Tuesday, May 31, 2016

The Power Array Saga - Season Two - Part XII

Part XII – Face to Face

Momotaru swayed side to side slightly as he sat in the hovercraft with arms folded across his chest. He stared out across the vast expanse of desert. Ahead, he could see the barren, sandy terrain give way to the outskirts of the city. Soon he would be inside the place he never wanted to step foot in again, so long as he lived, the sun elf royal palace.
                “So, um, Iris-” Zahur tried to say before being interrupted.
                “It’s the Butterfly Samurai to you, confused little girl,” said Iris with a small, devious smile.
                Momotaru grumbled slightly.
                “Okay, Butterfly,” came the snarky reply from Zahur. “How exactly did you find us?”
                “What makes you think that I’ll just give up my secrets so easily?” Iris replied.
                “Well, I just thought… that,” said Zahur before trailing off sheepishly and looking out across the roofless convertible hovercraft. The wind whipped at her short purple hair like a tattered flag being assaulted at the top of the mast. “Well where are we going? Can you tell us that at least since you’ve kidnapped us?”
                “You two came of your own accord,” Iris fired back. “I kidnapped no one and you’re free to go if you like but know that powerful forces have amassed against you and without us, you’re doomed.”
                “I’ve been doing pretty good on my own,” said Zahur. “Who says I need you two?”
                “The only thing that you’ve managed to do so far is get the entire sun elf police force chasing you,” said Iris.
                Zahur turned away, pouting. She watched the desert melt away to be replaced by the urban forest that now surrounded them. As they neared the under-city central area, they approached a long line of hovercrafts waiting for their chance to ride the elevator into the floating capital of Aver.
                Iris swerved away from the growing traffic and entered the much shorter VIP lane for those individuals who had obtained the secret force field passcode which allowed direct entrance to the city. Within minutes they were being levitated between the several hundred thousand meters of metal and magic that separated the under-city from the floating capital.
                When they reached the street level of Aver, they were immediately surrounded by the sun elf police force. Hover cars blocked the street and sirens blared. Officers on foot approached the car with las-guns drawn.
                Sergeant Hoplow and Major Rufap stood watching several meters away and leaned against their hovercraft. Hoplow quickly clasped his hands together and rifled through a series of hand symbols in order to channel his mana. He cast a spell that would amplify the volume of his voice. “Get out of the car with your hands up,” demanded Sergeant Hoplow.
                The three humans in the car hesitantly complied, slowly raising their hands. Police officers quickly swarmed over the three traveling companions and placed them in green, glowing magical handcuffs. As they were ushered towards the large, hovering van, Iris Longwing fought as if she were headed to the gallows.
                “Hey!” shouted Iris as she was pushed passed Major Rufap. “We had a deal damnit! Let me go!”
                “I’m sure we can find something to charge her with,” said Sergeant Hoplow. “Take her away.”
                The three humans were thrown into the hovering van. The heavy, metal doors were slammed shut.
                “So,” said a sarcastic Momotaru. “How well is that deal working out for you now?” He eyed Iris warily with a furrowed brow.
                Iris could only cut her eyes at him.
                “What do you think they’re going to do to us?” asked Zahur, voice breaking with each word.
                Momotaru did not bother to look in her direction. He shrugged his shoulders and turned his head away.
                “I wouldn’t worry too much,” said Iris. “His mommy won’t let anything happen to precious prodigal son.” She wore a wry smile and a playful light glinted in her colorful Acro eyes.
                Momotaru did not react, sitting motionless and silent in the van until the vehicle zoomed upwards several minutes later. In a matter of minutes, the large gates of the sun elf royal mansion were visible through the windows. Unfortunately for the three criminals sitting in the back of the police van, they had no windows and had no idea where they were being taken.
The back door opened and sunlight flooded the dark interior. The guards ushered their prisoners forward with a wave of the hand. They each jumped out one by one and were led through the front gate of the palace. Stopping in front of the porch, they looked to the top of the small flight of steps where the sun elf princess and her parents stood.
Momotaru swallowed the lump in his suddenly dry throat as he laid eyes on the maternal half of his lineage.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

The Power Array Saga - Season Two - Part XI

Part XI – Revelation

The phone inside the top floor office of the precinct rang and Major Rufap hurriedly picked it up.
               “Go for Rufap,” said the major.
               “You left a message for me to contact you,” said the voice on the other end. It was the voice that the two police officers had been waiting to hear from ever since they left their meeting with the sun elf princess. The Butterfly Samurai had finally contacted them.

In the desert, Momotaru sat on a log with his shirt off and poked at the fire in front of him with a stick.
               “How much longer are we gonna have to be here?” asked Arif Zahur who lay on her back with limbs sprawled outward.
               “And where exactly would you like us to go?” asked Momotaru. “It’s not like we can go back to Aver any time soon thanks to you.”
               “Well anywhere but here,” said Zahur. “We’ve been here for forever.” She dragged out the last word to amplify the agony she felt by remaining in the remote location.
               The old crone came limping out of her hut. She carried a thick, leather-bound book that she sat on the log beside Momotaru as she took a seat next to him.
               “You’ve been slacking in your reading of the sacred text these past few days,” said the old crone.
               “I needed to take a break,” said Momotaru. “I’ll start reading again soon.”
               “You will read now,” said the old crone.
               “Why should I?” asked Momotaru. “There’s always tomorrow.”
               “Not for you,” said the old crone.
               Both Momotaru and Zahur looked at one another with eyes wide in shock. Turning sharply towards the old crone, Momotaru fixed his icy stare upon her.
               “What exactly is that supposed to mean?” asked Momotaru with furrowed eyebrows.
               “It doesn’t matter,” said the old crone while wearing a large, toothless grin. “What does matter is the company that you’re expecting.”
               Arif Zahur looked to Momotaru with a raised eyebrow.
               “It’s your crazy ex-girlfriend that we ran into earlier,” said Zahur. “Isn’t it? Who is she and why is she so crazy?”
               As if in response, a hover shuttle appeared in the distance, hovering several meters in the air as it approached. Momotaru and his companion hurriedly tried to gather up what little stuff that belonged to them. It was only a matter of seconds before the hovercraft was touching down next to the shack of the old hag.
               Momotaru glowered as he stood and glared menacingly at his old adversary, the Butterfly Samurai.
               “Good,” said Iris Longwing as she jumped out of the convertible hovercraft. “You two are packed up and ready to go. I have to take you two back to town. There’s some very important people wanting to have a word with you, Momo.”
               “I’m not going anywhere with you, Iris,” said Momotaru. “Besides, I know if the police haven’t hired you to find me yet then they’ve probably hired someone else who’ll be looking for both of us. We need to stay ahead of them at all costs. Besides, Arif is one small guy, I don’t think he’ll last too long in prison.”
               Iris burst out laughing at the comments made by her longtime friend. “Wait,” said Iris as she bent forward, holding her stomach and slapping her upper thigh while laughter burst forth from her lips. “I can’t believe that you’ve actually developed a sense of humor, Momo. That’s the funniest thing I’ve heard in a while.”
               “Well,” said Momotaru hesitantly. “I don’t think it was that funny… I mean, I think Arif can kind of hold his own if we ever get caught. Plus he’ll have me to look out for him.”
               Arif Zahur with eyes wide and pleading quickly looked to Iris as they seemed to speak using only their eyes. The smile on Iris face was quickly replaced be a stern frown.
               “Wait,” said Iris shaking her head. “You’re serious aren’t you… you have no idea, do you?”
               “No!” shouted Zahur springing forward to stand in front of Iris. She shook her head furiously as she stared into the color shifting Acro Eyes of the Butterfly Samurai. “Don’t say anything please.”
               “What in the hell is going on?” asked Momotaru forcefully shoving the two of them apart. He looked down with a confused expression on his face and glared at his new traveling partner as a hint of a tear formed in Zahur’s eyes.
               Grabbing ahold of Momotaru’s rippling, chocolate brown arm, Iris seductively drew herself closer to Momotaru. Lightly touching his forearm, she traced a finger up to his neck as she blew seductively into his ear.
               “This one’s got a big secret,” said Iris with a slight giggle.
               “A secret,” said Momotaru confused as he looked back and forth between Iris and Zahur. “What exactly is she talking about Arif?”
               “N-nothing,” stuttered Zahur. “L-let’s get out of here.”
               “No way,” said Momotaru blocking Zahur’s path. “Before I go anywhere with anyone else, you’re gonna tell me exactly what’s going on… or else.” He rested a hand on the hilt of the blade hanging at his waist.
               “Ugh!” interrupted the old crone who still sat in front of the fire. “It’s your own fault Momo, you’ve let your senses become dulled. You should have been able to sense that your new traveling companion is female.”
               “What!” shouted Momotaru.
               The Butterfly Samurai threw her head back and laughed all the more louder.
               Arif Zahur turned her head away, abashed and unable to meet the confused expression on Momotaru’s face.