Darkstalkers: End-Game

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Original poster

The year is 2065, and the planet is nearing what may be the final conflict it starts. In the later moments of the year 2012, a portal was ripped open by the would-be ruler of Makai, Jedah. This allowed a slew of otherworldly beings to enter the world of humans. Their mission was to enslave the human race in order for Jedah to establish his rule elsewhere before attempting his takeover of Makai. Jedah hoped to seize power from the Class S succubus, Morrigan Aensland. At the last moment, Morrigna managed to slip through to Earth, as she did frequently. The demons were on a simple mission: Destroy and enslave. The first meeting between the humans and their destroyers obviously didn't end well. The majority of the attacks occured under the cover of night, earning them the nickname of "Darkstalkers".

However, some Darkstalkers in the group were disgusted at the acts of destruction being committed, and broke away from their comrades. They attempted to settle down and blending into the societies, but as time passed by, it became apparent that they would have to fight back against the other malevolent Darkstalkers. And so it would come to pass. The benevolent beings came out of hiding and, after much fighting, managed to repel their former teammates back into Makai, though a few escaped before this happened. All the while, the humans had captured a few of the weaker, peaceful Darkstalkers, and began to experiment on them, creating advanced weaponry capable of killing any kind of Darkstalker. The humans, fully knowing the difference between the two groups of beings, began using their newfound power to capture and eliminate these demons from another realm with relative ease, using the living to advance their weaponry even further. The remaining Darkstalkers once again attempted to blend in, to escape the newly formed D.N.S.(Darkstalker Neutralization Squads). Some even confronted them head on, preferring to try talking instead of running and fighting, but this didn't do a thing.

Time passed, and the few who were left had hid their differences, and succeeded in marrying, getting josbs. A few had children of their own. But this was just the calm before the storm. The DNS now knew exactly where the Darkstalkers were, and began raiding the villages, destroying anything in their ways, and blamed it on the very victims of the attacks. At the same time, the disgraced troops that had retreated into Makai so many years ago re-emerge in the human world, and once again began to wreak havoc. Though they had gained considerable power, most of them were no match against the weapons the D.N.S. had begun to mass-produce. And so, even more Darkstalkers were captured, while the rest went into hiding, just like the benevolent ones had done. However, a few bolder ones had started conducting guerilla warfare, destroying several settlements despite the impending danger. And so, it still continues. The majority of Earth's population has been fooled into thinking that the captives were having their abnormalities removed. Lies, all lies. The future is one of lies and oppression;is it possible to change it now?
I hate them. The humans, I hate them all... At least, I wish I could say that. I can't remember very much, but I know I was raised by humans. They were really nice, and treated me like I was their own child... They loved me, and I loved all of them. But around the time I turned 15, I found out the truth; I'm a monster. I don't know why, but my body started changing into what it is now. Paws, claws, a tail, and fur... I tried to hide it, but a few days later, everyone just quit liking me. All the people I grew up with ran away from me, and the adults tried shooting me. I thought it was all just a joke or something, but I was wrong. I visited the orphanage like I used to, but the owner held a gun at me. I escaped, but I got shot in the shoulder as I did. The scar's gone, but I can still feel it.

Those weird soldiers starting chasing me, like I was an animal... I was being hunted, and I still am. I'll admit I have bad posture...I have claws, paws, fur, big ears, and a tail, but... does that justify them trying to kill me? I refuse to be grouped in with all those other things attacking cities, and murdering people in cold blood. A few months ago, I felt some sort of...energy. I can't really explain it, but I think it's my mom. It felt so familiar, it has to be! I keep hearing stuff about a big tournament, and the grand prize is a tour of the main D.N.S. building. If that's where my mom is, then... I have to get into that tournament and win it! But I won't kill anybody on the way... I refuse to hurt any innocent humans! I love humans, I really do, but... Why don't they love me back anymore?

Another sunny day in the city... Rose didn't have time to look at the weather, though. She was trying to escape the patrols, just like she did day after day. It had become something of an activity, actually...That didn't mean she enjoyed it, however. Rose kept running west, stumbling a few times as she did. These patrol guys were starting to carry better weapon; no good news for Rose... But then, she saw something that made her halt immediately. She was stuck in an alleyway. She looked around, eyes darting from side to side, looking for a way out, and then she found one: the walls. Rose flexed her claws, and leapt at one of the walls, stabbing her claws into it to keep herself from falling. She alternated hands to gain height, until she had jsut about reached the top. The D.N.S. must've seen her, because a bullet richocheted off the wall, very close to Rose. This sound was about four times as loud to her, and she let go of the wall to cover her ears, a reflex that had become much too common lately. Then she realized her fatal mistake: She let go of the wall... Thinking quickly, Rose once again stabbed her other claw into the wall, a loud screech audible. She looked under her, and saw about ten troops cock their guns. Crap! Rose turned to the left as she tried to outrun the troops, her heart racing. An alley?...Why me? Ughh... But then she saw her means of escape, two walls, very close together. Rose focused her eyes on the left wall, and pounced at it, claws out. She dug her claw into the wall, securing her place. She then turned to face the wall on the right, and kicked of the wall, stabbing into the right wall. The troops were right on her tail, so to speak, and they had begun to fire their guns. Rose quickly covered her ear with her paw, realizing that she was falling. This was a natural reaction for her, as her ears were much too sensitive. She regained her bearing, and continued scaling the walls, managin to crawl up on the rooftop.

"...Too close..." Rose muttered to herself.

She jumped down the building, landing on all fours, and then her body began changing drastically. The patches of fur stretched and thickened, covering her entire body. Her body shrunk and thinned, and the tail straightened out. Her paws shrunk, and evemed out. A small cat nose replaced her human one. She had turned into a small white kitten, the only remarkable thing being the small lock of golden hair that still hung between her eyes. Okay... I've got to get further away, somewhere I can rest for a little while... And with that thought, Rose began her running again, heading through the alleys.


Aquaeous could hear voices outside her window. She wanted to yank open the windows and dunk some ice on the losers that were interrupting her sleep. She rolled over, ducking under a bright blue pillow with a soft, strangled moan of annoyance. As the piercing sound of claws against cement broke through the remains of her fatigue, Aqua jumped out of bed in a shocked stupor, her hands pressed against her ears.

Throwing aside her covers, the blue haired teenager bounced over to the window and stuck her head out, blinking twice as she just missed the action. Was that a... cat woman jumping over the wall..? She wondered. Shaking her head of the instant curiousity, Aquaeous grinned when she saw the DNS agents look her way.

"Well, it's time for some payback. I dont especially adore rude awakenings, you know." she cracked her knuckles, pulling herself out of the window with the agility of a feline as a streak of water propelled her to the ground in a spray of waterworks.

"You better hope you have your mommies on speed dial."


Ferocious Strife

Ferocious watched as the cat girl got away. He sighed, looking over at the troops. A pretty young darkstalker girl seemed to have caught their attention. She threatened payback, but Ferocious wasn't sure she looked like she was capable of much. He signalled to the commander to let him take the first action. Dashing ahead, he jumped & propelled himself into the air, slamming a punch towards her stomach.

The attack allowed himself to get close enough. Ferocious had planned on glaring her into submission, but when he got a close view of her eyes, his memory flashed. Her resemblance to the little sister he once had was unbelievable. Fero was certain his entire family had died. Still, this girl... Shaking his head, Fero refused to be a victim of his emotions. He did not pull back his attack.

Aquaeous blocked the punch skillfully by creating a sheet of ice between her waist and his fist. Then she flipped backwards, landing on a gushing fountain of water. Her eyes narrowed, something about this boy was eerily familiar, but she couldn't decide on what it was.

Fero was surprised by her skill. "Get out of here, kid" he whispered hoarsely just for the two of them to hear before landing on the ground. She seemed strong enough to hold off her own while he had other things to do. He looked back, "I'm going after the other one," He told the commander, dashing off behind the troops and over the wall.

Once he was out of sight, Fero stopped to catch his breath. A flood of memories were rushing through him. At the same time, he could also feel a burst of familiar energy surging in his palms. He held them up, closed his eyes and felt the heat of his Darkstalker powers.

His powers had returned.

Ferocious shook his head of the upcoming relief filled thoughts and looked around for traces of the catgirl. He spotted a small white kitten running and followed.

"And the DNS up one point. Now over to our meteorologist Ken Baker."
"Thank you Henry, today is looking a little dark as cloudy weather looms over us. This eventually will lead into some early showers tomorrow morning. After that it should start clearing and temperatures should drop to around forty degrees." The slender man on the television said pointing at the cg images on the screen. Sitting in the dark room Ains smiled revealing his fangs.
"Today is looking fine." He mumbled getting out of his chair and opening the drapes. The light only blinded him for a bit as the world looked cast in a light hazy shadow. "At least I can walk around today." Putting on his polished shoes Ains thudded out of the room and down the steps. He exited out of the front door of a pretty badly beaten up hotel. If anyone came to the city this would be the last place they would check into.

The sun was not even over the tallest building at the edge of the city before commotion erupted; but, the DNS did like to make a big scene out of every 'criminal' they hunted down. Slightly interested in what they were after, and because he did not get a look at their target, Ains backed up into the alley next to the one they went into and flew upward to the roof tops. Landing just on the edge and continued along the edge in a casual fast pace stride. Looking down below he saw the girl land. She then proceeded to turn into a small white cat. "Interesting." Ains said watching the cat scurry off with a DNS soldier right after it. Looking back over to his left he saw a young girl facing off several DNS soldiers. It was not in his nature to intervene in affairs of others but this girl looked to be on a disadvantage. "And if anything I cannot stand unfair fights." Breathing a sigh at his next stupid act he descended down into the alley way. Landing next to the girl he spread his wings as his figure rose from a crouched position. "Do you mind if I join?" He asked politely keeping his eyes on the enemy.


"Do you mind if I join?"

"Not too much, no," Aquaeous replied curtly, "I'm sure I can leave some fun for you too," she winked as her fountain of water lowered to the ground, allowing her to dash ahead towards the soldiers. In her palm, a ball of water spun rapidly shooting out sprays of water that froze into sharp icicles aimed at the vital points of the soldiers.

After her little bullets were thrown into action, Aquaeous flipped backwards and balled her fists. She glared at the soldiers. How she hated them so. Brief flashes of her memory reminded her of her family and how it had once been before DNS had captured them. She had been young, but she did not forget. Her memory was a little blurry, however, still recovering from the full powered blast that had aided her escape.

No way was she going to get captured again. [/BG][/DASH]
Having gotten away from the troops, Rose slowed herself down to catach her breath. A moment's rest would do her body good. As she had jumped off the building, she noticed another group of soldiers heading elsewhere, and a rather feisty looking girl. Was it possible they were hunting her, too? She was outnumbered; there was no way she would survive, not by herself. The fur receded as Rose assumed her human form, making sure to she was well-hidden. The DNS was ruthless in its operations, and would stop at nothing to achieve its goals, whatever those were. They didn't care about family; they would gladly seperate a parent and child. It was widely believed they were helping humankind; helping everyone. They were supposed to be the saviors for the world; It was a pack of lies- They weren't helping the world; They were tearing it apart... It was just racism, hidden to look like some kind of a counter-violent organization... Rose's train of thought was interrupted as she felt the air get a bit heavier. She wasn't alone anymore; someone had followed her. She subtly turned her head, listening for any noise that would give her pursuer away. Losing patience, she yelled into the air.
"So, you pick on little children now?! You would kill a young girl like that?! What's wrong with you all?!"

Ferocious Strife

"You're lucky I'm in a good mood." Fero replied curtly, as he watched the little cat morph into a girl. He crossed his arms, eyes narrowed. Her name was Rose, he had read the files on her and her sibling. They were after her now because she had displayed a burst of power. "It would do YOU good if you stayed out of trouble, you know," Ferocious stepped closer, holding out his hand, a burst of flame dancing in his palm. He grinned, it felt good to have those powers back, "As if your existence was extinguished," the flame went out and he crossed his arms again, glaring at her.

"That little squirt jumped out of a window and challenged them herself. Can't say the same for you, because you're always on the run. Can't you be a little more low profile," Ferocious asked, "Rose?" His hand flipped to the handgun at his hip holster, obviously the Euphoria Shot. Fero knew this girl was a rather stubborn type. If he had to use force to convince her, he would do so.

Emotions would not get in his way. He would make sure of it.
"Oh? You're in a good mood? Why, did you bully a few children on the way here?"
Rose's attention shifted to the flame coming from Ferocious's hand, only for it to be extinguished in an instant.
What the hell?... Is he...No, that's impossible-It's just a trick!

"...Can't say the same for you, because you're always on the run. Can't you be a little more low profile," "Rose?"

At that moment, Rose burst out, incapable of listening to the man talk any longer.

She suddenly lunged at the cocky soldier, all too happy to shut him up. She wouldn't kill him, never...She began to blindly throw punches at the man, not even caring if they hit. Left, right, left, right... She was in a state of blind fury, something that would eventually be her downfall. As she continued throwing punches, she began yelling at the man:

"Low profile?! Who the hell do you think you are?! If it wasn't for people like YOU, I wouldn't HAVE to keep a low profile!!! Because of you people.... Because of you!!!! How dare you show your faces like you're the saviors of the world?! You're not special- you're just like the rest of us!!!"
With the water and icicles fully keeping the attention of the DNS soldiers Ains decided to start taking advantage of the situation. Under his sleeves he whipped out two small katars. There were two bottles on his waste that allowed the thin knives through the neck. Inside the knives were dipped into a clear solution. Quickly Ains pulled the weapons back out and started to go in with quick slashes. Even a small cut still knocked out the DNS soldier. After his half was done he wiped the blades off and retracted them. "It is a paralysis mixture. They will not be able to move for several hours. Let's get going shall we?"


"Nice of you to steal my fun, but I don't need you telling me what to do," Aquaeous sneered in slight irritance. He'd underestimated her, snagged her fun, and now he was speaking to her as though she was going to wilingly be his companion. Yeah right. Flipping a blue strand of hair behind her ear, Aquaeous, let a burst of water raise her over the wall that Rose & Ferocious and had gone over.

She glanced over her shoulder at Ains, "Tootles," She waggled her fingers in the air. She didn't hate him from taking away her fun, but she was annoyed. He didn't look like he would care, though, so Aquaeous didn't feel very guilty. She landed on the top of the wall, let the water dissipate into nothing and then jumped, landing on the ground on the other side.

Standing up, she brushed dust off her skirt and looked around. Now... Where did that guy go off to ?



Ferocious Strife

He found her amusingly annoyed and although her comment did not sting, it for some reason reminded him of the blue haired girl he'd left with the DNS soldiers. A fleeting thought wondered if she would be okay. Still, he glared at Rose, waiting for her response. When she burst into anger, lunging at him with a flurry of strikes, Ferocious was prepared. He was effectively able to block her attacks, especially because she was hitting him blindly out of rage.

"Stop making this harder on yourself. How hard can it be to just stay out of sight?" Ferocious continued to taunt her. He hoped that she would agree, but her obstinacy seemed imminent. "Don't you want to live ?" He locked her fists into his own, stopping her punches short, his eyes narrowed.

He was starting to get angry.

What exactly was this girl playing at? Did she really expect to get away without more trouble from the guards just a few blocks over? These thoughts ran through Ains head until one thought stopped it all. What did it matter to him? His one and only objective was to find Morrigan and perhaps live in peace after slaughtering anyone in his way. Just thinking of her made his heart race and hope renewed. Instead of following the girl, Ains decided to just stroll on out of the alley and begin his search once again. After taking one step out however, the guards he had thought about earlier were already on him like vultures to a new fresh piece of meat. "Halt! Identification #8890 Ains Valismos." A monotone voice rang out in front of the guards. Apparently this was a new type of technology the humans had manufactured, fully functional Darkstalker hunting robots. They were easy enough to take down alone but when they were with the group, which ninety nine percent of the time they were, they became much harder to defeat.
"Good day gentlemen, how may I be of service?" Ains asked as if he were just asked to aid the police.
"My buddy here says your wanted pal, and I have not had a bit of action all day."
"I'm sorry to hear that. Unfortunately I have no information that can be of use to you and from the looks of things the same could be said you. So that leaves us with a rather inefficient circumstance does it not? We should just say our goodbyes and be on our way." Ains suggested seeing the commander's face become red with anger.
"Nobody mocks me like that!" He yelled. "Troops standard firing formation! Fire!" With his command the group of around six men got into line and took aim. As they fired Ains quickly made his way back into the alley.
"Why do none of them every listen?" He asked himself as he rushed for the wall that Rose had jumped over. His wings came forth allowing him to make the distance over the wall. Landing very smoothly, like any gentleman of a Darkstalker would, he retracted his wings and hid them. Finally he made his way down the alley only to find another confrontation and the two girls from earlier.
"What do you think...I've been trying to do this whole time?!" Rose yelled back at Ferocious, her fists shaking under his hands as he skillfully countered her sudden attacks.
"And why does it matter to you, anyway?! You're just another soldier, blindly following orders! Or do you get your kicks messing with people like this?! I don't see how you can still smile... Do you know how much damage you've caused?! You've killed people who've done nothing wrong, seperated kids from their parents? I want to know.... What gives you the right to do that?!"
Instead of retreating like any sane person would, Rose kpet her offense going, shoving her fists deeper and deeper, as if she thought she could make it through Ferocious' hands. This probably wasn't the best of choices, as two things were going against Rose.

1: Her arms and wrists were beginning to get fatigued.
2: This man had severely out-manuevered her in combat so far, and he still had a weapon.

Despite these two things, Rose didn't budge.
I won't back down... Not yet, not until I find her....

Ferocious Strife

"Whatever you've been doing up till now, you've been doing WRONG." Fero spat at Rose, mildly irritated. He could see why the DNS was so bent on trying to capture her. They hated to lose. She hated to get caught. It was the perfect clash of emotions. "Don't demean me, Rose! You're running away from the truth!" Ferocious argued, grabbing another punch before shoving her to the ground roughly. He felt fire burning inside him, threatening to unleash itself on this stubborn Darkstalker, but he held it back, running a hand through his hair to calm himself down.

I can't let my emotions control me. There has to be another way. He flipped the gun out of his holster and raised it, pointing it directly at her.

"You won't fail to cooperate now, will you Rose ?




"Hey carrot-top! You leave her alone!" Aqua shouted, shaking her fist in Ferocious' direction as she ran towards their little scene, "I knew you were trouble," she hissed at him, a couple feet behind him. Her eyes shot daggers at his back. She watched and then, blinked. Did she just hear him laugh?

"I told you stay out of my way, kid."

"Don't kid me, you monster! You're no better than the rest of them, cornering her like that and manipulating her emotions! I HEARD EVERYTHING!" Aquaeous was distraught. She kept getting strange flashbacks by simply looking at this guy. She wanted to know why, but she couldn't get herself to ask. This was her way of throwing off that frustration that was building up inside her. Who was he ? Why was he having this effect on her ?

"You think you're so clever!" Aqua ran forward and lunged at him, grabbing his arm and hanging onto, kicking at his stomach in a wild rage.
Things seemed to be getting heated between the girl and the boy who was from the DNS. Ains new they could not stay there for long, after all they were after all three of them. With patrols snooping around the area so close to the hotel he could not very well return back home. Instead he looked down at a piece of paper that had been kicked up against his leg by the wind. From the looks of it the thing was for a tournament. The prize well that was up to the victor's imagination. "A blatant trap, but probably worth checking out. She might be there." Ains said out loud not sure if anyone heard him. He noticed there was a little bit of tape left on the top of the poster and it still had a bit of a stick to it. In a split second he wrote a note on the back.

To Miss Aquaeous and Miss Cat,

If you wish to find out answers to many questions follow the front side of this paper. The tournament may not be for some time, but, I'm sure there will be more answers to find than a simple human trap. If you wish to find me just follow your nose.

~Ains Valismos

After the girl had hit Ferocious in the stomach Ains made a quick path for her. He slapped the note onto her back. "Later you two!" He shouted back expanding his wings and taking off. Just on the horizon he could see the arena built for the event.
As the winged man made his grand exit Rose, still on the ground, hopped back up to her feet, her eyes blazing with determination. She wouldn't let her emotions get the best of her, not anymore. Noticing the hastily-written note on the girl's back, Rose reached forward, grabbing the girl's arm before her last attack could connect. Rose yanked her to her side, subtly shaking her head, signalling for her to follow the winged man. Once again facing the soldier, Rose gave him a spine-tingling glare, readying herself for another attack. She began to speak calmly:

"I don't know who you are.... or what fun you see in seperating children and families....Shedding blood... and starting meaningless battles! All I know is...I'll stop you all....without killing! But now...I can't waste time with you!

Rose once again took hold of the girl's arm, turning herself from the man, and dashing off towards the appointed stadium, intending to point plenty of distance between that odd man. The tournament... Is this...the tournament?! Then...I have to win!
I feel... cold...
Red, gushing blood came to the sight of one Jeremy Konol, D.N.S rookie.
He saw the sword, huge that it was, embedded deep into his shoulder blade, and another, through his gut, the cold steel drenched in his own blood.
His weapon, a brand-spanking new assault rifle, with only about half a clip emptied, lied several feet away from him. Broken, smashed by a strong strike of one of the very weapons stuck in him.
His handgun, a side arm, thrown in terror of the threat, was nowhere seen in his now fading vision.
No chance... Damn...
His death knell approaching, he thought of the one thing he felt remorse for...
His family.
A beautiful wife, and child, a new love blooming only 3 years ago...
Only to be shattered by... the Darkstalkers.
A short, barking, laugh, slammed him back to the ephemeral world he inhabited. A sound, what a sound, to hear at the Grim Reaper's door.
Still alive, are we? Heh... Good... cooed the voice, coming from in front of him.
He managed enough strength to look up at the voice.
He froze.
A man, not too different from himself, stood hovering in the air.
Tar color skin, red pants...
And four tentacles, two holding him up in air, two crossed each other, mimicking his real arms.
The face, with green eyes, staring at his, with deadly purpose.
And to top it all off...
He was smiling.
Smilin' at his death, at his premature, young life. Snuffed out, by none other.
Terror, was the only thing he knew.
As well as the last.

Heh... Heheh...
He loosed the sword from the man's shoulder, gut, and took a bit of effort to rip the bloody edge lodged in his skull.
Poor bastard... he said aloud, not talking to anyone in general.
He began to walk away, kicking a few of the dead men's bodies, cackling as he did so.
Don't mess with meeeee! Don't! Mess! With! MEEEEEEE! he began to sing, twirling the swords around, flecking more blood on the white-washed walls. The last note he held out, like an ending to an ostentatious Italian opera.
He began to grow bored, tiring of the men's silent conversations.
He crawled up the glass of the roof they choppered in, and made his way to the roof.
... I weep for these men... I'm sorry.
He felt that voice, somewhere, deep within the back of his skull, occupying the space like a butter cream icing on a cake.
He cared not, for it didn't interfere with him. Some voice, big deal.

Before he scaled to the roof, a whiz flew by his ear, cracking the pavement, tingling his sensitive ears.
Some man had shot a pistol at him. And missed.
Big MISTAKE! he bellowed, as he grabbed the man by the throat, broke his arm with the pistol, and pinned him to the wall.
A weird, gurgling sound, distinctly reminiscent of a scream, uttered from the man who missed.
A for effort. F for missing. he teased, loosening the grip to let him breath just enough to keep him conscious.
Let your last words to enter your mind be that of the enemy, and you will have died in failure. Let the last words you hear be...
He paused for one second, as a cheesy, dramatic effect, when the man, almost inaudibly whispers...
Pavor Nocturne...
Nocturne's face contorts into a rage.
He tightens the grip on the neck, and another black tentacle grabs his legs.
He pulls in opposite directions.
A sickening, stifled scream pierces the air, as copious blood sheds onto the floor.
Asshole... He stole my line. he says, throwing the now rent man away.
He scales the wall to the roof of the abandoned mall.
Time to find a new hideout. he thinks.
He darts off across buildings torwards where?
Only he and the weeping conscious in his mind know.

He began to scale the many buildings, scaring innocent bystanders to death, growling and manically laughing at them as he searched, higher and higher, untill he reached a tall, isolated building, and he began to search the landscape, comically upside down, making submarine periscope sounds. He then found an arena, which caught his eyes immediately.
"Oooh... Interesting..."

He mused, as he scoped the landscape of the arena, hoping to go down there, and see what it looks like.

Ferocious Strife

Ferocious growled angrily and threw his gun to the ground in a angered fit. Aquaeous fierce-minded punches had been little more than small attacks to him, but he was annoyed that he had failed. Moreover, the return of his powers signaled that there was something eerily important about that blue-haired chick & if he didn't find out what it was soon enough, the DNS would be on her trail more than ever. He scowled, turning to head back.

Rose's words didn't affect him at all. He was used to hearing that. Used to manipulating his opponent into believing his malicious pretense. That wasn't the problem right now, though, Ferocious thought, mindblown.

He had a a lot of thinking to do.



"Hey-ah, hey! What are you doing?!" Aqueous protested as Rose dragged her along, taking a mad dash for who knew where, "Stop! Stop, I wanted to talk to him!" she exclaimed, as then, breathless from all the running, caught herself in silence, glancing over her shoulder to see that the man had already left. Who was he ? Aqueous wondered, and why did he make her feel so strange? Did Rose feel it ? Is that why she was running away ?

She bit her lip as they approached a stadium, "Why are we going in there?" Aqua demanded.

Apparently she hadn't read the tournament sheet.

Rose loosened her grip on Aqueous' arm, removing the tournament flyer from her back. For a few moments, Rose's expression was serious, as she explained to the girl:

"Little girl, he wasn't fighting seriously yet... He could have killed us both any time he wanted to... I'm sorry, but it looks like you're wrapped up in this conflict."

She's so young... And already, she's had to witness violence and death... And..that man...

Rose's usual face returned as she tried to lighten the mood a bit.

"So, umm....Did you know that man?" They smell so similiar... But why?

Rose balled up the tournament flyer, not needing it to explain the tournament.

"That winged man seems to think we can all find answers here...even though it's probably just a trap. The winner of this thing wins a tour of the main DNS facility... And that place should have answers.... Lots of them. We're going to have to spring that trap, or rather... I'll have to. You don't have to enter; You're still young, you know... You don't have to...."

Rose's voice stopped as a rather high-ranking DNS officer appeared in her eyesight. We're...here.

A multitude of armed DNS soldiers patrolled the area calmly, unified. The guard who had halted looked at the pair, as if he didn't notice the odd appearance.A smile on his face, he directed the girls to the colosseum, giving them instructions.

"If you wish to participate in the tournament, please talk to that man over there."

Rose whispered to Aqueous once he was out of sight,
"Be careful...A smile is the best way to decieve someone."

Following the guard's directions, they arrived at the registration table, occupied by a man dressed in a dark lab coat.

"You both wish to compete in the tournament? Let's see... Miss Rose... and Miss...Aqueous? Very well. Here are your keys. The red keycard is your pass to enter the colosseum, while the yellow card is your room key. Good luck!"

Looking forward, Rose's eyes were met with a magnificent sight. A circular area, constructed from light granite. Columns appeared to guard the front entrance, adorned with what appeared to be Aztec hieroglyphics. The ground ahead was not ground at all, but black marble. The sun's rays reflected off the marble, obscuring Rose's eyesight for a moment. An enormous crowd was gathering inside, full of excited conversation and laughs.

So this is where...Mom...

"Where's that winged man?"

Rose looked all around her, waiting for the man impatiently.
((Quick question...is it late afternoon?))

Standing on the arena, Delano stared at the empty space before him. A soft breeze picked up, wiping his brown hair about wildly over his deep crimson hues.

His expression remained unchanged, a sullen, yet determined look.

"So this is the place...where it all begins..." the words poured from his lips in a slow and calm fashion. Feeling a sudden snazzy electric shock run through his still frame, he suddenly glanced heaven wards, his eyes keenly alert to catch a figure soaring high in the endless blue skies.

After watching the stranger disappear out of sight, he turned. Giving his back to the arena he headed out of the place. His final destination, a mystery to himself...

Where was he... where was that winged man....
In a sudden outburst, Rose yelled,
"Don't call us here and not show up!!"
Fists clenched, Rose looked skywards, catching what looked like a man gliding in the sky.
Is that him?
Before she had time to see more clearly, another soldier stopped to give the pair a message.
"I'm sorry, but I'll have to ask you to quiet down. You're threatening the spectators. Please make your way into the tournament area."
Rose gripped Aqueous' hand a bit more tightly than necessary, leading her to the designated location.
"I don't trust this....I don't trust any of this..."
Then, the ears atop her head twitched again, as an odd smell also caught her attention.
What was that?...More like us?
A particular scent caught her attention, as she tried zoning in on it sniffing all around, paying no mind to the soldiers at all.
A sudden chill ran through Rose's entire body as an overwhelming sense of fear washed over her.
This ferocity... Bloodlust?! But where? I have to get her inside....now.

Acting as calmly as possible, Rose turned to the girl once more, telling her:
"We need to go inside, okay? They'll probably be closing it off soon, so let's hurry."
This was true, as the sun was just beginning to set, traveling south, the sky turning a vivid mix of purple and pink.