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Chapter 7 - Chapter 7

A collaborative fic by me and my friend. I hope you enjoy it!

Chapter 7 - Chapter 7

Chapter 7 - Chapter 7
Konno awoke early the next morning to scout where they would be assuming guard duty. She donned a cloak to conceal herself and briskly walked down the wet, gray cobblestone street. A fine mist had begun to fall, and the cobblestones were slippery. Kinetica had at one time been a fine city, but now it was falling into disrepair due to the war. Several buildings had large chunks of rock missing, and a few were completely leveled. Konno passed a large, magnificent church on her way to the palace, and stopped momentarily to gaze sadly at the enormous stained glass window depicting the three gods of Numenroad, the ancient founder of Kinetica. The three were Kiros, god of fire, Moonrad, god of earth, and Lasdar, goddess of water. They circled Numenroad as he held a magnificent broadsword. Konno dropped her gaze back to the streets, and continued on. It was now raining quite heavily. People were taking shelter in nearby buildings. Konno broke into a run and stopped only when she reached the shelter of the palace’s large stone archway. She lowered her hood and pushed open one of the large oaken double doors. It was moderately dark inside the High Chamber, and Konno had to wait for her eyes to adjust before moving on. There were three guards standing by the door to the guard lobby. Konno approached them and said in the language of Kinetica, “My name is Konno. My squad and I are here as Royal Guard reinforcements. I just want to inspect our patrol area.” The guards nodded, satisfied and moved to let Konno inside. She entered and took a moment to look around before pressing on into the lobby. It was a simple room, with two windows on adjacent walls, a weapons locker, a table with several chairs set around it, and a few tapestries on the wall. Konno nodded to herself, content that there was little need for concern of any kind. She left the palace and walked back through the downpour to the inn the crew was staying at. She shook off her cloak and hung it on the coat rack next to the door. She saw Zion and Allendar at a nearby table, but no one else was around.
“Hey guys,” Konno said, sitting. Allendar nodded to her, smiling.
“You look terrible,” Zion said, laughing. Konno ran her hands through her soaking wet hair.
“It’s a perfect gale outside, Zion,” she replied. Zion nodded.
“I know. I can hear the rain from all the way in here.” Konno sighed.
“If it keeps up like this, guard duty is gonna be hell...”

The next morning dawned bright and cloudless. Konno, Allendar, and Dominique started off for the palace wearing their guard uniforms.
“So do we know our routines yet?” Allendar asked.
“No, I figure we’ll play it by ear,” Konno replied. Allendar gave Konno an incredulous look but nodded and the trio walked in silence until they reached the palace.
“Names?” the head guard asked. Konno handed him three pieces of paper. Each piece had their name, a fake rank, and other tidbits of information. The guard nodded and allowed them inside. They immediately headed for the guard lobby. Inside, they took off their cloaks and grabbed three spears hanging on the weapons rack. They went into the High Chamber and approached the head guard. He saw them and pointed to the huge metal double doors straight in front of them. They continued through the doors and found themselves in a room of gigantic proportions. The ceiling was a fine marble with an enormous circular window set in the middle. A beam of light illuminated a huge rug on the ground, which depicted Numenroad and the three gods. At the center of the beam of light was the throne for the King of Kinetica. Along the walls were fine brass pillars with strange carvings on them Konno didn’t recognize. The King was nowhere to be found, so the three took positions by the doorway. Not long after they began their shift, the King, young and muscular, burst in the door looking like the happiest man on earth. He noticed Konno and the others only after he had taken a seat.
“Ho, there! Who are you?”
“Royal Guard reinforcements, my lord,” Konno replied. The King nodded, satisfied. Suddenly a second figure walked in. He was older than the king, and much dirtier. He wore a leather vest and cloth pants held up by a shabby belt. He had a bushy, grizzly beard, and his scraggly hair fell down to his shoulders.
“My lord, may I speak with you?” he said in a scratchy voice. “In private?” he added, noticing Konno and the others.
“There’s no need for us to be alone, Crow. Just say what you need.”
“Well, m’lord, The Order is full and ready to assist you in your invasion of Cellstar.”
Konno stifled a cry. The Order? Assist Kinetica? It made no sense. She shot a glance at Allendar. He looked quite a confused as she, but Dominique looked only mildly surprised. The King waved a hand and Crow bowed. He briskly walked out of the room.
“You three may leave, I need to be alone right now,” the king said. Konno bowed and exited, followed by Allendar and Dominique. They sneaked out of the palace and followed Crow through the city streets. When he stopped to look at a piece of fruit, Allendar grabbed him and dragged him down a nearby alley. Allendar kicked him in the gut to quiet him, and Konno grabbed his collar.
“Who do you work for?” she asked.
“Why should I tell you?” he replied. Allendar punched him in the face and Crow cried out.
“Now, who do you work for?” Konno said again.
“Th-The Order...” he muttered. Konno looked at Allendar. He shrugged. Konno turned back to Crow.
“Who sent you?’
“The Supreme Chancellor.”
“What is this about The Order helping Kinetica?”
“I-it’s a scam...Evander sent someone else to Cellstar...they’re gonna attack each other...and The Order will be there to clean up whoever wins...”
Konno looked at Allendar again. He had a look of concern on his face.
“Good. Thank you for your time, Crow,” Konno said. She stepped back and Allendar beat Crow into unconsciousness. Konno led Allendar and Dominique back to the inn and held an emergency meeting in the back of the pub. She told the whole story to the rest of the crew and silence ensued. Finally Allendar asked, “So whom do we serve now, Captain?”
Konno looked out the window and back at Allendar. “Ourselves.”


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