Protector of the Weak: Part II

November 4, 2010
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Rurik opened his eyes, slowly revealing a bright room. He blinked a few times to see past his still blurry vision. Jack-hammers pounded into his skull as he strained to take in his surroundings. He noticed he was back at the camp, lying on his own springy bed. Memories of the previous night flashed in his mind. What the h*** happened? He thought. His entire body felt as if he had been hit by a truck. Every part of him throbbed in unpleasant pain far worse than the after effects of a day inside of the Iron Maiden. Rurik noticed Indra sitting at the foot of his bed, and he struggled to sit up; refusing to be weak in the god’s presence. A pair of firm hands gently forced him back down. Pain ripped through him at first contact. He clenched his teeth together as he was forced to submit to the unwelcomed pressure of the god’s touch.
“You must rest now, Rurik.” Indra’s voice held a parental softness Rurik didn't understand. “You have been so strong.”
Rurik tried to ask why the god was acting in such kindness, but when he opened his mouth to speak, the only sound to come from his cracked lips was a strained croak. He cleared his throat and tried again. He was only able to softly whisper “Water,” before his throat gave up and denied him any more access to his words. Indra immediately got off the bed and left the room. The movement jostled the springy mattress and sent another wave of pain rippling throughout Rurik’s body. A moment later, Indra returned with a tall glass of iced-water. Rurik struggled to sit up again as another wave of pain took hold of his body. The pain was manageable this time, however, but sitting up still took tremendous effort. He took the ice-water from Indra’s extended arm took a cautious sip. As soon as the cool liquid touched his brittle lips, he easily downed the remaining contents of the glass. It was empty within seconds. He cleared his throat and tried again to speak. His voice was still strained, but he managed more than a single whisper.
“What the h*** is going on?” Rurik didn’t bother holding back his anger. He was confused and vulnerable and despised the feelings. He wasn’t one to be helpless, and sure as h*** didn’t want Shri Indra to take advantage of his current condition.
“Allow me to explain.” Indra spoke with patience laced around every word. “A thousand years ago, I met with a young prophet. He spoke of a boy who held extreme power. I was to obtain this boy, and train him to be a fierce warrior. On the boy’s twenty-fifth birthday, the power from above was to unite with his own power within. That is what happened to you three days ago in-“
“Hold up. You mean to tell me that I’ve been out cold for three days?”
“Precisely, the transfusion of the powers took tremendous effort and drained you of your strength completely. To be honest, I was not expecting you to awake for another week. You must be far stronger than I had first imagined possible.”
“Just tell me what the h*** all of this means, before I lose my mind.” Rurik spoke through clenched teeth. He tacked on “If you would, Master Indra,” so the god wouldn’t be angered by his forwardness. Rurik was desperate for answers. What had happened in the clearing wasn’t like anything he had ever experience.
“You are the Chosen One, Rurik. It is your destiny to save the human race.”
Rurik snorted, “You’re funny. Like the entire world’s safety depends on me. Good one.”
“I do not a joke, Rurik. You must listen to the words I speak. Asura is back. He has come to destroy the Chosen One – you - and the world as well.” Indra sounded almost afraid of Asura, the demon dragon whom he’d put to rest millennia ago. Rurik had never seen the dragon, for he was taken out far before his own time. But the legends that surround the creature are sickening. Asura had killed thousands of innocents without mercy. He’d ripped out their hearts, and set scorching blue flames upon their flesh using his fiery breath. He’d snack upon the weak, and laugh in the faces of the brave. “You must defeat him, Rurik, before it is too late.”
“Well how the h*** am I supposed to defeat Asura, if you couldn’t do it all those years ago?”
“The difference between you and I is that I do not have The Power. You are gifted with the power from above as well as from within. The Power lies within you, Rurik. It is your destiny to defeat the evil Asura, not mine.”
Rurik let out a defeated sigh. The god made an excellent point. Much as he despised the thought of Indra being right, he couldn’t deny the power he felt swirling inside of him. It was a low hum of vibration he’d noticed since he’d woken up. He could almost see his skin glowing with radiance so much like the lightning that had flashed blindingly in the clearing. “Just tell me what I must do, Master Indra.”

For the next three weeks, Indra prepared Rurik for the inevitable battle with Asura. Indra taught Rurik how to control his newly founded power, and how to call upon it during battle. He learned to create monstrous storms in peaceful skies and how to use the storm’s elements for attack. He learned to form tornados and hurricanes, and use their fierce winds to blind and lash at his target. He could call upon any number of bolted lightings, and flash them wherever he desired. He learned to gather the rolling vibrations from the thunder sounding in the sky, and use it to create a dark, crackling ball of energy that’s two feet wide, in-between his palms. The Shock Wave, as he liked to call the energy blast, stunned its victims and left them incapacitated for days; Indra thought it best to test each technique on the inmates in the village’s prison to know their strengths and weaknesses. It was the only way for Rurik to understand his power more intimately. The Vajra however, is Rurik’s favorite weapon. It’s a bolted lightning sword that can also be shot like an arrow. It electrocutes its victims on contact, until their eyes explode within their heads. No person has yet to survive it. He hopes though, that it will be enough to destroy Asura.
He knew he should feel some ounce of fear towards the battle to come, but he didn’t. He was surprisingly excited. His brutal life had trained him for this particular fight. His muscles ached for the battle. He could feel the power within him hum with anticipation. He had no doubt the dragon would perish by his hands. At the revelation, an unwanted thought crawled into his mind, What if I don’t make it out alive, either? I could very well perish along with the dragon. The voice of his thoughts sounded nothing like his own. But it didn’t matter, anyway. He wasn’t the least bit afraid of dyeing, especially if Asura died with him. If he had to leave this world to end the demon once and for all, then so be it. He’d much rather die in battle, with honor.
A loud crash brought Rurik out of his darkened thoughts. A young woman came running through the large metal doors that led into the weight room he was working in. She looked white as a ghost as she ran to a stop two feet in front of Rurik.
“Come quick!” The woman’s voice was frantic. Tears threatened to leave the seclusion of her eyes as she tried to catch her breath.
Rurik grabbed the woman’s shoulders, willing her to calm down. When she finally settled, he spoke with a calm urgency so as not to scare her again. “What happened?”
“It’s Asura! He’s attacked the village! Oh God, there’s blood everywhere! Please! You must stop him before it’s too late!”
Rurik froze in place, his breathe coming out in shallow puffs. He’d known this day would come. He’d dreamt of it for weeks, relishing the feel battle that rattled deep within his bones. He hadn’t expected it to come so soon, however. He needed to find Indra. Despite all the years of torture with the god, Rurik couldn’t help but to hate him a little less. He would never admit to needing him though. He doesn’t need anyone. But Indra had been significantly different with Rurik since that horrid night in the clearing; saying praises of encouragement instead of threats of painful consequences. Tending to his wounds when would be struck by his own lightning. In a way he will never comprehend, Rurik has come to understand the god’s cruelty for those many agenizing years; you didn’t make a warrior out of hugs and kisses.
“Stay here, and don’t move until I get back. There are wards protecting the camp so you will be safe here. Nothing other than human can get it without sanction.” Without checking to see if he’d been heard, Rurik left the woman in the weight room, bursting through the metal doors in search for the god.
Once outside, he immediately froze at the sight before him. The afternoon sky was no longer the pale blue it had been earlier. Enormous pillars of swirling smoke painted the sky black. An orange glow rested just above the twenty foot tall fence surrounding the camp. Forgetting about Indra and desperate to find the source of the destruction, Rurik ran to the iron gates leading to the outside.
Once through the dense forest surrounding the village, Rurik saw the chaos of Asura’s vengeance. Houses were a blaze and body parts were scattered on the ground in gory heaps of flesh. Blood blanketed the earth in flowing rivers of crimson. The stench of burning skin caused Rurik to cough and cover his nose and mouth with his arm. The piercing screams of Asura’s victims sounded not too far in the distance. Rurik took off at a dead run towards the sound, knowing time was dwindling to a gruesome end. The farther he ran, the louder the screams became.
Abruptly Rurik stopped his fast pace, as a large shadow circling over head passed over him. He risked a glance towards the sky and felt his breath leave his lungs in a wave of rage. Asura was soaring above; dark wings spread wide and monstrous talons enclosed around a limp body. Asura was oblivious to Rurik’s presence below, and ripped the body in half; spraying the warrior with its blood. Rurik dashed behind a boulder, hoping he was unnoticed by the beast in the sky. He took this moment to marvel in the dragon’s beauty. Asura was colossal; taller than an oak tree, with a wing span of five horses lined up head to butt. His glossy scales were a shiny black, reflecting purple when the sun hit them. Short bone-like spikes ran down his back, while four horns were nestled atop his massive head. Rurik flinched as Asura opened his powerful horse like snout, revealing hundreds of gleaming razor sharp teeth, and bit down on the upper half of the lifeless body he had mangled. Rurik was unnerved by the dragon’s eyes; an incandescent red that looked as if they held the souls of millions.
Rurik moved to find a more useful hiding place other than the boulder. He took a step back and his foot landed on a twig. With a loud snap, the broken stick brought Rurik to Asura’s attention. The warrior froze in place as the dragon flew from the sky, and landed not ten feet in front of him.
Well, well, well. Look what we have here. The deep voice sounded in Rurik’s head. He was confused for only a moment, before he remembered what Indra had told him. The dragon doesn’t speak, but projects his voice into the mind’s of whomever he wishes. Asura breathed in deeply through his snout. You are the chosen one, are you not? I can smell the Power within you. Tell me, did Shri Indra send you? I was certain he was dead when I had left him in the village.
“What happened to Indra?” Rurik was surprised at his concern for the god. He should not feel remorse at the thought of Indra’s death.
Rurik heard Asura’s unconcerned chuckled in his mind. Silly mortal. You should be more worried about your own life, not the likes of that lowly god. Asura attacked then, breathing out sparking blues flames of fire. Rurik was quick, summoning a tornado to diminish the scorching blaze. The wind and the flame danced in battle until the inferno crumbled under the airstream’s force.
Hmmm, I see you have been trained well, young Rurik. But it will not be enough! Asura flew straight up into the sky, preparing another blast of blue flame. Rurik created thunders in the firmambgnt, and drew upon its vibrations to create the Shock Wave. He sent the energy ball soaring towards the dragon. Asura tried to dodge the attack, but was hit in his right foot. Rurik created another Shock Wave and sent it airborne. Asura retaliated by forcing the crackling ball back at Rurik with another blast of his blue flame. Rurik jumped out of the way of the flaming orb, landing in a crouch. Rurik had to get the dragon back to the ground if he was going to win. He summoned another Shock Wave, and aimed just above the dragon’s left wing before sending it soaring through the air. As he expected, Asura flew higher into the air – directly into the path of Rurik’s Shock Wave - to dodge the attack. The orb ripped through Asura’s wing and sent him hurtling towards the earth. Rurik didn’t waist a heartbeat. He called upon bolts of lightning to create an electrical cage surrounding the dragon.
“You’re finished, Asura” Rurik was giddy as he taunted the dragon; not bothering to stifle the wide grin plastered on his face. “And to think I was worried about this fight.” Rurik summoned the Vajra, and pointed it at Asura’s heart.
I’ll see you in h***. Asura knew he was defeated and, in a strange and perplexing way, was honored to have been defeated by such immense power; The Power.
“No, you won’t” Rurik shot the Vajra into Asura’s chest, finally putting an end to his evil. The dragon wailed in agony as the bolted sword electrocuted his inner organs. At last, Asura’s eyes exploded and he fell limply onto the earth. Rurik called off the lightning cage, and walked over to Asura’s lifeless body. “Good riddance,” he said without emotion. He then ran back to the village in search of Indra, to tell him the good news. When he reached the still blazing houses of the township, he searched frantically for the god; calling out his name every few seconds. He heard the faint call of his own name, and headed towards the sound. He followed it into the woods, and into the clearing where he had first gotten the Power. A lump of red lay still in the center of the grass. “Indra,” Rurik breathed, and ran toward the unmoving god. He rolled Indra onto his back to get a clear view of the god’s face, covered in his own blood.
“You are alive,” Indra said on a struggled breath.
“Of course I am. I was very well prepared.” Indra smiled at Rurik’s attempt to lighten the mood.
“You did well, Rurik. I am proud of you.” Indra fought to keep remorse from filling his words as pain filled his eyes. A single tear rolled down his cheek, and into his ruffled beard. Rurik lifted his finger to catch the liquid agony.
“I should hate you, you know. My life was torture because of you.” Rurik felt his voice crack, and was momentarily angered by his own weakness.
“As was mine, Rurik. I love you as if you are my very own son, and hated every moment I had brought you pain and suffering. But I had to make you strong, so you could defeat Asura.”
After a moment’s silence, Rurik spoke. “What now, Master Indra?” His heart ached to see Indra so vulnerable.
“It is my time, son; time for me to leave this world, and journey on to the next.” They again sat in silence; Rurik protectively holding Indra in his arms until at last the god’s heartbeat began to slow, each beat ticking the seconds of his remaining life. Soon his heart stopped all together, releasing Indra of his body. Rurik lifted Indra into his arms, and brought him back to the camp. Not knowing what else to do, he brought Indra to his own bed, and laid him there. Rurik sat beside the god for what seemed like perpetuity, before moving to prepare a death ceremony for him.
With Indra gone, and Asura defeated, Rurik didn’t know what he was supposed to do. He continued his training, growing stronger with each passing day. He stayed in the camp beside the village; knowing that any threat to come to the people, he would take care of. His only purpose now was to protect the weak.

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Minnie94 said...
Nov. 12, 2010 at 12:22 pm
I love it, very original, descriptive, and unique:)
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