Going Against the Flow: Chapter 3- A Meeting Planned by Fate

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Lorin knelt among the underbrush of the forest, smelling the wind for any scents that might come his way. He had heard that Moo's forces had a camp stationed in these woods and decided to come and get information. After he caused a ruckus. His arm hurt like hell. The bandage needed to be changed again. "Time to move to a different spot." As he started to move, he heard a loud roar come from the woods. It sounded like a Leo. The Leo were hated by the Chetal. The Cheetal have hated them since the Red Wars. The wars were over 155 years ago, but prejudice ran deep among the two tribes. Lorin was an exception to the rule. A group of Chetals realized that they must put the past behind them and had merged with a Gali to symbolize the need to merge with the Leos as friends. Their group had been small, however. They called themselves "The White Capes" because of the white Gali capes they wore around their waists. Other Cheetals called them Betrayers. Lorin rushed toward the sound. As he got nearer, he came upon a clearing in the woods. A Leo fought among many Zuums, Dinos, and Jells. He held a long slender sword in his hand which was covered with a white-hot flame. Lorin recognized him as a member of the Leo Holy Order, a group of Leo that also put the past behind them. Only Leos belonging to that sect wore a silver cross earring and could cover their swords with a Holy Flame. Lorin unsheathed his swords, rushed forward, and cut a Jell in two. He pressed his back to the Leo's. "We will fight better if we fight back to back!" He yelled. The Leo kept fighting off his attackers with his blade. "Gotcha! Holy Flame!" A large white flame erupted from his sword and enveloped a group of mosters. It raised the tempurature to high levels, but there was no smell of burning flesh. The mosters caought in the holy blaze screamed in agony and torture, as not only their bodies but also their hearts and souls experienced excruciating torment. He was suddenly blindsided by a Jell and fell to his knees, stunned. A Dino raked his claws across the Leo's back. The Leo's eyes grew wide open, the pain being so great that it cut through the haze of his dazed state. Lorin turned around. He jumped up and sliced the Dino in two. The Leo got up, blood streaming from his back. They went back-to-back again. Lorin could feel his ally's blood against his back. The Leo turned his head. "Fall back a bit! I have an idea!" The two inched their way to the back of the clearing, fighting off attackers as they came. The Leo yelled out, trying to be heard over the din of battle.

"Cover me! When I say move, you had better move out of the way!" Lorin yelled out, "All right!" and started to fight off the attachers by himself. Both of his swords was a blur as he hacked and slashed at his attackers. Behind him, the Leo had put away his sword. He was bending at the knees a bit and a white glow enveloped his body. White orbs of holy energy rose from the ground at his feet and faded away as they reached eye level. He put put his palm and started to concentrate. A small ball of white energy formed on his palm and started to grow. It grew to the size of about a cantalope, then a large pumpkin. Lorin yelled with a hint of desperation.

"You done with whatever it is you're doing?" The ball was still expanding and beads of presperation formed on the Leo's forehead.

"Almost! Just hold them off a bit..." He felt a small sensation within his head, almost like a cosmic sort of PING!, giving him the signal that the attack was charged and finished. The fairly large ball of energy slightly glowed around the edges with a blue light. "Done! Run out of the area! Get away! This is gonna be a HELL of a blast!" Lorin ran out of the clearing as fast as his legs could carry him. The Leo jumped up with a backward flip, tossed the ball of energy at the enemies and ran in the direction of the Cheetal. He saw the Cheetal laying on his stomach with his hands on his head and the Leo did the same. A large pillar of light erupted from the direction of the clearing and shook the forest woth a large explosion. A strong wind blew from the exposion's direction, blowing dirt, twigs, and small rocks over the two warriors. Eventually the pillar of light started to get smaller and finally dissapear. The two looked at each other, got up, and walked to the clearing in silence. When they got there, it was if a small meteor had crashed into the area. All that remained of the site was a crater about 3 feet deep and as wide as the clearing. The camp of Moo's followers was completely destroyed and lost discs were in and around the crater. Lorin turned toward the Leo and put out his hand. "An awsome attack if I ever saw one. Name's Lorin. What's yours friend?" The Leo grabbed Lorin by the wrist and Lorin did the same. They pumped their arms up and down in a traditional greeting. "My name is Rys. The attack was called the Holy Lion Bomb and takes a great amount of energy to use. As well as a good amount of time needed to charge up." Rys heard a river in the distance and looked at the bloody bandage on Lorin's arm.

"You seem to be wounded and I hear a river. Let's go and sit by the water and rest." They walked for about tem minutes and came upon their destination. Lorin sat and unwrapped the blood-soaked cloth around his wound. "One of the damn Zuums ripped my wound open afresh while I was holdin them off." Rys looked at the slashes and scanned the area. He spotted a Ukrai bush, a bush upon which green, fragrant berries grew. He walked over, pulled a berry off, and ate it. It was tart and sweet. "Perfect. These should help." He gathered a handful of the berries and squished them between his claws, making a green, strong-smelling paste. He walked over to Lorin and opened his hand with the mushed-up berries. Lorin sniffed them. "Yeah. Ukrai berries. So?" Rys took Lorin's arm in his other hand. "Most people don't know this, but, well, this is gonna sting." Rys smeared the berries on Lorin's wound. Lorin drew in a sharp breath from the sting of the berries. "Most people don't know, but when ukrai berries are at the peak of their ripeness, they make a type of acid that helps in the healing of wounds and aids in keeping off infection. Luckily these were in the right season." Lorin wrapped another piece of cloth around the wound. "Thanks, but what were you doing here fighting against Moo's forces by yourself?" Rys started gathering sticks and twigs for a fire. "Moo's Joker army decimated my city. I swore revenge. I heard from a reliable source that one of Moo's armies were stationed in this forest and I decided to start avenging my people here." He made a fire with his sword and a piece of flint from his pocket. His back was to Lorin and Lorin noticed Rys's back. It has a long slash wound, and most of the blood was dry, but it still bled a bit.

"Good thing I came. Your back is bleeding from that Dino's attack. You want some bandages? I seem to have just enough left." Rys walked toward the river. "No. Save it, we may need it later. And besides, the pain has all but dissapeared. So why were YOU here, Lorin?" Lorin looked down at the dirt by his feet. "Moo also destroyed my city and my people. I am the last one, are you the last of your race as well?" Rys stood in the middle of the river, and grabbed at fishes by his feet. "Yes, I am also the last of my race. But let's not talk about these things." He fished with his claws and eventually caught four fish. He gutted them with a small knife that he kept in his pocket. Lorin was sleeping, recuperating from the battle. "Good." Rys thought. "He needs the rest. That was a mean wound on his arm." He then put fillets of the fish on sticks and put the sticks in the ground, in a way so that the fish hung over the fire. Rys took off his pants and started swimming in the river, cleaning off the dirt and sweat from the battle. His back ached from the wound he had suffered at the claws of the Dino. "Hope it doesn't get infected. When I get out, I'll sit with my back close to the fire. The heat will help fend off infection." He swam around for five more minutes, got out, put on his pants and sat with his back to the fire, letting the heat warm his golden fur and brown mane. The fish started to smell just about cooked and the odor woke Lorin from his sleep. Lorin looked at the fish over the fire. "You actually caught some fish! Is it done yet?" Rys took a bite of a fish. "Yep. Eat up. It's rather good." The two ate in silence and then went to bed. But sleep was not easy for them, as scenes of their burning city and dying friends haunted their dreams. Early the next morning they got up, put out the fire, and headed west; letting fate and the sun guide their way.

-- Celious (lionmage@hotmail.com), March 04, 2000

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