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Aftermath3



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The Aftermath

Characters

The Darknesse

  • Supreme Overlord Bobby Moon
  • Stardust (Dusty)
  • Kitty

The Light

  • Bill Plunderbones
  • Cherie
  • Larry Daggerpaine
  • Richie Rich Goldvane
  • Jack Pistol

Mortem Members

  • 1st Emperor - Gomel - Both red eyes
  • 2nd Emperor - Unknown - Red and blue eye
  • 3rd Emperor - Unknown - Red and orange eye
  • Thousands of Shadow Warriors

Plot Synopsis

The Balance has been created and peace reigns over Earth and the Realm. But all is threatened when a mysterious ancient society (Mortem) comes back from extinction with a plan of pure malice. Their mission is simple: eradication of both Light and Darknesse, which would send the universe spiraling into chaos. With no other choice, The Impossible must be done; Light and Darknesse must unite against this Universal Threat.

Author's Note

The Aftermath brings back the societies and characters that you know and love, with a twist. Unlike similar stories, this tale is told from the Society of Darknesse point of view. This one difference gives the reader an entire new angle of the story to look at while possibly disproving some preconceived notions.

Chapter One: It's not Over.

One month after the fall of Darknesse...

The Symbol of Balance shone brightly across the Earth. The Darknesse was practically extinct and the Light's physical form was gone as well. The Followers had already begun to rebuild the damaged world after the Darknesse's takeover. All over the globe, in the capital cities, flew a new flag with the symbol of Balance. The flag was always present but in its circles of blue and red, the Society of Light and Society of Darkness symbols replaced the colors. Bill Plunderbones and his fiancé Cherie were down by The Tokyo Bay, salvaging more wreckage of TSOD airships and taking them to a storage facility in the Cortevos ocean. After the new Balance was created, Bill took up the Leadership of Japan with Cherie as the Vice Prime Minister and Jack Pistol as the head of renovation projects.

As Bill was picking up a piece of scrap metal, a familiar sound was heard; An airship fleet. The ships were approaching from the western sky. Bill's first thought was that the Darknesse somehow had returned, but these airships were different; Their sides were painted all black with an unfamiliar blue, star-like symbol displayed on the side. "Maybe these invaders were friendly?" Bill thought. This notion was completely expelled from his mind when the bombs began to fall.

Normally the servants of Light would stay and fight, but since The Light had died, their powers were gone. "Run!" Bill yelled to Jack. "Run to the bomb shelter!" Bill grabbed Cherie's hand and they both began sprinting to a small door underneath the palace. After locking the deadbolts, the trio glided down several flights of stairs into a tiny cement bunker. Despite being underground, the walls shook with every blast, sending debris falling down from the ceiling.

During the next half hour, Bill, Cherie, and Jack sat in the corner, listening to the sound of return cannon fire from above. After determining that it was safe to leave, the trio ascended the stairs, preparing themselves for the state of the city.

Tokyo was in flames. A layer of ash covered all of the debris that was scattered across the city. More somber still was the sheer number of lifeless silhouettes strewn throughout the streets. "What the hell has happened?" asked Jack.

"I don't know...," answered Cherie. "Could this have been a Darknesse attack?"

"No," Bill muttered, pacing. "It can't be. The Darkness is dead; Bobby Moon is dead. And the ensignia on the ship. Nothing adds up." Bill gazed over the horizon for a moment in silence and then lowered his head. "Mr. Pistol, please gather the army and begin searching for survivors. I'm going to find some answers."


Chapter 2: In the Library

Bill quickly walked to the once grand doors of the Japanese palace. The entire east wing of the estate was rubble and whatever remained was covered in a layer of ash and soot. Bill pried open fallen door and entered the dark entrance hall. He skidded around a fallen chandelier and mounted the grand staircase, which was now littered with chunks of building material and dust. At the top of the stairs, Bill entered the exquisite library. Despite a few fallen columns and volumes, the room was mostly intact. Staring up at the vast collection of leather - bound books, Bill wondered where to begin his search for answers.

He scanned the walls until he found the open archway he was looking for. In the center of a small room was a winding spiral staircase. At the top was granite cavern with a mosaic floor. The symbol of the Society of Light, made up of colored clay tiles, was displayed proudly in the center of the floor. Careful to avoid stepping on the insignia, Bill approached a heavy stone door. Carved in the rock there was another Light symbol. Bill tapped the center of the triangle with his index finger. Suddenly, a warm glow flashed from the crack beneath the door. The glow was not frightening, but warm like sunlight. The barrier rose, revealing a smaller library.

This library was special in that it was split in half. The left side was brightly lit by glowing lamps and large bay windows. Small shelves were filled with books as was a cluttered desk. A large tapestry hung from the wall, embroidered with ancient faces and the familiar Light symbol. It was clear that this side was more frequently used than its counterpart.

The adjacent side was mostly hidden in shadows, with no windows. A single burning lantern lit the pristine cherry desk, that would otherwise be shrouded in darkness. A small Darknesse banner hung above the colossal bookcases which were lean compared to the brighter shelves. The balance insignia was made of mosaic tiles in the center of the floor, just as in the cavern.


Chapter 3: Malignant Forces

Three hooded figures stood on a balcony, overseeing a large cavern. Below were hundreds of airships, marked with the blue star symbol, and thousands of shadow-like soldiers. "The plan is unfolding swimmingly, do you not agree my brothers?" said the tallest figure, with two blood red eyes.

"I agree, my lord. We are quickly approaching complete domination of this little world," responded the red and blue eyed villain.

"Mortem shall return at last," the last figure declared.


Back in the Society of Light library...

Bill sat at the Light desk, surrounded by stacks of books. "Perhaps history could tell me what is going on now?" he thought. But so far, he was having no luck. The records in the Light's book collection only went back a few hundred years. Bill glanced up from the leather book, toward the records of Darknesse. Not many servants of Light had dared to delve into those shelves. It was rumored that even reading the text could corrupt One into serving the Darknesse. But, desperate times called for desperate measures.

Bill reached for an old-looking volume on the bottom corner of the last cherry shelf. He blew the dust off of the cover and opened to the first wrinkled page. Sitting on the corner of the Darknesse's desk, Bill began reading. The first page that caught his eye was a ritual to bring someone back from the nether-realm. This ceremony could bring back every servant of Light that had ever died; Law and Rich... "No," Bill decided. This was dark magic, he couldn't use it. The myths were apparently true; The Darknesse's books were as persuasive and cunning as its members. He continued to skim the ancient text until he came to a half ripped page. In the upper left-hand corner appeared to be a faded star symbol. This was it; what Bill had been searching for.

The information was written in an ancient text, which no one was literate in anymore. Luckily, and English translation was scrawled in black ink below. Although half of the page was missing, some information could still be decoded.

Before The Darknesse and The Light, there was an all powerful regime. The Light wishes to hide the past, but the posterity of The Dark shall know all. Our history begins with three brothers, who started a grand organization for peace by world control. The plan was successful for many years and any rebels were destroyed by Shadow Warriors. Eventually, the brothers began arguing and two brothers left the organization, and fought against their older sibling. Together, they barely defeated the regime. Shortly after, differences of opinion caused them to created two new factions; They are known today as The Darknesse and The Light. The original organization gave birth to our mighty society, though they swore revenge on future generations. Many fear to speak their name to this d...

The rest of the words were missing, most likely ripped out in a hurry. "So this this society has returned!" Bill realized aloud. "My ancestors..."

Chapter 4: The Book of Mortem

All of this new information was from a Darknesse perspective. "There must be some record of this history in the Light half of the library," Bill thought. He placed the open book back on the Darknesse desk and began walking toward the bay windows on the Light side. Suddenly, Bill found himself sprawled on the mosaic floor after tripping over a fallen scroll. While trying to regain his composure, Bill was quickly filled with fear; He had fallen on the ancient symbol of Balance. For it was Society of Light superstition that anyone who disturbed even the symbol of balance would pay a grave price.

Bill quickly scrambled to his feet, but it was too late. He could not escape the ancient circle, due to an invisible wall surrounding him. The Light side of the ying and yang began to emit a blinding glow, with the Darknesse side producing Dark energy. Before Bill could begin thinking up a plan, the floor disappeared beneath his feet. He fell into darkness for a moment until he hit the cold marble floor of the secret shrine. The room was mysteriously lit by two candles, which were positioned on each side of an altar. The malignant star symbol was etched on every stone wall. Perfectly in the center of the ancient altar was a large, decaying book with a golden cover. The only visible markings were five letters; M O R T E M.

Bill gingerly approached the enormous text and opened to the first wrinkled page. He began to read the faded words:

Greetings Dear Reader,

My name is Limyé, and I have recently founded the Society of Light. If you have found this shrine, I am most likely dead. However, for your efforts, you deserve to know my story. Until very recently, I was a general in the all powerful Order of Mortem, under my oldest brother Gomel. At first, The Order was a dream; My lust for power and domination drove me to do terrible things. But eventually, my other brother Astucio and I saw the terrible acts we were committing, and found the will to leave. We rose up against Gomel and finally defeated him and the rest of The Order five years later. However, Astucio and I found that we could not agree about how to fix the world, and we parted ways; Myself to The Light and he to The Darknesse. I shall recall my history in detail throughout this record book, which I shall call The Book of Mortem.

Bill read the curving script by candlelight for he didn't know how many hours. The countless bits of information swirled in his head. This secret shrine could be his, and the world's, salvation! However, Bill's hope was almost shattered when reading the final page:

Before he was destroyed in the explosion, Gomel swore that The Order of Mortem would return and regain its domination. If such a terrible situation were to occur, I have one piece of advice; Do not try to fight. Take everything that matters to you and find a remote location to hide and survive in. Mortem was barely defeated before, and many lives were lost. The Order will no doubt return stronger than anyone now could ever imagine. You will be hunted and annihilated within a few weeks. Heed my warning, my dear reader, and save yourself.

These final words sent chills down Bill's spine. He knew that he must discuss his findings with the rest of the Society of Light. He quickly mounted a rusty iron ladder and began climbing back up into the palace. Once he arrived, he rushed to find Jack Pistol and Cherie.

Chapter 5: The 8th Light Conference

Bill emerged into the main library to the sound of someone shouting his name. When he appeared, Cherie embraced him in a huge bear hug. Then she proceeded to punch him in the shoulder. "Where the hell have you been?!" she yelled.

"It was crazy! There was this secret library under the Library of Balance! I have loads of new information!" Bill responded.

"That's great, but you've been missing for three days! There's been another attack, on Padres Del Fuego," Cherie announced solemnly.

"No... That's impossible. There's no way anyone could plan an attack that fast."

"The town got the brunt of it. There are only about a hundred survivors. They were brought here, and they're staying in the great hall for safety." Before Bill could react, Jack Pistol entered the room.

"Great, you've found Bill! The meeting starts in a few minutes."

"What meeting?" Bill inquired.

"Leaders from all over the world are coming to discuss this new threat and decide what to do," explained Jack.

"Excellent."

The trio walked together to the conference room where the other leaders were waiting. Before they even entered the room, they could hear the yelling. Men and women in light blue Society of Light robes were angrily yelling at each other across the large banquet table. Everyone was part of the fight, except for an old British man who was fast asleep in the corner of the room. "Everyone calm down, please! And let the 8th Light Conference begin!" Bill shouted. The room quickly hushed at the arrival of their leader. "I have found new information about our new enemy. Their name is Mortem, and they are a secret, ancient order." Bill then proceeded to explain the history of The Order of Mortem.

"That is impossible!" one old woman shouted. "If this 'Order' really existed, we would have heard of it before! It is probably just the Darknesse, trying to fool us with these tricks!" A few members nodded in agreement, but the majority still seemed unsure.

As if on cue, every candle in the large room was extinguished. The air became eerily cold causing everyone to feel uneasy. "Keep calm, everyone," Bill said. "I'm sure it's nothing..." Without warning, a translucent figure appeared in the middle of the banquet table.

"Greetings," said a hooded figure. His glowing red eyes bore into the cowering crowd. The figure then transformed from just a projection to a physical being. Several people gasped at this blatant expression of power. "As you may have figured out, my name is Gomel. So these are the 'mighty' followers of Limyé? It's pathetic really. Though, I must thank you all for eliminating the Society of Darknesse. Now I don't have to do it myself!" Cackling, and with the wave of a hand, Gomel created a wall of blue fire surrounding the perimeter of the room. Every high-ranking Light member was now trapped.

Bill, Cherie, and Jack drew their weapons. Although they were no longer enchanted, they could still pack a punch. "You're going to regret the attacks on our people, our innocent people!" Bill growled. Then, Gomel turned his gaze on Bill, tilting his head.

"Your people are anything but innocent, PATHETIC MORTAL!"

Every servant of Light lunged at Gomel at once, but he was too powerful. Each person was thrown back, as of pushed by an invisible arm. "Foolish, foolish," Gomel taunted. Anyone who continues to resist was thrown against the walls by the invisible enemy. They laid unconscious or dead, no one was sure which. "Surrender before it becomes too late." With those words left echoing across the palace, Gomel was gone.

Chapter 6: Return of the Spirit

Every physical object in the room was covered in lingering blue flames. Numerous bodies were strewn throughout the room, including the woman who had doubted the existence of Mortem. One man declared, "They're too powerful. We need to protect our own countries! Save your own families, for this is anarchy!"

Before Bill could protest, the servants of Light began running in a stampede out of the room. Ever since the Spirit of Light had died, the members could no longer teleport. Staring at the empty room for a moment, Bill was at a loss for words. Then, he quickly began moving back toward the library. Cherie and Jack began shouting and running after him.

When they reached the Library of Balance, they first noticed the cracked symbol on the title floor. "It's falling apart, everything is. We can't defeat Mortem, not without The Light. We have to bring the Spirit back from the dead."

"Bill, if we could, wouldn't we have done it already?" asked Jack.

"No," Bill muttered. "Because we need to use Darknesse to do it."

"Hun, I thought you'd never ask," a sly voice crooned.

The trio of Light whipped around to see Stardust sitting on top of a large Darknesse bookcase, thumbing through a large text. It was the very book that Bill had looked at, apparently days ago. Dusty looked disheveled. Her hair was dirty and knotted, and her body was covered in fresh scrapes and bruises. Though, her Darknesse amulet was still displayed proudly around her neck.

"And why would you try to help us?" Bill inquired, his hand gripping the hilt of his sword.

Dusty looked up, her green eyes meeting his gaze. "Because those bastards tried to take me out too."

"And you could bring back The Spirit of Light?" asked Jack.

"Yes, and as many little Light cronies as you would like, as long as Gomel gets his ass kicked in."

"Done," Bill decided without hesitation. "What do you need?"

Dusty listed off numerous ingredients for the ritual. "And I need a body of water that has been touched by Darknesse; Pantano River on Cuba should do."

"We'd better get going then!" Cherie announced. The group traveled to Cuba quickly by Society of Light airship. When they finally arrived, Stardust set up a small black cauldron on a dock and began mixing various powders and liquids.

After several minutes she declared, "It's ready."

"Now what?" asked Bill.

"Now the Sacred Words," she explained, kneeling on the rober bank and opening the tattered book. Pouring the cauldron's contents into the river, she began to speak in an ancient tongue. "Erbyn y pŵer Darknesse, orchmynnwyf i ti eu codi. Fe'ch gwysir o'r isfyd i ddarparu gwasanaethau i dy feistr. Rise, gweision a gollwyd o olau. Rise ysbryd o olau!" The last word echoed through the trees as the dark river water began to bubble and glow.

Suddenly, Richard Goldvane and Lawrence Daggerpaine emerged from the depths. "Rich! Law!" Cherie, Bill, and Jack yelled. Though they were coughing up river water, Rich and Law looked just as plain as they had two months ago.

Then, a beam of Light shot out of the churning water, striking Bill square between the eyes. He was knocked off his feet, looking stunned. Before anyone could react, Bill stood back up, with a pure energy radiating from his skin. He shot a beam of Light from his hand, which lit the entire dark sky. Everyone except Stardust began to cheer.

Caught up in their joy, no one noticed that Dusty had continued chanting, until it was too late. "Ac yn olaf, yn codi chwiorydd ac ysbryd nerthol o Darknesse!" she cackled. The water began to react again, but this time two young women appeared. The shorter of the two trudged out of the water and knelt beside Dusty.

"You have done well, my sister," declared the blonde woman, who was surrounded by a Dark aura. She smirked at Dusty and Kitty, who had identical grins. The servants of Light stopped their celebrating and gaped in horror. The blonde woman looked up from beneath her charcoal black ostrich hat to reveal the face of Bobby Moon. "Did ya miss me?"

Chapter 7: Okinawa Prison

"Dusty, what have you done?!" Jack shouted.

"Foolish Jackie! You didn't really expect me to bring back your Light without also resurrecting my sisters of Darknesse," Dusty replied, standing up.

The five servants of Light drew their various weapons, preparing to attack. Moon did not appear to be phased. "So my sister tells me that you've had a Mortem problem. Now I'd be willing to pledge some forces to destroy this mutual enemy; Gomel will not be defeated easily," she said smoothly.

"How do you know all this?" Bill demanded.

"The Darknesse always has its ways, no matter how questionable those methods may be. Now, how about we have a civilized discussion about this issue, shall we?"

As Bob approached, Bill raised his blade higher. "It's not going to happen, Bob. The Darknesse has always been evil; There's no reason for us to trust you," Bill said stubbornly.

"Evil is such a strong word. I prefer to think of it as cunningly bending the rules for personal advantage," Bob said with a smirk.

"Any way you slice it, you're going to prison," Rich said, matter-of-factually. Stardust and Kitty's palms filled with Dark energy to defend their Supreme Overlord, but Moon waved them off.

"It's not worth it," she explained while being handcuffed. "I'll escape soon enough to meet you in The Oasis."

Moon had a black bag thrown over her head and she was escorted onto the Light airship. She sat in darkness for hours, only sensing the guards sitting next to her. Then, the ship finally landed.

When her sight was finally returned, Bob was chained to the wall of a decaying dungeon-like room, and Bill Plunderbones was sitting in a chair in front of her. "So, you're back again?" He questioned.

"Clearly," she answered suavely. "Either that or this is all just a bad dream."

Bill stares at her with a mixture of hatred and curiosity. "I assume you have returned to join Mortem and take over the world again, considering that's all you ever do."

"The motives for my actions are a matter of perspective and something you don't understand." Bill started to argue but Bob cut him off. "I'm going to tell you what will happen now. I'm going to get up and walk out of here, and you're going to let me."

"Impossible," Bill said, rolling his eyes. "There is no way you can escape this high security facility, or remove your restraints for that matter!"

"On the contrary, Billiam. I picked the locks on these chains ten minutes ago." She threw the cuffs to the ground and began walking toward the door.

"You can't just expect to walk out of here! You are on an island surrounded by guards!" Bill yelled.

"Oh I can and I will. We'll meet again, and then you'll see things from my perspective. You need the Darknesse more than you know." Moon strolled out the door and bounded down many flights of stairs. None of the Light members gave her a second look, like she was invisible. She emerged from the tall prison building into the brisk island night. The full moon lit her way onto the beach where she disappeared in a puff of smoke.

Chapter 8: The Dark Oasis

When Bobby Moon reappeared, she was in the jungle of Isla Perdida. She quickly scanned her surroundings, but found no signs of any human life. She proceeded to the trunk of a large maple tree. She pulled a small dagger from her belt and sliced the tip of her middle finger. Rubbing the small bead of blood on a large knot on the tree, Moon recited words from the ancient language; "Cantiatau cofnodi meistr tywyllwch..." A panel of the trunk slid away, revealing a small stone staircase. She hopped down each step into the world's most beautiful garden paradise: The Dark Oasis.

A tiny, bubbling creak flowed through the Oasis, curving around small pine trees, flowers, and ferns of every variety. Stone paths and bridges guided a patron's way around the garden cavern. Everything was shrouded in shadow, only being lit by tall oil lamps. Statues of Darknesse officials old and new were nestled among the plants throughout the area. Despite the other stunning features, the most unique element of the Oasis was the paintings on the stone walls above and surrounding the garden. Looking up, the markings resembled the night sky, while one was surrounded by Darknesse symbols on the walls.

Oasis
Oasis2

Bobby Moon proceeded to a medium-sized structure in the rear of the Oasis. It appeared to be a miniaturized version of a castle, made completely of obsidian rock, aside from the windows. She strode onto a wooden bridge and over the flowing creek, entering the castle.

The foyer was an elegant room with signs of the Darknesse and knowledge everywhere. Moon walked up a spiral staircase into a long carpeted hallway, which was lined with doors. One heavy black door at the end of the hall stood out in particular. It was covered with intricate, ancient looking carvings. Bobby pushed it open to reveal an office room, filled with books and Darknesse symbols: The Dwelling of the Host. Sitting on the desk were Dusty and Kitty, patiently waiting for Moon's return.

"I am back, my sisters," Bobby announced, as she took at seat in a throne-like chair in the center of the room.

"What is the plan now? How do we destroy Mortem?" Dusty asked.

"We must be patient, Dusty. The Light does not view our assistance as necessary, but on time they will. They must fall before they can choose to rise with Darknesse," Moon replied.

Chapter 9: A New Offensive

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