As I walked out of Benny's building then started toward home, I noticed that not a single troll got anywhere near me. Looking at the many, about to kill their selves to get out of my way, actually made me feel a hell of a lot better. I just had to get my levels higher, I mean 5 levels was damn good I'd say I was 3 past the most powerful on the council but knowing Cedrick he'd upped at least 20 levels in 200 years I was 1 higher than him then, so he was 19 then I did 5 so I had 14 more to go and not a lot of time to do it in.
I'd finished my exercises going up now 6 3/4 more than when I started a few days ago. Now at least I could stop him a bit maybe even hurt him enough for him to have to lay low and heal but I needed to go higher if I even wanted a slim chance to survive. Sighing I knew that I'd have to put more on the shield again. Maybe gain a few more days but I couldn't keep it going up or he'd catch on, break free sooner, then, I was dead for sure as most of the world was.
The hard thing right now was the fact that even with the bounties removed from my head there were still a lot of hot shot young beings and creatures out there thinking I was an easy mark.
I guess I was going to have to make an example of someone to get them all off my neck 'til I had dealt with Cedric. Though I wasn't really in a killing mood I knew it was going to take something like that to get these idiots to back off.
Oh sure the death of the trolls had helped quite a bit, but the stronger ones were going to get a lot more brazen if I didn't nip it in the butt, real quick.
I was headed to a really bad part of town, I guess I'd better get this over with. The toughest I knew of was down here in this cesspool somewhere all I really had to do was., diving out of the way of a fire ball, I smiled. Well that was quick, standing I put up a shield and started to walk toward my target. I could see his eyes grow larger as his fireballs bounced off me.
I had to time this right, "heard you were after me piss head." I shouted gaining quite a lot of attention. "Yeah, heard you took the bounty off yourself but HE is still offering a bigger one, I aim to collect." He hissed at me. "You obviously haven't looked at my power," I smiled as he stared at me then his lips started to quiver.
"6 almost 7 levels higher?! It's a lie!" He shouted.
Waving my hand I didn't even try as I disintegrated him to dust with just a wave of my hand. There was a massive screaming and running away from me. Good I thought this ought to get around really quick always did down here. I waited I knew the council would be there soon I'd have to explain what I had done and why. Sure enough the council was there within 3 minutes hmmm, record time for them.
Looking around I saw the council leader and my friend were conferring. "Tyrome Greenstick what is the meaning of this?" the younger members started to demand. Taking a breath I just this hoped this worked the way that I hoped it would. "I had 4 bounties on my head; those fortunately for their claimers have been negated. It was then that I found out that Ced., he had put one out on me. I came here to talk to that pisshead; he thought he could kill me and get the bounty." I told them.
"He put a bounty on you? Is he that confident that he can break the barrier?" Many of them asked. "Yes, not only that but he has far surpassed the level the council was at when it was erected. I'd estimate he is 20 levels higher now than he was then, I have no doubt he will be free soon." I told them all shaking a bit to emphasize just how strong he'd gotten.
They all talked for a minute then the leader spoke. "Tyrome you are hereby authorized to go up as far as necessary to combat this evil that is almost upon us." Bowing I said, "I will do the best I can as I always have for the council, even though some members are more stubborn than most," here I looked at Cloe her lips drawn back in an almost feral growl.
Chuckling a moment I continued to stare at her 'til the council thanked me for the warning and left. Shaking my head I decided I had to find out just what in the hell Cloe had against men, me in particular.
I had a little time before I had to go back home so I decided to walk around a bit. It had been a while since I'd been to the poor end of the main magic dimension.
I'd gone maybe a block when several young mages stepped out, blocking my path. "Hey asshole!" The apparent leader of the group said. "That was my father and though he was a piece of crap, he was still my father." Nodding I looked a little harder, yeah I could see the complete ugliness of the father in him. "I advise you to back off and leave, I am far more powerful than you think. I didn't even use my full power against him. Then again if you want to be a dark stain on the ground bring it on." I told him, I wasn't in the best of moods after all the shit I had been dealing with.
When the rest of the gang ran off when I started to power up, I realized that this little shit had a death wish. I had just raised my hand to freeze him when a bolt from behind me struck him effectively freezing him.
Looking back I saw the elder's son ah shit! I really didn't need him here right now. All I could think of was if he got killed his old man would be after my ass for a while, hell I didn't even want to think of his mother. "What in the hell are you doing down here," I shouted at him. Smirking he then smiled, "I have uh. vices as I am sure you do," the little shit said looking my up and down.
Yeah I had them, pretty damn pathetic too couldn't get laid in a free whore house with all of them wanting any man. Chuckling I waited to see what the boy was going to do. When he didn't move I just shook my head, so he was just helping me, damn it! It was a sure damn fire way to get your ass killed. I'd have to kick his ass later; right now I had to deal with piss head's son. I knew he couldn't really hurt me let alone even touch me, but I had to cool this idiot off BEFORE I had to kill him.
I saw that the idiot was still trying to break free, not a good idea right now.
Walking up to him I whispered in his ear. "I'm going to let you go, I know you are the last of his line, my power is several levels higher. I could kill you very easily, don't make me have too!" The young man's eyes grew wide when he felt my power as I was leaning close to him. Vigorously he shook his head, looking at him a last time I gave him a stern look then unfroze him. Suffice it to say that the man didn't bother saying good-bye as he high tailed it out of there.
Chuckling Tyrome watched him go, turning he thought again about blasting the elder's son but thought better of it, he have to teach him that you follow up on what you do. Tyrome knew it was more his fault than the elder's son after all he didn't know, yet. Had he known, Tyrome really would be kicking the young man's ass all over, oh well live and learn. "Thanks," Tyrome started, "you reminded me that, I have to start teaching all of you about following up on what you do when you freeze or knock out am opponent." The young man groaned great, even in the streets the man was teaching geez!
"Uh, you're welcome?" Chuckling at the perplexed young man Tyrome said, "it's alright, all of you need to learn, not following up is another thing that can get you killed or worse real quick." "Worse?
The young man asked. "Later this week it might give you nightmares, go enjoy as tomorrow is a day off." Tyrome told him. A wide grin then smile spread across the young man's face, "Good I will have time to do more than just pop in, on and in her!" Tyrome watched the young man flash out, damn he thought must be real nice to have a steady piece of ass.
Sighing Tyrome thought of Cloe, I have to do something soon or she's going to break, even as bad of a bitch as she was, he still couldn't do that to her. Flashing back to his office he might as well let Celina know about tomorrow, before she starts to get worried and calls the council worried. Stepping up to the outer office door I could hear subdued voices, a moment later I heard Celina scream.
"I said bitch, where is he!!!?" a male voice was yelling. I thought for a moment that Celina should be able to handle him, should that is, 'til I heard several other males laughing. I was afraid that this might have happened though I was expecting it, I wasn't this soon. Again I heard Celina scream then a bolt flew with several of the males yelling. "He's not here! I cannot open his office when he isn't here!" I heard her saying. Good girl I thought.
That's when they really pissed me off. I heard Celina scream again then I heard her start to choke, like a hand around her throat. I could feel my power start to climb you could come after me but you left MY women alone. My power started to flare when I heard one of the other voices yell that there was someone extremely powerful coming.
Pointing at the door, I watched as it exploded then the whole wall just disappeared. Ah! I see there were 10 of them. "I suggest you let her go before I just kill you in as painful a way as I can." I calmly said between clenched teeth. Laughing the one holding her said, "sure you want her come and.," he grabbed his throat starting to choke, his eyes wide when he realized there was nothing he could do to stop me.
"Since the rest of you didn't touch her I will allow you to leave with a limp, mess with me and you won't be able to eat solid food for a long time!" Pointing I took Celina out of their grip, placing her in another room, I turned back my wrath starting to build. I guess I was going to have to kill a few of them to get my point across. "So who wants to die first?" I ground out between my clenched teeth. That's when things went a little crazy, the leader screamed, "Get him!
He doesn't have the power to take all of us!" "Wanna bet!?" I said. They at first tried to surround me, tossing the leader against the wall I watched him slump unconscious. "Alright, last chance," I growled, "stay and not eat well for a while, leave and I'll over look it." Here my skin started to glow as did my eyes.
That's all it took for 5 of them as they scattered out the door the last 4? Well, it wasn't pretty, freezing all of them I first removed all their teeth, and then grew 3/4 of their mouths closed. I made sure their sex was shrunk and unresponsive to anything, I broke both legs and arms.
Lining them up against the wall I screamed for the council as soon as they appeared they tried to calm me seeing that my power was manifesting it's self physically. Pointing to the 4 on the wall I growled. "Take this garbage out before I have to incinerate it here! This one," I smacked him as hard as I could rattling his teeth, "is of no concern as he is dead!" The man looked up wild eyed, looking at each of the council his eyes begging. "You should have looked at the man further before you decided to attack him," I heard Cloe say, looking at her I could see that what she was saying was genuine.
Well I'll be damned I thought wonder what has changed in her to allow this? The council all bowed to converse, a few minutes later they looked up at the leader of the 10 men. "Tikon Propal, this council hereby approves your execution, the charges attacking a being of less power, employed by an agent of the council. Attacking a facility set up by the council. The last attacking an agent of the council, though it isn't well known Tyrome still works directly for the council, sentence to be carried out IMMEDIATELY!" The elder shouted to emphasize the point.
I could only half smile the rage somewhat less thanks to Cloe. Grabbing the struggling man we all flashed out to the center of the main magic realm. The Elder quickly repeated what he'd said before then looked at me. I heard several scream as I first lit the man on fire, then waved my hand as I let the fire slowly consume him.
I figured it would take an hour for him to die; maybe more I didn't care. Growling at the council, I flashed out. Arriving back in my office I went to see Celina. "Are they gone?" She asked her tear stained face looking up at me. My heart melted, all the rage was gone, I sat her in a chair and wrapped a blanket around her, hoping it would help stop the shivering she was doing.
A moment later Cloe showed up watching me. "Do you need anything else? I asked Celina. "No sir," she mumbled as more tears started, "I am sorry I failed you sir, I thought I could handle them." Stooping I gently tilted her face toward mine, "No Celina, you didn't fail me, I failed you." the look of shock on her face had me nodding yes. "Had I prepared you more, then you might have stood a better chance, though I have to say you did hold them off long enough for me to act.
I am proud of you, don't shake your head no, yes I am. When you are ready you can come back you will always have a job here." Celina's face lit up the first smile that I'd seen on her face that actually reached her eyes was plastered to her face. "You should believe him, as I have found out he is an honorable man." I heard Cloe behind me, we both looked at her an actual smile was on her lips.
"He does keep his word, unlike so many that I have met, trust me if he says it, he will do his best to make it happen." Ok, I must have had a shocked look on my face as Cloe started to giggle as did Celina joining in. Sighing I let it pass thinking about it I bet I did look funny as I too started to chuckle a bit. "I want you to go home Celina, I don't want you near the office or the school 'til you are ready, yes you'll get paid." Again Celina's face lit up hugging me, I was afraid that the conditioning might be thrown out of whack or her hero worship might kick in again.
"Thank you," she said. Then she stood up and handed me her keys. Shocked a moment I shook my head no, "they are keyed to you only, as I said, you can come back when you're ready, if you don't have the keys then how can you?" I asked.
Her eyes got wide then she nodded and smiled waving her hand she vanished. "That was a very good thing you did Tyrome Greenstick, most would have fired her on the spot or tried to disgrace her.
Yes, I know all about you and her, about your plans to marry her. Then you finding out that she was as bad as she was. It ripped your heart out; I imagine you threw yourself into work, trying to get killed didn't you?" When I didn't answer she nodded, "I thought so, and my god Tyrome how did you not end up like me?" I could only stare at her, end up like her?
"What they hell are you talking about?" I asked. Sighing she shook her head, "you really know nothing about me, though; I am starting to learn a few things about you I never knew before. I was bounty hunter for a short time." I looked at her like she had lost her mind. "How?" I asked, "You have to be trained and certified by the council I would have." Putting a finger to my lips she quieted me, "not if you took on the identity of one already established.
I am sure you remember Tyler Milton?" I turned away from her, yes I remembered the only partner I'd ever had, and yes I remembered it all.
"Yes I remember him; he was the last actual friend I had." "He was my father, I have hated you for so long Tyrome, a hatred that has eaten at me every day of my life. I vowed the day I heard he died and you disappeared that I would grow 'til I could kill you. I thought you had lied, that you had killed him. I assumed his identity searching for you, increasing my power but I could never surpass you." I hung my head the night of Tyler's death had changed me, I could never forgive myself, still hadn't not sure if I ever could.
Still with my head hung I tried to answer her, "He was a good man, a damn fine partner, I can never forgive myself for what happened that night." "I know that now, I have never met a mage as honorable as you, if I knew my father right, he was as proud to be your partner as you were to be his." Cloe said tears falling from her eyes.
Taking a deep breath she continued, "as I said I have hated you for so long it made me stronger, when I was offered the job as council member I took it without hesitation. I wanted to see you fail to be taken out by the one thing you seemed to be good out. No matter how bad I was to you, you always followed the rules did what was right, it really pissed me off.
Here I thought you were this deceitful, uncaring, unfeeling bastard.
Tyrome," here she bowed her head, "I was wrong." I was in shock Tyler's daughter? OMG! How I had missed him, there had been no finer mage I ever met, little did Cloe know but I had modeled myself after him. Every day I did what was right the way I knew he would have, though today he might frown a bit, I was a bit myself.
Sighing I made up my mind, "Cloe Tilton, I do hereby re." "No!," she yelled suddenly. "I am yours, please do not release me!" I stared into her eyes looking to see if the conditioning the doctor had installed was back, all I saw was an ardent honesty.
"Why? What you did was your right, I almost died myself when he was killed. It should have been me, he took the blast," tears began to fall unashamedly from my eyes, the memory still fresh in my mind. Cloe was shocked, then came to hold me as the tears wouldn't stop all over again I was reliving that night, I had seen the man warning Tyler, when the man had turned and fired at me, I had erected shields but they wouldn't be enough.
Then Tyler was screaming at me to move diving I felt the first skip part me but the second was going to hit. It seemed out of nowhere Tyler came flying in front of me taking the full brunt of the blast. Enraged I froze the man to his and my shock. Kneeling I tried to heal Tyler but he refused. "No kid, it is my time, you take up the mantle, here take this." He weakly handed me a star shaped pendant.
"One day when you meet my angry daughter, give this to her and tell her I was proud of her. Tell her that I love her and that I am sorry that I didn't make it home." "What?! NO! Tyler no, damn it NO!!!!!" I had screamed as he expired in front of me. Cloe was staring at me; the words I had spoken word for word seemed to send her into shock. "I thought he didn't care," she whispered, "I thought he got killed for nothing." Looking up at me she could see that I was a wreck.
It had been so long since I had dredged up the memories. Reaching in my shirt I removed the star pendant from around my neck, placing around Cloe's neck I could finally let Tyler go, his last request done. We both sat there on the floor, neither of us talking or moving, Cloe was fingering the pendant.
Whispering she told me, "thank you for honoring my father and his last request, finally I know and I can let go of the hatred that has festered in me for so long." She stood walking to me, wrapping her arms around me. She whispered in my ear, "I think Father would approve of us being together I almost feel he expected it." Nodding I looked up into her eyes, there was no hatred, nowhere near the amount of pain I had seen there.
What I saw was something I hadn't seen in a very, very long time, simply put love. Shocked a moment I thought how could she love me? Again she whispered, "Yes I love you, I'll be at home waiting for you." Here she smiled, I nodded waving my hand over her smiling, I hope she enjoyed.