have a girl with me. She is very pretty. Her name is Galika. I am thinking I like this one."

(Telnor) "Well I am sure she is very pleasant then. I hope to see ya next year my friend. Goodbye, and safe travel. My Mata Nui watch over you."

(Jarodin) "Goodbye my friend, right back at ya."

Finally, Jarodin departed, and Telnor returned home. It was a long day for them all, and it would be a while before they recieved any rest. There would be some stunning reprocussions from the League of Six Kingdomes, not that they new it yet.

Later on the Island of Stelt.

Ra opened his eyes, and found himself staring up at the stars. He took a large gasp for air, remembering what should have been his deathstroke. He looked around, and felt of his arms and legs to see if he was actually still alive, and not in some netherworld, and as it turned out, he was alive. He rose to his feet and examined his wounds. They were almost completely healed! He was just wondering how long he had been out, and suddenly a voice behind him said.

(Makuta) "You have been asleep for two days."

He turned around, startled, and almost pannicked. He looked at the being who spoke, and it resembled Serrakaan, only his robes were in red, and not black.

(Ra) "Who are you? How did I get here?"

(Makuta) "I am a Makuta. But you may call me Terradon, for all it is worth. I teleported you here, and healed you of your wounds inflicted by Serrakaan."

(Ra) "Why?"

(Terradon) "Your life was almost unjustly taken. Yours, and Niha's. But I came and spared both of you. Why! You ask? Well, your part in this world is not over. You have most likely many things to do before you are to be taken from this world. I made sure that you did not leave prematurly."

(Ra) "Thanks, I guess. Where am I? Where is Niha?"

(Terradon) "You are on the island of Stelt. A good place to start your new life. And as for Niha, she is moving on to other places, in search of some sort of vengance, or cause. Your death really brought out a hero in her."

(Ra) "Death? New life? No! If she thinks I am dead I have to find her!"

(Terradon) "No. That would not bode well. Your memorial was today. If she saw you now, it would be to much for her. Right now, the best thing to do is to begin living a newer and different life."

(Ra) "How am I to do that? I have no money, no weapons, no friends!"

(Terradon) "You are correct. But these should start you off well."

Ra examined the bag Terradon threw to the ground. He walked over and opened it. It was packed with hundereds of widgets!"

(Ra) "How did you......"

(Terradon) "A Makuta is always well prepaired. Here, besides the currency, you will need this."

He took out a long, and beautiful sword. Ra hesitated at first, but then he took hold of it, and realized its speacial features.

(Ra) "It is so light! Where did you get this?"

(Terradon) "I made it. Now listen. This sword is very sharp, and very dangerous. It is impervious to both magnetics, and heat. It can also channel, and store your unique elemental energies. Use it wisely."

(Ra) "I cannot thank you enough!"

(Terradon) "There is one way to thank me. Continue your attempts to be a Toa. Be an example to the others. That is how you may thank my services."

(Ra) "I will!"

(Terradon) "Before I leave, I have some things to say. Remember the three virues, and follow them with a lively passion. Do this, and you can overcome any evil. Also, you never met me, I never gave you that sword, or the money. You have never met a Makuta. Understand?"

(Ra) "Yes. Once again, thank you for everything."

(Terradon) "Do not waste what has been given you Ra. There is a town two miles east of here. Go there, and you will find transportation. I must go. Goodbye, and fair thee well."

As Terradon said this, he suddenly vanished into a black smoke, and was gone. Ra shrugged his shoulders and began walking towardthe town. It was time for him to start his new adventure.

Three weeks later, at an unknown location.

A hooded and robed character knelt before Serrakaan. Serrakaan walked toward him and placed his sword upon his shoulder. Serrakaan then began to speak in a very devilish voice.

(Serrakaan) "You will serve your purpose well. You will be trained to rise above fear, and restraint. Fear will be your ally, and I will teach you to use it. You will become my right hand in the battle against the corruptions of this world. You will obey me, and any treachery will be met with death's embrace. You will be trained to be my proxy in this world. You will lead my forces, and you will destroy all who stand in the way. You will join me in the quest to wipe out these infernal organizations who claim dominance. The future holds much bloodshed, and your task is not simple. You will infiltrate, deceive, and thrive, and at the opportune time, you will anihilate. This is your task, my Apprentice. One day, for your loyalty, you will stand at my side, and revel in the dominance we will establish. Do you accept this fate?"

(Vicktern) "I do, my Master."

(Serrakaan) "Then with this, you have commited your life into my hands. You will be called Ulletsiarron. The right hand of the Blood Summoner, and Executioner of His will. Now, it is time to begin, for at the end of this journey, lies our victory."

The End.[]