Have you ever thought things couldn't get any worse and that you were simply overreacting? That all you had to do was look at the bigger picture and realize that there was nothing to worry about the whole time? Well, that's what I tried to do after my pack swarmed the lone knight huntsman. I looked at the bigger picture.
And immediately realized I how utterly and hopelessly screwed I was.
An explosion of lightning erupted. The sound of the rain became mute compared to the thunderous roar that the knight's spear had created. I felt a hollow chill run through my spine as a wave of heat rushed past me. The attacking beowolves had been completely eviscerated to the point where not even their ashes remained. Brilliant golden sparks danced around the huntsman, their spear raised towards the crying sky with their feet planted in an even larger crater.
The air was heavy and the humidity pressing down upon me was suffocating. The scent of rain was dark and heady.
Fucking bullshit weapon. I call hacks! I refuse to believe that a physical embodiment of a lightning bolt could exist in Remnant. I-It had to be their semblance. It must have been! Which means that he can't spam that same AOE attack repeatedly without physical consequence.
His attack had made quite a dent in my pack's population, but he was still greatly outnumbered. The beowolves were caught in a daze at the knight's semblance, but an echoing howl from one of its members sent them back into their frenzy. The huntsman readied himself into a fighting stance. He spaced his feet apart and spun his spear until it was angled between both gauntlets. Stop staring at me when you're doing that!
As the second wave of grimm closed in on the knight, I was half-expecting him to unleash his semblance once more. Instead, he cleaved away at his enemies. He swung his spear, sparks flying through the rain as the beowolves were cut into two. He utilised his momentum created from his weapon with the utmost proficiency. He shuffled his position, twirling the spear to strike down a group of pouncing beowolves from his side, only to repeat the same fluid motions from the beowolves behind him. The huntsman didn't seem to be hindered wearing a full suit of armor. He sidestepped a feral swing and countered with his own decapitating blow.
His movements were precise and calculated, his attacks, fierce and destructive.
I felt uneasy, a sense of dread flooded my chest. All I could do was stand there, trembling, as the grimm were being culled. I know the animated series designed huntsmen and huntresses to be the badass slayers of grimm, but I didn't think they would be this powerful. Even in battle, I still couldn't sense any emotion coming from the knight. There was no insane twisted joy of killing my pack nor was there any fear of defeat. He was emotionless, a machine designed to fulfil his one purpose.
The rest of my pack rushed in. A flood of black and white blinded my view of the knight's relentless assault. It wasn't hard to notice that the huntsman wasn't having any difficulties dealing with the increase in fodder. My pack started dying much faster actually. My territory had become a bizarre portrait with strokes of scattering lightning and ascending ashes from above. Body parts and even the bodies themselves of my pack members were flung in the air during the ongoing chaos. The still image had burned into my memory.
Lightning crackled once more.
Snarls, howls, roars. These are the sounds that I hear from all around me.
The destruction was slowly making its way towards me. The bastard was willing to cut down all those monsters just to reach me!
I need to run.
The doubt in my mind has become increasingly clear. The beowolves stood no chance. My pack was going to die, slaughtered to the non-existent void by the huntsman. With my current form, I can clear distances in mere minutes. I'll transform back into my pup form and lay low for awhile-
The torso of an extra crispy beowolf lands next to me. Its Essence begins to make its way towards me.
I know what will happen next and I can't help but laugh at the ensuing irony. Even if the amount absorbed was minuscule, I felt it. God, that damn state of ecstasy! Calm down. Fuck, calm down! M-My claws were twitching, yearning to slash and rip apart. Rip apart who or what, exactly? They…my hands didn't care; anything would have worked! My heart, full of fear and sudden confidence, is beating faster. My breathing comes out as short and frantic through my bared fangs, rainwater mixed with saliva practically running down my plated jaw.
The knight's thunder roared once more across the territory.
I don't need this.
The jumbled cacophony of my pack fighting desperately against the huntsman had become an awe-inspiring musical. The lyrics, simultaneously mute and loud, were the same and kept pounding at my soul, "Rise up and fight. Rise up and fight. Rise up and fight…!"
I will die if I give in, dammit! But despite my sound logic, my body refused to listen. I was trapped in an internal conflict with myself. An instinctual battle of 'Fight or Flight'. And right now, Fight was winning.
I need to suppress it. This…This burning desire, this bottomless craving, this insatiable blood-thirst! "Arrrrggghhhhhh…."
Claim what is yours.
Oh, hell no!
I don't need encouragement right now! Shut up-
"AAARRRRRGGGGGHHHHHHHHH" I howled in shock.
Son of a bitch!
A-A beam of golden light shot through me.
It instantly tore through the crowds of beowolves and a tidal wave of indescribable heat sears through the left side of my body. The rain's effort to soothe the heat had no effect. My mind concedes to the anguishing torment, unable to register an explanation of my body's condition. Without meaning to, my body's composure crumbles to its knees all while the pain burns and radiates.
I can't feel my left arm. I lean my neck to inspect the damage-
Hah… hah…. It's gone.
My left arm was gone, completely vaporized, leaving behind nothing but a grossly steaming shoulder stump. My remaining hand trembles as I try to cover the wound with it – to maybe try and ease the burning. But I freeze mid-way. The smell of burnt flesh was nauseating. If I could vomit, I would, but I don't; I can't.
I glance up and my blood freezes. For a single second, everything comes to a chilling halt in time. The huntsman stood a measurable distance from me now, his cape frozen in mid-air from the equal force of his lightning attack. His spear was thrusted outward with a glaring shine and silver streams of smoke. The huntsman had parted a sea of monsters to create a straight path to pierce my heart.
Time resumes. Rain continues to fall, melted bodies are dropping and disappearing.
He readies his spear and charges straight at me. My pack collapses his path, but it's pointless. At best, they can stall for a minute or two until the inevitable. I…I've accepted my fate now. I can't see any way to overcome him. I could run, but what good would stalling do? I lost an arm to a single attack for fuck sakes! I stared bitterly as my pack members were killed without effort.
More Essence is channelled into me. The pain becomes numb suddenly. My desires are stronger than ever before now. Emotions swirl around me, feelings I'm all too aware of. Regret, fear, denial, but there was one growing emotion that was the most distinguishable. It's screaming out at me, deafening every corner of my defeated mind. I have a glimpse of my memories in this world. There wasn't much to recall, after all, I had only reincarnated for a few months. How unfair to have it end here…
The huntsman breaks through the blockade of beowolves. He dashes at me, the clanging of his armor growing louder by the second. He pulls his spear back in preparation for the killing blow.
For you are…
He's sent flying across the territory after I hurled my fist straight into his chest-plate. An unpleasant screeching sound was made when he stabbed his spear into the ground, his momentum slowing down as the knight comes to a skidding stop. His stare instils an unknown fear into me but I don't care anymore.
I'm fucking livid right now.
I realize now that all I needed was a little push. Something to put me out my state of panic and truly come to understand the situation I was in. Yes, I understand clearly now.
I snarled, its ferocity void of any hint of humanity.
You think you can just come here and wreck my territory, slaughter most of my farm – everything I've built up! – and then expect to take my life because I'm the leader? Sorry, but I'm not going to give you the satisfaction. You're going to have to try a little harder than that!
Hmm, strange…I don't feel any pain. Has the sheer adrenaline nullified my sense of pain? Wait, my arm. Holy shit it's regenerating, my left arm is regenerating! All the Essence of the fallen grimm, it's being used to repair my form! A fiery shape had taken form, expanding and restructuring itself in a strange mixture of flames and shadows. My left arm had completely reformed as if it had never been destroyed in the first place. I curled my new claw in and out, elation running through my veins with every motion. A maddening grin was forming between my fangs.
And just to make sure morale was at its peak, I leaned back and released my bellowing command howl.
That seemed to rile everyone up if the joining of wolf howls was any indication. The huntsman, unfazed and emotionless as ever, simply kicked the spear out of the ground and spun it back into ready position. As the final remnants of my pack charge forward, I adopted a runner's starting position with my claws and feet planted into the soil. I licked my teeth in anticipation for the perfect moment where I would be obstructed from his field of view.
I pumped my legs, instantly gaining speed from that single push. I darted past the blurred beowolves, both alive and dead, my hands and feet flying over mud and stone. Cold moist air bit into my lungs. My mind was racing faster than my accelerating body, thinking of all the possible ways I could strike. In mere seconds, I had closed the between the distracted huntsman. I quite literally tore straight through a beowolf into two to catch the knight off guard.
He was a second too late to readjust his spear's position from his previous kill, we both knew that and I took advantage of it. I swung my claw upwards with the strength that would easily shred his armor. But the armor doesn't break. I know I hit him, the force of my attack sent him up. If anything, it felt like I scratched a brick wall with a kitchen knife!
I see – so this is what damaging aura feels like.
He bends his back and plants his spear down into an unfortunate beowolf to flip himself back onto his feet. He takes down two more beowolves from the right with a quick sweep. But with the way his helmet is leaning in my direction, I can tell he's more cautious of my presence this time. Finding another opening was going to be hard.
Good thing I'm creative.
I sunk my claws into the flesh of a beowolf beside me and I flung it at him. He takes a step back and disposes the flying grimm. I take this chance to close in on him and unleash a flurry of swift attacks. He pivots to the right to avoid the first strike, then twirled his spear block the second. The huntsman had an answer to all my attacks. It didn't matter how fast or powerful I swung, he would either sidestep my devastating blows or intercept it with that damn spear.
Even with the help of my pack members, he was still able to hold his own and even managed to land decisive counter strikes to deal with them. Jesus Christ, it was like trying to fight against a spinning helicopter blade!
"GGGGGGRRRRR…." It frustrated me to no end. My chest tightened with anger. Fucking hell, just stand still and take the hit already!
I hissed in pain when I brought an arm up to protect myself from his side-long swipe. A loud snap was heard when the metal shaft made impact followed by a searing sensation of being burned. It didn't make sense! The blade of the spear didn't even touch me; I was well within close range for a spear to be useless. So why…?
The knight ended our exchange when he delivered a mighty kick to my stomach. Some of my ribs shattered, I'm sure of it. I coughed out all the air in my lungs as I tumbled a distance away. I shrug off the pain, feeling the soothing numbing from the Essence around me. I regained my bearings and paused. I couldn't help but let out quick laugh about my ability. I stared at the graveyard in front of me, the body count increasing by the second. So many decaying corpses scattered about, so much fluttering Essence to consume. It's ironic, really.
Everything you've done to kill me, the countless beowolves you've slain, it will be the sole reason I will triumph over you.
So, go on huntsman! Do your job! Embrace your hunt!
Strike without mercy! Kill them! Kill them all for me! Let me reap all the benefits!
We trade a brief stare at each other; my crimson with his empty void. He pulls the spear back. It charges with energy. A bright light is beginning to be emitted and azure sparks gather around him. He thrusts the spear forward, releasing the crying lightning beam straight through my stomach. The pain is instantaneous as if my entire body was set aflame. Everything grows numb and I lose my sense of balance. I dig my feet to remain upright while my upper body slumps forward without intention. My arms hang limp, motionless by my sides. I see a perfect hole of where my stomach area used to be in my peripheral vision.
"Hah…hah…hah…" But despite sustaining such a heavy injury, my grin stubbornly remains.
A trail of Essence joins together and fill the hole.
But like I said, you're going to have to try a little harder than that. The huntsman lowers his spear slightly and looks around the battlefield. So, you understand now? That so long as we fight here, the place of my fallen pack members, with their ashes endlessly dispersing – I will not die. I can't die.
I am invincible here.
Thunder boomed in the distance. The rainfall doesn't let up.
He pulls his spear back once more, energy starting to build up and crackle in the weapon. He leans forward, stretching one leg back and his free hand forward on the ground. His cape flutters in the wind. Steam slowly pours out of the knight's helmet and I can't help but feel a tiny smidge of doubt in the back of my mind. I force it down without hesitation. I get on all fours.
So, you intend to put everything you have into one final charge, huh? Only poetic I do the same. Just don't blame me for cheating.
We unleash everything we have into our limbs. The charge is instant. The ground beneath us is shattered, clouds of dust and wild debris are kicked up behind us as we approach each other. The remaining beowolves are blown away. The timing of my finishing blow had to be perfect.
Face to face, the knight lunges his energized spear at me.
Time slows down in that instance. The individual raindrops come to a standstill.
The spear is 30 centimetres away from me now. It's glowing white from the overflowing energy it's emitting. The huntsman has angled his weapon to obliterate my head. Perfect.
Golden sparks are beginning to form at the tip. It's about to fire!
…The time is now!
I command this body to revert to its original state!
Time resumes at its normal pace.
The spear unleashes a powerful beam of lightning at the same moment that my body melts into black smoke. The heat emitted from the beam is immense, even in my pup form. Shockwaves are sent through my left ear. I take two steps closer until I'm standing in front of his feet, and not a second later the lighting beam dissipates. No time to waste!
I order this body of mine to transform into my Alpha form!
It's over, I win!
My massive fist makes direct contact with the lower region of the huntsman's helmet. The sheer force is enough to disrupt the raindrops, causing them to scatter mid-air. The huntsman is sent sky-rocketing up through the sky until he's nothing more than a white speck. There was a small *puff* effect when his body broke through a rain cloud. ~Damn~ I don't even my own strength when I'm determined.
But still… I did it.
I actually did it!
"HA HA HA HA HA!" I laughed and howled at my victory. My pack, whatever was left of it anyways, joined in on my outcome. I outstretched both arms towards the dark sky and proceeded to give the flying huntsman the bird with both hands. Hah! Fuck you and bullshit spear-
Wait… what's that rattling sound?
I look down and realize that the sound was coming from the huntsman's spear. He must have dropped it after I sent him into the stratosphere. Hold up, it's vibrating. Why is it vibrating? Spears aren't supposed to vibrate!
The spear begins to slowly levitate to my surprise and then it suddenly shoots itself into the sky, straight into the unknown beyond the rain clouds.
W-What's going on?
An eerie stillness falls over what's left of my territory. And in the silence, came a deep crackle of low thunder, rolling across the entire forest to the raindrops itself. The crackling doesn't stop. It continues, increasing in volume and anger with each passing second. For a moment, everything stops. Even the wind becomes mute. The dark clouds above emitted a golden glow that was slowly building up in intensity and brightness.
I already won!
I already won, god damn it! Don't do this to me!
An enormous streak of burning gold splits the sky. Its power alone causes the clouds above me to forcibly disperse and open in a massive circle revealing the eye of the furious storm. A blinding light washes over my territory, but it wasn't the welcoming sunlight. No, it was much, much worse.
I could feel it.
The euphoria of my supposed victory and total self-confidence crumbling into nothing at the mere sight.
The only thing that remains is a mountain of despair.
Above the parted shadowy clouds was a giant lightning bolt aimed directly at me. I-It…it was his spear. I chuckle dryly at the realization. This was the true form of his weapon, his true capabilities as a hunter. It's funny in a twisted sense of perspective. I truly never stood a chance in the first place!
No no no no no no no no NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO….!
That's not fair!
The lightning bolt is increasing in size – son of a bitch! – he's already thrown it!
The light and crackling have become worse. Shit!
I – I need to escape. I- c-can make it if I run now! Y-yeah… I-I-I….
I broke into a mad desperate dash into the forest – hell, anywhere but here!
But I'm too late.
I was engulfed in a white blanket of agony.
"…And then Professor Pigeon gave me a B+! Camilla, can you believe it? I got a B+!" Summer cheered.
"T-That's great, Summer. I'm sure your sister is going to be proud of you when you tell her that." Camilla responded, taking a petite sip from her cup.
The Vice-Captain and Hero had spent their time in the militia hall casually drinking tea and engaging in conversation from an assortment of topics. Most of which involved her great feats of heroism. Though, Camilla had been mostly attentive to her brilliant tales and would only provide bits of feedback at the end. Her patience and listening skills were out of this world. Summer could see why big sis' chose Camilla to be her right-hand woman!
Camilla had suggested that Summer could entrust the letter to her until big sis' got back. She politely declined, of course. It was sweet of her, really it was, but it was still raining outside. Ah, and she really wanted to confront the evil Villain too! Besides, this was her quest. Summer had to be the one to hand-deliver this super important letter.
…Plus, she had a legitimate reason to see her older sister while she was working. Having the Hero be escorted out of the hall for just wanting to say, "hi big sis'!" was so humiliating!
"Summer, are you alright? Your teacup is shaking."
"Huh? O-oh, sorry about that! I was lost in my thoughts." She laughed it off. "I just wish she'd hurry up with her walk and come back already."
Summer didn't care if she was being impatient. They were almost running out of tea and she still hasn't shown up!
Camilla scratched the back of her head with a nervous chuckle. "Haha…well you know the Captain. She probably got caught up with-
Just then the gates were pushed open with a still creak. She held her breath with wide eyes when the individual stepped inside. The atmosphere grew silent. All activity and chatter in the hall stopped, their focus was directed at the silver knight walking towards Summer. The snow-white cloth against their back swished left and right with every clanging step. In Argentum's militia, it symbolized the highest authority with the right to command. The Captain's cape.
"C-Captain Rose!" a random warrior broke the silence with a sudden salute of respect.
Soon the entire hall joined in, both villagers and warriors alike. The chilling air had ceased to exist and was replaced with the natural homely feeling from before; albeit it was a bit rowdier. A crowd had formed around the Captain, blocking her destination. Summer couldn't help but pout at the scene.
"C-Captain Rose, welcome back!" a warrior shouted.
"Captain Rose, your armor is dripping wet! Here, let me dry that for you!" Another villager yelled.
"How dare you disrespect the Captain with that filthy rag!" Loud protest from the crowd was heard. "Use my shirt instead!"
"No, use mine!"
"Dah' fak' did you say?!"
Camilla let out a long, audible sigh. Summer agreed whole-heartedly.
This was going to take awhile.
The attention was expected, not just because of her rank. The people of Argentum truly had the highest respect for her older sister. After all, she was the strongest warrior in the entire village! They say that big sis' was as fast as lightning and her attacks were as loud as thunder. She took her responsibility for the safety of the village with high regard, making sure that the structure of the militia was well maintained and organized. Everyone trusted her orders, for, without a doubt, they believed her actions were for the best of this village and everyone in it.
To the people of Argentum, she was known as Captain Rose.
"The Spear of Justice."
Summer watched as big sis' was settling the crowd down. She couldn't hear what she was saying due to the chatter of the crowd. She leaned both elbows on the table while idly tapping her boot on the floorboards. Camilla placed a hand on her shoulder and gave the Hero a somber smile.
Summer must have gotten lost in one of her many heroic daydreams since before she knew it, the metal clanging of her footsteps had become awfully louder. She whirled her head and a bright smile broke on her face.
"C-Captain R-Ros- ow!" Camilla bit her tongue and stumbled a bit to rise from her seat. Her cheeks had a cherry shade.
"Vice-Captain…" She acknowledged her, the voice was hollow and metallic from the helmet. She inspected the table. "I see you've taken my suggestion on getting to know our comrades better. Serving tea is quite an excellent idea."
"…Although your execution could use some work. To be frank, your location is terrible."
"O-oh…I-I see." She cast a downwards expression.
Big sis' patted Camilla over her shoulder guard. "Don't feel bad. You tried to improve yourself, so that's good enough for today. Besides, your plan didn't end up in a complete failure."
"Y-Your too k-kind, Captain…"
She placed her spear, Gungnir, against the side of the bench and took a seat beside Summer."Hello little sister, what brings you here today?"
"Big sis'!" She squealed with delight resembling a puppy yearning for attention. She quickly composed herself and spoke with a serious, heroic, tone. "I'm on a super important quest today. Professor Pigeon told me to give this to you."
She slid the brown envelope over.
"I see." She reached for her helmet. "Well, let me just take this off first."
"Hmmm," Big sis' hummed through the helmet.
"…You have got to be kidding me right now." She exhaled, though it sounded like a boiling kettle. Her hands were still locked over her helmet.
"I-Is something w-wrong, Captain?" Camilla inquired.
"….." The Captain placed her hands together on the table and stared at in silence. "…Camilla?"
"Y-yes!" Her posture stiffened.
"I-It's stuck. My helmet is stuck again." Her voice was suddenly quiet.
"Oh. Don't w-worry, I'll get it fixed." Camilla got up from her seat and pulled an arrow from her quiver leaning beside her bow. She approached the statue knight and inspected the Captain's helmet. "No wonder you can't take it off, the bolt's been forcibly tightened. Did you hit your helmet with something hard recently, Captain Rose?"
The grip between her hands tightened, they both could hear steel rattling.
"…That damn alpha." Was her only response. Camilla raised a brow at Summer, but all she could do was shrug.
"O-Okay. Let me loosen it for you." Camilla fidgeted the tip of the arrow against the helmet's bolt. What an odd alternative for a screwdriver. "T-That should do it."
Big sis' reached for her helmet once more and just like Camilla said, the helmet finally came off.
"Ahh…" Big sis' took in a large gulp of air. Her blonde hair was kept in a neat ponytail which bounced to the side as she flicked her head. Her posture was strict and held high. Beads of sweat trailed down her face, an obvious sign of intense physical activity.
The men of the militia claimed that her older sister was an untouchable beauty on the battlefield. She had no idea what they were talking about. Wasn't that just another way of calling her pretty? The adults claimed that once she got older, everything would make much more sense for her. Pft¸ what's there to understand?
"Thank you, Camilla." Her voice was clear now, no longer trapped in a metal tunnel. She opened the envelope and read its contents.
"N-Not a problem! Um…w-would you like some tea?" Camilla asked. She nodded in response. Camilla began preparing her cup. "So how was your walk, Captain?"
"Hm?" Her glaring silver eyes drifted away from the brown letter and on to her Vice-Captain. "It was fine, I guess. I found a huge nest of beowolves."
Camilla coughed. "W-What?! You found w-what?! Should I go get the warriors prepared?"
Big sis' blinked. "Ah, no need for that Camilla. I've already taken care of it."
"Wait, what do you mean by 'taken care of it'?" Summer asked, leaning against her sister for answers. "Did you defeat them all?!"
"Indeed, I did, little sister." The corner of her mouth curved upwards. "I ended up destroying part of the forest in doing so, unfortunately."
"That's so cool!" she threw her arms in air from the hype.
"Hah hah, it's nothing. I'm just doing my job, that's all there is to it." She took a sip of her tea, closing her eyes and taking in the calming element. "Though I must admit it was quite strange."
"What is, sis?"
The sound of rain drumming against the windows finally stopped. Villagers and a few warriors began to exit the building.
"Well for starters there were twice the amount of beowolves compared to the average pack size. Quite the large gathering. And then there was the alpha beowolf that led the pack. It was nothing I had ever faced before. And I've faced many monstrosities; this beowolf was a first."
Erk! Summer felt a quick jolt run through her body. Did her sister encounter the Villain? "Um, what m-made this beowolf so special, exactly? Were they able to transform at will?"
Her sister placed a hand on Summer's head and ruffled her hair. The sensation of the gauntlet's metal was cold, yet it somehow brought a warm feeling in her chest. "You have quite the imagination, Summer. No, what made it such an odd foe was its regenerative abilities."
Summer's shoulders relaxed. Oh, so it was probably just a different special beowolf. The only thing Summer was aware of was the Villain's transformation capabilities.
A-After all, only she was allowed to defeat them!
Camilla gasped. "Regenerative abilities, Captain? As in, it could heal its injuries?"
She nodded through her tea. "Correct, Camilla. I saw it regrow an entire arm with my own eyes. It also possessed an incredible reaction time. It managed to dodge Gungnir's lightning blast at close quarters. But I suppose it's expected given its status. In the end, I had to use my semblance to ensure there was nothing for the alpha to regenerate from."
The Vice-Captain clapped at her tale. "As expected from Argentum's Spear of Justice!"
Captain Rose gently placed her teacup down. "…I'll say it before and I'll say it again, I don't really like that title as funny as it sounds. I'm just an ordinary warrior who happens to do their job well." She sighed. "The things I do to boost morale…"
She turned to Summer with a grin. "But you don't see me that way, do you, little sister?"
The world may see this woman in armor and spear in hand as some unstoppable protector.
But to Summer Rose, the woman sitting beside her was just her big sister.
The coolest big sister ever.
"By the way," July spoke aloud. "Do you know where the sugar is? I can't seem to find it on the table."
Hearing this, Summer choked on her tea.
I didn't think it was physically possible, truly I didn't.
I became the literal embodiment of the phrase, "Feeling like absolute shit."
I am not overexaggerating.
M-My legs – my entire fucking lower torso was gone. Lost in that damn explosion. Even my tail was gone. Hah Hah. Isn't it ironic? I'm upset that I lost my grimm tail!
By all accounts, I should be dead.
Blotches of my fur and flesh had been burned away, charred and numb. Most of my bone plating was shattered; hell, even a large chunk of my skull was missing. I've been reduced to desperately crawling with my arms. I don't know how long I've been doing this or why I haven't bothered to stop and wait for the sweet release of death. Guess I must be extremely desperate to stay alive.
The only good thing I could possibly think of, aside from surviving, of course, was that the extreme heat produced from the explosion had cauterized all my wounds. That and provide third degree burns all over my broken body.
My breathing is slow and unsteady. My chest burns every time I take a breath. It was a suffocating feeling. I hated dragging my body against the thick terrain. Despite the branching trees, I could feel Remnant's moon shining on me like a searchlight. It makes me feel vulnerable. Weak.
Paranoia had taken a hold of me. Every sound, whether it was a simple cricket or a rustle of leaves, would freeze my skin. I feel like I'm being chased. No, "hunted" would be the better word. That knight is going to show up any second now and finish me off. Who's really the monster here, me or him?
I need to hide. I could transform back and find a hiding spot, but I'm scared my injuries would carry over. I wouldn't last a single night as a severely damaged pup. So, all I can do is crawl and pray for a miracle.
To my surprise, my prayer was answered.
Up ahead I see an Ursa resting beside a tree. So fat and delicate, lying blissfully on its stomach with its neck exposed to me. My heartbeat quickens and my breathing becomes frantic. I crawl faster, biting back the sudden increase in pain in my chest. Please life, give me a break. Don't magically "poof" this grimm out of existence. I really need its corpse to survive!
By the time I reached the grimm, I soon realized that I don't have the strength to lift my arms anymore. Even if I could, I doubt I had the strength to tear its throat open. I've worked my torn muscles beyond exhaustion.
Damn it all! I'm so close.
So fucking close!
If only I had something sharp – oh.
I contemplated my next decision. They say that when a person is pushed into a corner, they're willing to do anything to push back. Desperation is a cruel and amazing act in both ways. If I don't do it, I'm as good as dead. But just the thought of the act makes me consider if my humanity will remain.
I shut off all thoughts.
I sunk my fangs into its neck with an animalistic scowl in my eyes. Its flesh was thick and raw at first but then transitioned into a soft, squishy texture with a familiar liquid oozing into my mouth. The feeling is foreign and I can't help but feel disgusted with myself. The Ursa reacted immediately. It awoke in a state of fury, crying out in pain, and flailed its body furiously. But I dug deep and held on for my life.
And soon came the taste of its meat. It burned in my jaws, its ashes trailing down my throat. Blissful warmth fills my body. The Ursa's struggles slow down until it collapses, stiff and frozen. I should wait and let its body completely dissolve.
But I don't.
I inch forward with my gaping jaw and take another bite. And another. And another. All while its corpse emitted Essence.
My tail swayed back and forth from my finished meal. I curl my reformed feet inward, taking in the rough sensation of dirt. My body was restored. But the feeling of consuming Essence was different this time. The hunger and joy were missing, replaced with a sense of bitter warmth only.
I dig my claws into the soil and snarled.
That damn huntsman.
When I get my claws on him I'll….
I will definitely….!
I reverted to my original form. My short legs are uneasy for some reason and my walk becomes a jittery wobble as I disappear into a bush. Oddly enough I missed sleeping next to my rock. I missed possessing a feeling of superiority with the presence of my pack. Ah right, I guess I'm no longer considered an "alpha" anymore. Can't control a pack if there isn't one anymore, heh heh.
This is my reality.
I was an idiot to think otherwise, but I guess I tried my best to deny the natural order of this world. I knew the day would come. And yet I blew it. There were so many other ways I could have dealt with the huntsman. Mauling him down when he was vulnerable was the most logical approach. But instead, I chose to launch him into the air instead!
I…I don't think I have it in me to take a human's life. I know, I know. That line of morality will get me killed. But if I do it, I would have to discard my humanity. What would that make me? A monster?
To be honest, I hated the concept of change. It's terrifying to venture into the unknown. In my past life, I had always followed a linear path, or at least I thought I did. I thought that so long as I did everything in a similar fashion, nothing would harm me. The reward I got for that was death by falling helicopter. I realize that I've been trying to do the same thing in this world too. Deep down I was afraid of exploring this vast forest, to find and kill new species of grimm to evolve. Instead, I stuck with beowolves and the occasional ursa, content with killing low-tier fodder. And what do I get? A huntsman with a literal lightning bolt in their hand, that's what!
I shut my eyes. My breaths are deep and relaxed.
I can change now.
For the sake of survival, I will change.
I no longer have a territory to stay in nor a pack to maintain. I'm free to do whatever I want!
S-So that's what I'll do.
I'll kill every single grimm in this forest.
I'll become stronger.
Strong enough to become a myth, a legend. Strong enough to become the boogeyman for future children bedtime stories. Strong enough that no huntsman or huntress would even dare hunt me down!
I'll become the greatest beowolf that Remnant will ever know!
"Hah..hah…hah…!" I laughed at my self-declaration.
I think I've been spending too much time with Summer.
Whoops! I accidentally wrote another long chapter!
So, I just realized I'm getting close to 1k followers. That's…I can't think of the words to write lol. What surprises me is that it's an OC fic of all things. Are you people sadists? Do you enjoy MC's suffering? Speaking of MC, I can't use "Alpha" anymore for POV since you know…Captain July Rose's walk.
Yes, I'm aware her name is a month.
I think it's finally time. Next chapter: MC's name and other stuff. SPOILER ALERT: it's NOT Lupis, Fenrir, Wolf, Beo, Doge, or Mike Hunt.