Skyfire Chapter 22: TYRANT

Thunderbolt and I rushed forwards into the massive building. It was pretty much the same as all the others. Large, nondescript and made pretty much entirely out of concrete slabs. The interior wasn’t much to speak about either. We entered through what appeared to be a lobby, and walked past a desk with a computer on it. It was empty, go figure, and there were security cameras in pretty much every corner of the room. We ran out of that room pretty quickly, and into the room behind it. It was absolutely massive, and entirely empty. I had a very bad feeling about this.

Almost immediately after we had come into the room, Thunderbolt and I were surrounded. I had no idea where they’d all come from, but there were fifteen soldiers with some pretty dangerous looking weapons surrounding us.  They formed a large circle around us, backing up to where they thought they would be out of the reach of our lightning. Miracle should be nearby now, probably just outside where we’d just come in from, and I seriously hoped she’d wait until we finished off the soldiers. A strange clicking sound approached us, and I spun around to see a very scary sight. In a long black coat just like the one Streamline had been wearing, was the most powerful man in the country, Alphonse Harrison. The clicking would be his cane. Thunderbolt turned around as well, and sparks flickered around her arms as she saw him. He smiled at the two of us, and stepped through the encirclement to stand in front of me.

“You know, I expected to see Walter here. I guess he’s too much of a coward to fight me himself. Oh wait, you’re the one who let him die, aren’t you? My, my Edward. Surely you have enough blood on your hands,” He walked towards me, lifting off my mask and using his cane to swipe my legs out from under me. All he managed to do was make me stumble.
“On your knees, boy!” he swung his cane into my face, knocking me to the ground. Riley helped me off of the ground and I was able to stand on my own within seconds. He swung his cane again, this time going for Riley, but I grabbed it before it hit her, pulling it out of his grip. He grinned, and lunged forwards to grab Riley’s arm, pulling her out of the guard’s encirclement, toying with his knife in his free hand. He spun the blade between his fingers, before kicking Riley onto her knees. He raised the blade above his head, still spinning, and suddenly caught the hilt in his hand.

I readied myself to pull a lightning bolt out of the sky to strike him, and May burst into the room. Riley looked at the two of us with fear-filled and teary eyes, and he cackled. He could see her fear just as well as we could, and he had the final say in what happened to her. He was relishing in his power, and Riley struggled to try and shock him, so she could be free. It didn’t work, and he drove his blade into her back. Riley gasped, blood spilling out of her mouth as a small trickle ran out onto the blade. She fell to the ground, and something clicked inside me. I switched my grip on the cane so I was holding its handle and filled it with electricity. Lightning exploded out of it, smacking it into the guards and knocking them out one by one as I hit them. I heard an audible cracking as I broke a man’s ribs with the sheer force of the hit. May ran up next to me, horribly worried.
“Get her out of here, I’ll deal with the rest,” I ordered her, and she listened, scooping up Riley’s lifeless form and running away as fast as she possibly could.

“Well done Edward. I can’t say the same for them though,” He pulled out a myriad of knives, throwing them all to land perfectly in each man’s chest. He killed them all.
“Well, that certainly isn’t going to help your case. Penelope was right about you,” I struck a chord in him, and his grin faltered for a second.
“She doesn’t know a damn thing,” he reached into his coat once again, pulling out yet another blade.
“Now, how’re we doing this Edward? Are you going to fight me?” He threw off his coat, revealing the innumerable knives strapped to his chest, and drawing one for his empty hand. I looked at the cane I had taken from him. He had knives, and I had a glorified stick. Great.

“I guess that’s a yes,” he grinned. What was with this dude and grinning?

“You’re a crazy bastard,” I ran forward, smashing his cane into his knife as he tried blocked it. He held his larger knife loosely with one hand, and pressed against me with tremendous force. He was fighting like a fencer, and he kept a small dagger in one hand, just in case. He swung around from the right, and knocked the cane from my hand. I preferred not using it anyway, my fists were all I needed.

He swung at me again, narrowly missing my head as I ducked beneath his blade. I really wish I had my helmet. He followed up his swing with a quick thrust from the dagger, catching my right arm with a glancing blow, and making a small tear in my suit. He was going to hit hard. He took another swing at me, and I dodged again, this time making sure to get out of the way of any follow-up attacks. We were both adapting to the other’s fighting style as the fight went on, and he seemed to be doing better than I was. I was dodging, waiting for an opening to take a punch, but he didn’t seem to be willing to give me that option. He’d just murdered my best friend right in front of me, and I was incredibly angry. I had to be cold now, cold and calculated. I’d failed one part of my promise to Walter, and I didn’t plan on failing the rest. I needed information, and then I needed to kill this son of a bitch.

“So! While you so utterly fail at fighting me, what would you like to know?” He asked. He took a thrust at my chest, and I had to quickly project an electromagnetic field to stop him from stabbing me. I didn’t give a shit about fighting dirty.
“My father. I can assume that you had some role in his death?” I’d read all the information Walter had gathered, and it really didn’t flatter Alphonse.
“I drove the blade through his heart myself kid,” he swung at me again, and I caught his blade, twisting it around in his wrist as far as I could, until I heard the audible cracking of his bones. I watched it fall from his hand, the blade covered in blood from my own hand. A burst of electromagnetism sent it flying away, out of Alphonse’s reach.
“Ooh, it seems I’ve hit a nerve,” He grinned as his arm fell limp. No point in using it with such a fucked-up hand, and so he lunged at me with his knife once again. I couldn’t grab another blade, or we’d both be down two hands, and that wouldn’t make for a good fight. Besides, he was holding something back. I went in for a punch, speeding in close to him as my fist connected with his chin, and knocked him back onto the ground. His lip started to bleed as he got up, still grinning, and he lunged at me with his knife once again.

“Now, who was the girl I just stabbed? Was that one of Walter’s daughters?” He said, swinging around with his blade once again. He swiped me across the cheek, not deep enough to break through into my mouth, but deep enough to leave a nasty scar, well, if I couldn’t get to Miracle fast enough. The fight was boring me fast, so I decided to spice it up a bit.

A lightning bolt shot out of my wounded hand, striking Alphonse in the chest, and sending him flying into a wall.

“It was a surprisingly good cut you know, right between the vertebrae, a perfectly severed spinal cord,” He pulled himself up off the wall, and drew another knife in his wounded hand. He had a crazed look in his eyes, like the pain was nothing compared to the thrill of the fight, and he ran at me. I healed up my own hand, and punched into his jaw before he could take another swing.
“This is getting boring fast, Edward. All you do is punch. I want you to dance,” Shards of sharpened metal floated up behind him. Just fucking great.

The blades suddenly sprung into motion, soaring through the air. I stumbled as I tried to run from where I was standing, and one of them caught me on the shoulder. It wriggled as it tried to bury itself into my skin, and cut through the TS Armour, but it wasn’t breaking through. The blade was too jagged for a clean cut. I thought about grabbing it, but after what he’d done to my hand before, I doubted it would be worth it. The blades kept chasing me as I zig-zagged through the room, trying to break the excellent tracking they had on me, while also watching out for anything else Alphonse was going to try. He was grinning. Kneeling down where he’d hit the wall and just grinning. I needed to punch that off of his face. I dropped down to the ground, spinning on one-foot mid-step, and using one hand to launch myself forwards as I ran from his blades. Running made me realise how big the room was, and closing in on Alphonse made me realise how angry I was. He seemed to get an idea of what I was planning as I sprinted towards him, and the knife sat on my shoulder stopped wriggling, and started slamming into my back. Steadily, more and more blades pounded against me, and Alphonse’s smirk grew larger and larger.

The moment I reached him, I was holding him by the collar.

“You killed Riley,” I spat into his face.
“That I did,” he laughed, and I lowered one hand from his collar, and slammed it into his stomach.
“Why?” I asked. I was gritting my teeth together. I felt angrier than ever before. I guess the adrenaline of the fight had just masked it.
“Because I could,” I slammed my fist into his stomach again, following through with my knee.
“Oh come on, Edward. You can’t seriously have thought I needed a reason. It’s the same thing with all those bombs,” he sniggered, laughing less now that his stomach would be so severely bruised, but still grinning. His eyes looked bloodshot. Was he high?
“What bombs?” I asked. I was tempted to throw another punch into his stomach, but I didn’t want him unable to speak, not yet anyway.
“Those ones I detonated earlier this year? It did make the news,” he said rather matter-of-factly. I punched him in the stomach again.
“I’ve had enough of talking. I want to get back to the stabbing,” he said. He kicked against me, knocking me to the ground.

“The glow’s pretty interesting though. I didn’t know you could do that with your eyes,” he said, tossing a knife at my head. I barely managed to dodge having a chunk of my ear taken off.
“Bored, bored, bored, bored, BORED!” He shouted, throwing more and more blades at me. I dodged a few, but decided it would be smarter to just stop him. I sprung up, and lightning flew from my fingertips, crackling and arcing wildly as it flew between us. He started to stumble, shrieking and cackling as the lightning flew into his body. He contorted as his muscles suddenly tightened, and he screamed.

Smoke rose off his body as I stopped the flow of the lightning into him, and he fell to his knees. He stared down at the ground with the same wide-eyed grin he’d been sporting for our whole fight. Sweat dripped onto the ground as he stared, and suddenly, he lunged at me. He knocked me to the ground with the force of his body smashing into me. He stood above me, and planted a foot on my chest. He stamped down on my chest, toying with his knife once again. He looked like he’d shrugged off everything I’d thrown at him, but I could tell he was hurting.

“My turn!” He screamed, slamming his foot into my chest once again, and following up with a kick to my ribs. He slammed his foot into me over and over again, careful placing his kicks to break every bone he came into contact with, and to slightly overlap with the last broken rib. One kick hit with more force than any other, and part of my now horrifically broken ribcage bent back into my lung. The feeling of blood beginning to trickle into my lung was ugly, and enough to entice me to get off of the ground. I grabbed his leg as the next kick came in, and pulled it out from under him. He slammed into the ground hard, but he still kept his maniacal grin.
“Asshole,” I said, as I pushed myself off of the ground. He kicked at my legs to try and knock me over, but a lightning strike stopped him in his tracks. I’d hurt him, and he knew his limits.

A horrific piercing pain exploded into the forefront of my mind, as Alphonse’s cackling returned.
“Oh, the little boy can’t handle the pain?” He stood up, and grabbed my throat while I was incapacitated.
“That’s what it feels like kid, when someone drives a knife into your skull,” I clutched my head as the pain spread. I wanted to scream, but I wanted to win even more. This guy was a bastard alright. I doubt he’d survive in a prison cell more than a night. I moved my hands down to his wrist, squeezing it with all my might, hoping that he might loosen his grip. Turns out, that was a bad idea. All I managed to do was aggravate him, and he pressed his blade to my chest.

“Now, you’re going to join that friend of yours. But after all the pain you caused me, I’m going to take my time,” He dragged his blade down my chest, piercing through the suit and cutting into my chest. He began to speed up his slashes, cutting into any part of me he could. He grinned again, seriously, that was just fucking annoying at this point, and started to carve into my chest. This seemed more specific than his previous random slashes though.
“She was no fun you know. One stab? Boring. She must’ve been a little bitch to die that easily,” The pain in my head intensified, and slowly, I felt like I was losing consciousness. The pain doubled as soon as the thought entered my mind.
“No, no, kid. You’re going to feel every second of this,” He drew his blade down the middle of my chest in one slow elongated swipe, and blood squirted into his face. I coughed violently, both from his vice-like grip on my throat and the blood steadily pooling into my lung, and his face was quickly covered in the stuff. If I didn’t do something soon, I was going to die. Alphonse wiped the blood off of his face, and stared into my eyes.

“You know; she really was a little bitch. I heard her thoughts as she died, one of the perks of my powers, and she screamed for you to save her. Like I said, bitch,” He drew back his blade, going in for a stab, and my body moved on its own. I grabbed his wrist and shattered it in the same movement, forcing him to let go of my throat as he screamed. As it seemed he tended to do, he quickly turned his screaming into laughter.
“That was my stabbing arm!” He complained, throwing another knife at me with his functioning arm. It implanted itself in my thigh, and the sudden surge of adrenaline that had freed me started to fail. The floor was surprisingly reflective, and I watched as the pulsing light on my mangled suit slowed. I was going to be unconscious soon. He crawled away from me on his twisted and broken arms, and sprawled himself against the wall. He was breathing heavily.

“Wait,” I croaked, “There’s one more thing. Cynthia. Prove you aren’t a heartless bastard. Tell me what happened,” I said. He grinned, and promptly reached for another blade.
“She burned. Not my fault, but Alan is right. I probably could have saved her. I just didn’t want to,” He laughed like a maniac, and as he drew his knife, he screamed. He was using his mangled arm.
“Well, I guess I’ll go say hi to the little bitch. You’re boring me now,” He was struggling to hold his new knife in his hand. He found the right spot on his chest, and plunged it in, cackling all the way until he died.

No. Not this. Not again. This couldn’t be happening to me again. The room filled with a bright red light, and my body began to float into the air. The glow in my eyes had changed to red, and it was that light that was filling the room. The blood-flow in my body came to a halt, and I was gripped by a feeling of suffocation. But I wasn’t. My body was being filled by what felt like liquid fire, flowing into any open cavity it could find, and then breaching into every cell. I saw it as it flowed into my open wounds, and watched in horror and agony as it flew out of my body.

I screamed, pain and fear combining into a savage roar as the energy flowed out of me, and I blacked out as the orb of energy that had formed around me exploded.


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