Twin One slowly looked over his shoulder at Two running down (or rather sliding down) the hill behind him. He knew all along that his brother probably wouldn't be staying alone in the Escalade, and would be catching up to him before he got too far. He smiled to himself as Two stumbled up beside him, gasping for breath and positioning his gun where it would be more comfortable to hold.
"Of all the fields around here, why did you have to pick one with hills?" Two's chest heaved.
"I didn't exactly choose this one for any particular reason."
Silence followed the Twins' conversation as they stood and looked out over the broad field ahead of them. Nothing could be heard except for cicadas and birds in the shrubbery and nearby trees. A slight breeze could be felt here and there, enough to move the leaves and the Twins' coattails. Adding to it, an occasional butterfly happened along, dancing merrily from wildflower to wildflower. If it had been anyone else, the scenery and atmosphere would have been pleasant, thrilling, and peaceful to look upon, and be in the middle of, but the Twins, being what they are, only saw it as bleak and uninteresting. It wasn't real. It was nothing but computer code masquerading as something that used to be real in order to deceive. And the Twins were doomed to stay in it for the rest of their lives. How could anyone look at that as being beautiful?
"What do we do now?" Two sighed.
"We do what we came out here to do."
"Wonder if it's not out here?"
"Then we go somewhere else." One sighed. "If we have to, we'll turn the Matrix upside down and inside out. We don't dare go home until we find the cursed thing. You know the Merovingian will skin us alive if we go back to the chateau empty-handed."
Two shuddered at One's words. He hated being at the Merovingian's mercy, especially when he was exceedingly mad. Even though they both knew that they were ten times better than the old stupid unicorn they were searching for, they had to find it or suffer punishment from their Master, or worse yet, get sent back to the Source.
"What's the matter with you?" One turned a puzzled look toward Two, after hearing him yelp.
Two put his fingers to his mouth. "I bit my lip."
One shook his head.
"I'm scared, One." Two continued. "I'm afraid we won't be able to find it and we'll never be able to go back home. And if we do go back, I'm scared of what the Master will do to us!"
One patted Two on the shoulder to comfort him. "Don't worry, we'll find it. I don't care what we'll have to do in order to do it, but I guarantee that we'll find it."
Two smiled while feeling better already. He watched as One started walking forward, shifting his gun to his left hand. It was clear that the property didn't belong to anyone because the grass around there had the appearance of not knowing what a lawnmower was. In fact weeds, some as tall as your waist, were everywhere as well as wildflowers of every kind imaginable. The only place the grass was short and appeared to have been cut within the past couple of days was around the sides of the road where the Twins had parked their Escalade.
Two didn't want to go into the tall grass, but he forced himself to follow his brother. The sooner they got started the sooner they would find the unicorn and the sooner they found it the sooner they could go back to the chateau.
It was a good hour before the Twins came to a stop in order to rest before going on. They had not seen any signs of the unicorn so far. The only things worth reporting were a couple of scared rabbits, a numerous amount of birds, a snake, and a groundhog, not to mention a thousand butterflies and other insects that were scared out of hiding by the Twins walking through the tall grasses.
"Are you sure that thing is here?" Two groaned while placing his gun down on the ground and rubbing his sore arm. "I am going to be really grumpy if we've come all this far for nothing!"
"Oh, belt up, will you?" One narrowed his gaze. "All you've done since we've come out here is complain. At least we aren't back at the chateau with the Master yelling at us for some reason or other."
"True." Two eased himself down. "We should have at least brought a machete, though! Gracious, this place is unbelievable." Two broke off a piece of weed and rolled it between his fingers.
"The thing that gets me is how we always end up in these situations." One mused. "We come up with this brilliant plan to get rid of the unicorn, then the next thing we know we're out here in some wilderness trying to find the thing."
After clearing some of the grass back, Two sat down on the ground while listening to his brother continue.
"And if we don't find it, we don't dare go home."
"Not to mention the tall grass we have to walk through." Two added.
"You know? This day can't get any worse." Said One.
Two raised his eyebrows a little as he watched One walk up beside him. "You wanna bet?"
Just as One was about to answer, a shrill scream came from across the field. It was faint and distant, but it was clearly heard by the both of them. And they both knew right away what it was. It had sounded like a horse's scream, only shriller and darker.
Two immediately jumped up from the ground and snatched his gun. "That was it! You were right, it is out here!" Two glanced at One.
"Shhh!" One covered Two's mouth. "I'm trying to figure out where the sound came from."
The Twins stood as still as they could, not daring to make a sound, and listened for the unicorn to scream again. Just as One had thought, another shrill cry came, this time sounding closer than the last one.
"I do believe it's coming this way." Two shakily whispered.
"Get your gun ready." Said One as he lifted his own gun and readied it.
Two lifted his gun and cocked it. "How are we ever going to find it in this tall grass?"
"We just wait." One whispered, moving his gun slowly across the landscape and testing out the sight.
"Besides, the grass is only up to our waists. If we can't find a unicorn, that's slightly larger than a regular horse, in waist-tall grass…, we're in serious need of help."
Two looked around him. "Oh yeah."
"Sh! Listen…" One grabbed onto Two's arm. Two nervously raised his head up. "I hear something running this way. Look! Over there!" One pointed to where something was moving and coming up fast through the grasses.
"It's it, One!"
Sure enough, the enormous black unicorn was running at full speed in the Twins' direction. With ears laid back, its silver mane and tail were flapping in the wind and its red horn glistened like a ruby in the sunlight. The thundering sound of its hooves against the earth sounded like a dozen horses stampeding.
One placed his rifle up to his face and peered through the sight. The unicorn was in perfect range of the gun, but was running toward the Twins. If One missed, it would be the end of them both if they couldn't jump out of the way in time.
"Get ready to run or phase." One whispered.
"If I miss, we're going to have to get out of here pretty fast."
"You can't miss!" Two's voice got louder. "You're an excellent shot."
"I don't care if I'm an excellent shot or not, just be ready to carry out another plan if something goes wrong."
One slowly squeezed back on the trigger, readying himself for the split second that was about to come.
Closer and closer the unicorn came. By this time its tongue was hanging out the side of its glowing mouth and the sides of its body heaved heavily, but no matter what it never once slowed its pace. As the dark beast came closer to the Twins, it lowered its head with its long horn sticking straight forward in hopes of charging whoever dared to get in its way. Even in the daylight you could see clearly that the unicorn's eyes, nose and mouth glowed with a red tint, looking somewhat like a figment from someone's nightmare. The only thing the moment needed was for it to be night with a full moon and then it would look like a scene from one of Washington Irving's novels.
"Steady…" Said One, squeezing the trigger back even more.
Two nervously glanced from the unicorn to One. "What are you waiting for? Go ahead and shoot the thing!"
"I'm waiting for it to get closer so I definitely won't miss."
Two backed up slowly, getting himself ready to run.
"Don't move!" One sharply whispered. "Don't do anything that would distract it! I need it running this way for me to hit it!"
It was too late. The unicorn had spotted Two moving and changed its course. Now instead of running at the Twins, it was running at an angle, towards Two's direction.
"Blast!" One said through his teeth. "Maybe I can still hit it." Again he placed the gun to his face and followed the galloping beast.
"One, do something!" Two shouted.
With a sudden sharp bang, Two saw the unicorn fall to the earth, kicking and scrambling.
"I got it!" One shouted in glee. He quickly readied his gun again and fired another dart at the beast in case the first dart didn't work.
Two sighed in relief and started running toward the unicorn, while taking out a medium sized rope that had been coiled and fastened to his belt. Before Two reached their prize, however, the unicorn began to move. Two stopped and backed away as he watched the unicorn get to its feet and take the tranquilizer darts out of its side with its fanged teeth. The dark being peered at Two with pupil-less eyes and snorted. Apparently the drugged darts had no effect on the unicorn. If that was the case, the Twins didn't know how they were going to get it back to the chateau.
Two continued to eye the creature while getting enough courage to move. He looked down at the rope he held in his hands and then back at the unicorn. All he had to do was lasso the beast, but for some reason he couldn't get his hands or any other part of his body to move. The unicorn pawed the ground and violently jerked its head from side to side and up and down while making snorting noises.
"Two, he's about to charge! Move away or phase before you get mauled!" One shouted from behind Two.
"I can't!" Two shouted back rather nervously.
"Well, I want to and my mind is thinking about it, but my feet won't move and my body won't phase." Two swallowed hard and his heart beat violently within his chest. He was so sure that the unicorn was going to charge towards him any second and that would be it. He wasn't going to admit to anyone that he was totally petrified, although he knew that One knew it.
"Hold still and I'll try and draw his attention away from you. Once his attention is completely on me, throw that rope around his neck!"
Two couldn't see his brother, but he could hear him running around beside him. Then he saw him out of the corner of his eye. One was running around him and the unicorn while waving his arms to get the attention of the creature off Two. It worked. When the unicorn caught sight of One, it turned its full attention towards him, forgetting that Two was even there. It followed the twin with angry eyes while continuing to paw the ground and jerk its head. Nickering eerily, it finally started to move in One's direction, but stopped as if it wasn't sure that it wanted to charge the twin or not. Instead, it stood still and twitched its ears and swished its tail.
Two took the first chance he got to rope the huge and troublesome beast before anything else happened. After tying the end of the rope in a noose, he twirled it a few times then let it fly through the air, landing in a perfect lasso around the unicorn's neck.
"I got him, One!" Two called to his brother on the other side of the creature.
At feeling the rope around its neck, the unicorn turned its attention towards Two again. This time the animal didn't hesitate and charged directly at Two! Forgetting who and what he was, Two took off running for his life, still clutching the rope that had the unicorn at the other end of it.
One watched as his brother tore through the field in hopes of getting away from the enraged Exile that followed him.
"TWO!" One shouted. "Drop the rope! Drop the rope!"
Two was too preoccupied with trying to find a safe place to hear him though. One continued to watch as the unicorn chased Two around the field.
"For goodness' sake why doesn't he phase?" One mumbled to himself, watching as Two circled around. "Wait a minute. He's coming back this way!"
One's eyes widened when he saw Two and the unicorn coming in his direction. He took off running too before he realized what he was doing. In the middle of his running, he glanced to his right to see Two coming up fast and even running on past him, the rope trailing behind. The unicorn screamed from behind them and it was at this moment that One stopped abruptly and closed his eyes. He had no clue why. Maybe it was because he was half expecting the unicorn to end them both right then and there. Gathering his wits, he phased just in time and the unicorn ran through his transparent body. What he heard next was Two hollering, the unicorn screaming, a thump of hooves and the unicorn galloping away.
One materialized and was afraid to open his eyes. He was afraid of what he might see. It took him a few minutes, but he finally and slowly opened them. He didn't see Two anywhere. Fearing the worst, he forced himself to call for his brother.
"Two?" he called. "Two, where are you?"
"I'm over here." Came Two's faint voice. It was coming from the other side of a small hill that lay just a few feet away from where One was standing. He breathed a sigh of relief and quickly started in that direction. At the top of the hill, he peered down into a huge black hole that was several feet deep.
"I'm down here, One. I'm down in the hole."
"Phase and come up here."
Two did as his brother said and materialized next to One.
"What happened?" One asked, when Two got his breath back.
"Well, I let go of the rope and just when I did I fell down into that hole. The unicorn almost fell in after me, but jumped to avoid the hole at the last minute and continued on."
"Fortunate for you that you decided to finally drop the rope." One placed his hands on his hips. "Never hang on to a rope with a maddened unicorn at the end, especially if its horn is pointed toward your back!"
"I know that now." Two grinned.