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Remnants of the Storm

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#1Kazimir Seiryu 

Remnants of the Storm Empty Sun Sep 06, 2020 8:14 am

Kazimir Seiryu
Kaz stood up with blood still on his robe, stained in streaks. His chest bobbed up and down with each deep breath. The dust and stones from the edge of the building skidded off the side as he braced himself to stand up on the roof of the fourth floor. The night sky loomed overhead with dark clouds. He stood straight with a single deep breath. His torn headband was snagged by a jagged pipe and flapped in the wind. His history was standing before him.

A man stood across from him dressed in robes. A white headband tied around his forehead, holding back salt and pepper hair. Wind circled his feet just as they did Kaz. The translucent image of the white tiger gleamed in the dark clouds above, hidden behind squalls.

The small peak of the church of illumin watched over the battle, barely rising its peak above the nearby buildings. A sanctuary for believers and the source of Kazimir's blessing and a curse. On the other side was the humble and small one-floor building of the remains of the rune knights. The once monumental institutions in his life, only a background now.

The mage glared at the man across from him. "So you came at last, master." Kaz spoke with a flat tone, suppressing the deep-rooted mix of feelings within him. He had no need for questions. He knew all the answers he needed to know.

"It was time to finally end this battle. What has it been now...years. I've hunted you and you've killed your brethren one after another."

"Not my brethren. Not after what they did. My brethren were massacred long ago," he spat back. The memory of the screams from the clan of water mages uprooted from the bowels of his memories.

The older man shrugged and circled around the edge of the building, "All this time and you have still live by that name." he stopped prowling the roof.

"I owe them that much. Just like I owe you for them. To do what I wasn't able to years ago," Kaz said crouching down into a fighting stance.

"You have no right to wield our ancient blessing. You've killed the other clansmen. And I promise. I will be the last clansman alive." The man dashed forward and Kaz rushed in at the same time. Wind streaking behind both of them.

Kaz's eyes flashed white with wrath as angelic fury filled him. The anger pumped through his veins, with one single objective. The mage's clashed. Torrents of wind shot out and sliced into buildings and blasted chunks lose from others.

Funnel clouds swirled as the two danced around in rapid circles. Columns of wind roared to life and blades of wind ripped through the air, shearing through the sound of violence.

Each stood their ground with blades of wind colliding with one another. Never staying in one spot for more than the fraction of a second. The old man's movements were precise. Kaz's were erratic and fueled by nothing but rage. He could see them all in his mind bleeding and dying.  

The old man sidestepped a blade of wind and flipped away from a tornado forming at his feet. With a flick of his hand, as a barrage of countless blades of wind appeared above Kaz. The ex rune knight dashed forward to close the distance when the storm of blades crashed down on him.  His fierce silence broke with the howl of agony as blood splattered the air intertwined with torn ribbons of cloth and armor.

The roof collapsed and the wind mage tumbled into the pits of the empty amphitheater. His eyes blinked only opening enough to reveal the passing images of the church and rune knight headquarters.

With a thud, he hit the ground and rolled onto his stomach, groaning. His weak hand clawed at the debris around him.

"Pathetic. All that power and you fail to wield it," The clan leader stalked toward the former guild master of phoenix feather and gazed down on him from the atop the hole where the roof once was. Storm clouds still churned overhead. Kazimir looked up at his nemesis and onward into the sky at the heavens that gave him this curse. Changed who he was and how he lived. All of it rolled into something closer to a destiny he couldn't control. He had brought people back from the dead. Surpassed the barriers of the afterlife, and yet he was still tethered to a path he only partly steered through.

Tornadoes formed as the elder rose his hands to the sky. Kazimir pushed against the large pieces of debris. His muscles strained against the cold concrete slabs. The storm crashed down. The raging winds he had bathed criminals in his whole life, now engulfed him. Tore at his body and broke his body free from the debris and tossed him about just as easily.

"That's how its done, disciple," the elder spoke and straightened his cloak. "Our struggle is finally over. You may join those you cared about. It is a shame, Kazimir," a hint of regret in the man's voice at seeing his adopted son battered.

Kazimir laid mingled with the debris. A deep gasp brought a rush of air back to his lungs. He crawled out onto the floor and collapsed. On the other side of the room was the shredded scarf he had carried ever since he stepped foot in Fiore. "Why...Byakko," he whispered, feeling betrayed by the guardian beast.

A tear streaked down his face. His emotions twisted in all directions. Called to rejoice in more wrath as the angelic scar burned on his chest. "No" He pressed his hand on the ground to try and push himself up. His armor was torn away and robes were almost ripped to shreds. He drug his exposed torso across the ground. He could barely hear the call of the wild anymore. The rush of wind across his face. Dashing across the land with the rustle of leaves. It felt cold and distant to him now. A far off begotten life.

"It's you. It's always been you,"He clenched his fist against the ground. "You will not change me. My wrath will be my own." He glared at the tiny church next to him and held his hand over his chest. "I don't need your damned power!" The faint roar of the tiger spirit permeated the air around him. The stones rumbled beside him. The dark clouds above split at the smallest point to reveal a brief shimmer of heavenly light.

A golden glow radiated from his chest. His eyes turned white with angelic fury. His hand tensed and gripped the scar across his body left by the angel's blade. Mana poured out from his fingers into the wound. Streams of golden grace flowed outward around through his fingers and around his hand.

"You need me. You have work to do. The heavens are not done with you yet!" A voice yelled in his mind.

"I'm done with the heavens!" The golden hue erupted around him and filled the room. A dome of golden energy shoved all the debris to the far corners and burst the walls and more bits of the roof away. The elder staggered on the edge of the roof and whirled back around.

Kaz fell to his knees. White wings sprouted from his back and bursting into light. Single white feathers drifted to the ground. He felt the rush of his blood within his veins. The tingle in his ears. And the ache of memories touching his heart. More tears ran down his cheeks, he could finally feel again. He had not even realized how far he drifted from humanity.

The roar of the tiger filled his soul once more, and the wind returned to him. But he still struggled to get to his feet. The scar on his chest sizzled with golden fire, slowly fading away.

And then there it was. A voice calling to him. Her voice...and the others. The clan of water echoing around him. Those whose name he had taken. A figure stood before him. Oriana, with her hand, extended. "The guardian has waited for you to come back," she said in a voice that he had nearly forgotten. With a hesitant motion, he touched her hand and then fully held it. She pulled him up and vanished as quickly as she had appeared. Around him, a blue magic seal appeared. Her seal. Water splashed around the edges and swirled like a whirlpool. The image of the guardian dragon wrapped its translucent body around the mage and hung in the air to his right. The white tiger stepped out of the air and stood to his left.

Around one hand water rushed and around his other was wind. He held them up and wiggled his fingers within it. It was new yet felt so natural. The wind and water rushed down his arms and met around his torse, raging together into a hurricane of magical energy.

The elder stared wide-eyed at the remnants of history and his choices bundled into one moment. His hands shook seeing the two guardians beside one. They clenched into a tight fist as shock turned to rage. "KAZIMIR!" The wind raged to life and he rose his hand to the sky once more.

Kaz closed his eyes and felt the balance of new power within him. Feeling...whole. He exhaled from his nose. His own anger pooling to the top and emotions churning within him. "Let's go," he opened his mortal eyes now and roared into the heavens above.

A dozen hurricanes formed in the sky and crashed down, eclipsing the Elder's magic. The building was turned to rubble. The twisters struck at all points around them. The elder was tossed into the air by one and then the other. The water and wind creating a symphony of torrential pain.

Kaz dashed into the air beside the elder in an instant and flew by his own power without the crutch of angelic wings. He threw his hands upward and two blades of wind ripped upward and struck the elder. The first blade buried deep into his back, the same place Kaz was wounded. The elder spun in the air and Kaz sent the other blade into his chest. The wind tore his armor open and blood mingled with wind and water. The wounds on the elder's body now mirrored the ones on Kazimir's

The elder crashed down with another hurricane funnel of wind into the abandoned and broken buildings below. His body lay motionless. Kaz landed at his former master's feet. Water and wind still dancing around him.

"So that's it huh...That's what they wanted," the elder smiled in defeat at his decisions. "Good for you," he coughed up blood on his chest.

Kaz let the elements die down around him, and sat next to his former master. "It's finally over," he said as the dark sky created by their magic slowly dissipated.

"I guess...it's you who will carry on the blessings of both clans now. I should have known. Ever since you were brought to us."

He put a hand on the man's shoulder. The revenge that had fueled him seemed to dull as he watched the man die next to him. "Rest now, master. It's all over."

"And what about you," he stammered once more with the last few breaths he had.

"Me too,"
he replied solemnly and thought about his missing parents.

"Do it quickly. It's not our way."

Kaz closed his eyes, knowing the man was right. He would do the same for him. No matter what hate he felt, the man still taught him almost all he knew. Kaz placed a hand on his master's neck. The old man closed his eyes as did Kaz. And with a final gust of wind all was silent. Kaz swallowed, choked up. He wiped the tear from his face and stood with a calming breath. Wiping his nose he looked at the battleground. He was the last.

He stepped out from the chaos and hobbled down the path. His body riddled with injuries. He slid the rune knight medallion from his neck and hung it on a piece of rhubarb hanging loose.

One Week Later

Kazimir's hotel room was empty as it typically was. Nothing on the walls and nothing in the closets. The bed was already made but there was a small package on top of it. A folded up bundle of uniforms were tied together by a thin rope. Three sets in all. A small note was attached to the top of it.

'Please deliver to the nearest Rune Knight station. I've decided to find my home.'

Kazimir walked out into the streets with his backpack over his shoulder. Looking back at the city it was all his memories of Fiore. The love that he shared with people and the Knights he had met along the way. Even all the way back to the first people he had met that had guided him here, an Angel and a Vampire. "What a strange land," he said with a voice caught by the whispering wind.

He took a bite of the half-eaten pancake and stepped outside the city limits. His griffon flew up above his head. His destination...Home.

As he was walking he heard the faint sound of a wagon wheel careening off the road and a loud thud. A small voice cried out in frustration. Kaz smiled as the wheel rolled up to his foot and fell flat. he rolled up his sleeves and picked up the wheel, "Can I help you?" he asked and finished the pancake in a large bite.

Remnants of the Storm Images?q=tbn%3AANd9GcS08ce_VjrqO5BVFRqeKRBRWIJ27W76R4E0Vg&usqp=CAU

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