“Will that be all?” asked the cow at the counter before waving a fan in her face from the heat wave hitting Mooshu.
“Yea, thank you,” Jeremy answered and picked up the bag of ice cold drink and snacks. After going through the portal he hid in a friend’s house in Mooshu for about a day before he got asked to pick up some snacks and drinks. He gave another thank you and walked out of the shop to be hit with a wave of more heat from the outside. To say it was scorching would be an understatement. You might be able to make popcorn on the ground. Everyone in the Jade Palace market was sitting at their porch with a glass of ice water in hand or waving fans. He bowed slightly to a few of the residents he knew and some waved to him back.
He knew that running away wasn’t the right thing to do, but he felt that he needed to get away, you know, for a while. He just couldn’t take it anymore. His friend just turned evil, the person he trusted the most has been lying to him his whole life, he just realized that he’s this big important Life Hatake, and to top it all he has a giant forest spirit inside of him that’s trying to take over! He ran his hand through his hair to check if the horns were still there.
“Yup,” he sighed. If he didn’t know any better he would say that he looked like a Satyr, without the goat legs of course.
When he was about to turn to Kishibe Village the vegetation around him started freezing and the air started getting cold. He shivered and he could see his breath. He looked back, but saw nothing and the air just got colder. He knew this was bad so he ran to the door to enter Kishibe Village but it was covered in a block of ice. He tried to break it, but no matter how hard he tried it wouldn’t even scratch.
“Having trouble, Jeremy?” He turned around and found Matt leaning against the tree with a smirk on his face. Jeremy quickly got out his wand and awkwardly pointed it at Matt.
“S-stay away from me,” he said while trying not to sound like he was afraid and not be shaking as much.
“Or what? You’re going to throw that stick you call a wand at me?” Matt chuckled. Jeremy gripped his wand tighter and glared at Matt.
“What do you want?” He questioned Matt.
“Well, not you, per se. We want the power that’s inside you,” Matt responded.
“You mean the forest spirit? You can have it!”
“No, we couldn’t care less about Lord Raidon. We want the power of the Life Hatake, and it’s not that simple,” Matt chuckled and gave a superior smirk.
“Look at the mighty Life Hatake. Cowering in fear.” Jeremy’s glare intensified and you could see his canines growing and sticking out of his mouth.
“We’ll see who’s cowering,” Jeremy growled with a strange deeper voice and his eyes glowed a bright green color. Matt stepped forward, but in a blink of an eye Jeremy was in front of him and swiped his hands that grew claws and Matt barely dodged it, receiving a scratch to his shirt. Matt looked at Jeremy to find that Jeremy had a blank look in his eyes. So that’s it.
“That beast is controlling you,” he yelled at Jeremy. Jeremy let out a grunt and lunged at Matt, but as a he was going to punch him, Matt exploded into snowflakes. Matt reappeared behind a tree not too far away, he’s fast, he thought. He took a breath and jumped away as Jeremy sliced through the tree.
“You’re going to have to do better than that.” Matt knew he had to get Jeremy away from the civilians that were likely to show up from all the commotion. Matt stopped in his tracks as shadow creatures started surrounding him. Jeremy landed a few feet away from Matt and he left a minor crater. More shadow creatures started surrounding them, No not now. Matt took a deep breath and punched the ground sending huge ice shards up from the ground encasing the creatures in it. When he turned around he saw Jeremy breathing hard on all fours and trembling.
“Why… why did you do… do that?” He said out of breath, obviously drained from using Lord Raidon’s powers. Matt didn’t answer he just watched as Jeremy collapsed on the ground completely exhausted. He went over to him and picked him up and put him over his shoulder.
“Don’t worry. We’ll find him,” Fallon assured Angel as they all say down in the council room.
“I hope so,” Angel said to her.
“We will,” Alric began, “I also found something very interesting that you all should know.” Alric pulled out a giant old book, it magically opened, and started flipping through pages with dust flying out until it stopped on a certain page. The others were watching intently as Alric was searching the page with his finger until he looked up and cleared his throat. “You see, I found this book in the section of our library that Angel was in charge of,” he stopped and looked at Angel along with the others. Angel slinked down in his chair a little and asked Alric to keep going. “Anyways, I figured out why RettSej has such a tight hold on the Death Hatake. According to this book, each Hatake has a special power that his unlocked when they master full control of their powers. In the case of the Death Hatake, it is the most dangerous one. It’s called “The Reaper’s Touch”. What it does is it takes the soul of another to fuel the caster and increase their power. In other words-”
“Certain death,” Kevin said.
“Correct,” Alric began again. “To think that someone could have so much power… Why did you keep this kind of information from us Angel?” Angel lifted his head up and extended his hand out and the book flew to his hand.
“It’s one of the secrets that Grandmother Raven trusted me with and I wrote it in this book so I would never forget the dangers of being me,” he sighed. “This book contains all of the information of the Hatakes. You may have noticed that what you just read was the only page with ink on it. Well, that was because I put a protection spell on this book, but I forgot to put it back on when I was reading it yesterday.”
“Don’t you trust us Angel?” Heather asked.
His head hurt again, more than before. He opened his eyes, his vision was blurry, but he could make out flames or torches on the wall. He moved his hands to rub his eyes but he couldn’t. He blinked again and looked down to see that he was tied to a chair. He struggled to get out trying to squeeze his hands out but they wouldn’t go. He heard footsteps coming and tried harder while the footsteps got louder until the footsteps stopped and Jeremy looked up to see Blaze Titanthorn smirking evilly at him with his arms crossed in front of his chest.
“Look at the mighty Life Hatake… Oh, how you’ve fallen,” Blaze taunted walking closer to Jeremy.
“Let me go!” Jeremy yelled. Blaze chuckled and started circling around Jeremy.
“I’m afraid I can’t do that.”
“Why? What do you want?”
“I think it’s pretty clear what I want. I want to pull out that ancient power right out of your body. I couldn’t last time because that blasted mut you have inside of you was blocking my magic, and that accursed Angel showed up.”
“Oh yes, the former Ice Hatake. The fool didn’t even know that his own grandson was working against him,” Blaze chuckled. “That doesn’t matter anymore. I have you now.” He pulled out one of Jeremy’s hairs and you could hear Jeremy scream out in pain. “Hmm, seems your head is a little sensitive because of your horns. Nice set of dog teeth by the way.” Blaze laughed evilly. Jeremy used his tongue to feel his teeth until he felt a something sharp which were his new set of teeth.
“Blaze, you said you weren’t going to torture him.” Matt walked in from the same way Blaze came from.
“I was just having a little fun before we extract the power out of him,” Blaze explained to Matt.
“Yeah, well, before that you need to keep up with your end of the deal,” Matt warned Blaze. Blaze’s face went stoic with a slight frown and walked towards Matt.
“I was thinking of doing that after we have his powers...”
“No. The deal was that when I captured Jeremy that you would revive my parents. A deal is a deal.”
“Hn. And if I don’t? What can you do to me?” Blaze questioned Matt. Matt remained stoic watching Blaze’s every move. “Exactly. Nothing.” Matt’s eyes started glowing light blue slightly until Blaze slammed him on the ground. “You better learn your place, or else.”
Matt opened his eyes to reveal white eyes with a hint of blue. “Or else what?” he growled at Blaze and pushed him off of him.
“Or else Jeremy dies, right here,” Blaze pulled up to reveal that his hand has transformed to that of a skeleton with a dark aura surrounding it. Blaze’s eyes went into a deathly glare towards Matt.
“The Reaper’s Touch… you wouldn’t,” Matt gasped.
“Try me.” They both stood idle for a while staring each other down until they heard a large crash coming from above. While Blaze was distracted, Matt casted a couple of huge ice shards which separated Jeremy from Blaze and cut the ropes that tied him to the chair. Jeremy jumped out and joined Matt’s side.
“You ok?” Matt asked while rocks were coming down from the ceiling.
“Yea, just really confused,” Jeremy answered him. They turned around to find shadow creatures helping Blaze up.
“You’ll wish you never did that, Matthew,” Blaze warned him.
“I’m not scared of you Blaze,” Matt countered him. Blaze chuckled and an intense dark aura surrounded Blaze.
“Well, you should be,” he lunged towards Matt, but Matt quickly used an ice wall blocking his path. “How resourceful, but let’s see if you can block this.” Blaze put his hands in front of him and started putting the energy around him into a sphere like form. Matt did the same and both of their sphere like magic started growing bigger and bigger and looked more like an enlarged beach ball. Matt took his in one hand and threw it at Blaze first and seconds later Blaze, using his two hands, did the same. Matt sensing that this wouldn’t end well, he used an ice wall to protect him and Jeremy. When the two masses of energy collided it created a huge explosion that broke the shield Matt has created and sent the trio flying out and away from the underground layer. Matt with his quick thinking created a pile of soft snow for them to land on. The landing still hurt, but not as much as it would if it wasn’t for the snow. Jeremy sat up and thanked Matt and looked around where they landed. It was a barren land filled with dead plants and bones everywhere. There were a couple of dead trees around and some leaves on the ground.
“What is this place?” Jeremy asked.
“This is where my grandpa and his friends defeated Morganthe. They left it in good shape, didn’t they? Matt joked.
“Funny time for a joke isn’t it,” they turned around to find Blaze walking out of the smoke unharmed. His eyes completely blacked out while his pupil was blood red. Matt quickly stood up and got in a fighting position.
“Jeremy, run,” Matt ordered him. Jeremy got up and stood next to Matt.
“No I’m fighting with you,” Jeremy said while he got into a fighting position.
“Fools… Then you’ll both end your journey here!” Blaze jumped up, grew wraith wings, and flew fast towards them. Matt didn’t know what to do until he pushed Jeremy aside and braced himself.
“Matt!” Angel yelled after him. He saw Matt turn his head slightly towards him and he could hear just a faint ‘I’m sorry’ before Blaze crashed into him and a bright light was released. Jeremy and Angel shielded their eyes from the light and when the light finally dimmed they saw Blaze standing over Matt. Angel quickly ran towards them and so did Jeremy, but Angel stopped when he saw the lifeless look in Matt’s eyes. When Jeremy got near enough he heard Blaze talking to himself.
“It’s ok, there’s another one,” Blaze said and looked directly at Angel before he dissipated in a black smoke. Jeremy ran until he crashed on his knees next to Matt’s body and was shaking him so Matt could wake up.
“Come on Matt. Wake up,” he cried. “Come on! You’re stronger than this! Wake up!” he cried louder. “Matt don’t do this! You can’t lose! Not to him! Wake up!” Tears started running down his face and he slammed his fist on Matt’s chest.
“Please…” he whispered. “You can’t…”
Angel looked on sadly, guilt reaching him because he was too late and he put his head down in shame while he heard Jeremy’s sobs. Angel picked up his head when he felt the wind pick up and he saw the all the leaves traveling towards Jeremy.
“Oh no,” Angel whispered, “Jeremy!” Angel tried to get closer but the wind got stronger pushing him away while the leaves started surrounding and circling around Jeremy and Jeremy was emitting a bright green light.
“Angel!” Cassandra Dragonheart yelled as the rest of the council was arriving at the scene. “What’s going on?!” She asked.
“It’s Lord Raidon. Jeremy’s anger and sadness made his defenses go down and now Lord Raidon is trying to take over.” Angel informed them.
More and more leaves started surrounding Jeremy until you can only see rays of bright green light shooting out of the sphere of leaves. Then there was blast coming from the leaves that pushed the rest of the wizards back. They heard and animalistic ground and a large furred foot stepped out of the sphere of leaves. Then the whole body of a fully grown Forest Lord stepped out with bright green glowing eyes.
“It’s too late,” Autumn Fire blade said sadly.
“No, I won’t give up that easily,” Angel said. Angel stepped closer but then the ground started shaking. The grand beast raised his hands and two huge trees erupted from the ground next to it. He then growled again while he absorbed some energy into its hands and gave a final loud roar until he got into an attack position.
“We need to hold him down!” Angel yelled. “Cass, can you entangle him?” Cass nodded and went forward and waved her hands in a style that he was taught and vines emerged from the ground and tangling themselves on the giant forest lord. The giant beast growled and tore him arm from the vines and started ripping them off of himself. “Katherine?”
“I’m on it,” she informed him and did the same thing that Cass did and more vines emerged from the ground and entangling him. This time with both of them they tied him down enough that he couldn’t rip them off but they still had trouble. Ronan and Alric went forward and stood on either side of the beast and conjured up the spiritual chains and wrapped them around the beast leaving him immobile.
“Autumn, can you do a fire circle around him?” Angel asked. Autumn concentrated and jumped up and blew fire out of her mouth in a circle which surrounded them and jumped back down with a slight smile. “Perfect.” Angel ran and jumped on a rock and, with the powers of being the Ice Hatake, he controlled the wind and flew up the head of the great beast. He looked it in the eyes, and sighed before he placed his palm in the middle of forehead and chanted a secret spell and in a blink of an eye the great beast turned back into Jeremy, without the horns or sharp teeth. Angel caught him before he landed on the ground and flew back where the ground went. However, Jeremy woke up quick and squired out of Angel’s arms before he looked at each of the council members and took out of his pockets the portable teleporter Alric used on him and he transported out of there.
“What do we do now?” Kevin asked.
“We wait. Jeremy isn’t in any danger after what just happened,” Angel informed them.
“How do you know?” Fallon asked.
“The Reaper’s Touch can only be used once every 72 hours. Jeremy just needs some time to think,” with that Angel turned around and headed back to the Twi-star Observatory.
Author's note: What do you guys think? I hope it was unexpected. Anyways, I've been working on a separate site for this story with character bios, setting, a glossary, and much more to make it easier for you to read it. I might release it after I'm done writing the last chapter which has more surprises I promise! Until next time!