Turn 6: Allegiance to the Strong – Natural Selection

In one of the many Ra Yellow dorm rooms, a boy with red hair wearing a tattered and torn uniform sat in front of his computer monitor. It was the calling feature on the computer that allowed students to converse back and forth with crystal clear video. The person he was talking to was an expert hacker, and was able to not only distort his voice but was able to make the picture so grainy it would be impossible to tell who it was.

"I have caught wind of a little rat who is trying to complicate things for us. Hunter, you have done so good for us in the past, I expect you to do well for us now." Came the heavily modified voice of the person on the other end of the line.

Hunter leaned back in his chair and yawned, he had been bored with the assignments that the face cards had been giving him lately, "Yeah, sure King, just send me the dossier."

The noise of Hunter's printer filled the room as it went to work on the small bio on his next target. It was Hunter's policy that the best way to start a duel was to first know the opponent, and so far it was a good policy. The printer stopped at one page; quite a bit shorter than the previous dossiers that had been sent to him from the higher ups. He read through it carefully, noting his opponent's accomplishments and deck. He smiled as he mulled over his target's name, "Beatrix Sorrowtine, eh? Quite the rat you want eliminated."

"Yes, but she is nothing more than a rat. Take care of her Hunter." King replied, and then the screen went blank.

Hunter looked back down at Beatrix's profile, "Yeah, you are the prey this hunter's been looking for, for a long time."

Beatrix was napping peacefully in her room after a long night of investigating the Spirit Callers with Freya. Freya said that knowing more about the magic that they were using would help shed some light as to their location, but it was a big waste of time. Still, Beatrix did learn quite a bit about the spirit world, more than she wanted to know, but it was still important. At that moment, Beatrix was dreaming about playing Duel Monsters in the professional league, her opponent was a strange character in a suit of which she could not remember the name of. Her phone went off just before she was about play Voltanis the Adjudicator, and she awoke with a start. She rubbed her eyes as she grabbed for her cell phone, "Who?" She asked tiredly.

Freya's hyperactive voice came from the other end, "Hey, Beatrix, still sleeping from last night's history session? Pfft, lightweight. Anyway, I found out some more information; meet me at the usual place. 'Kay bye!"

Beatrix closed her tired eyes and complained, "I was not aware there was a 'usual place'..." She quickly guessed the place, and ran off, hoping that it was the right place. It took her a half hour, but Beatrix finally arrived in front of the school. She stopped just in front of the door and looked around, annoyed that she could not find Freya, "Geez, you don't just tell someone to meet you at a place and not set where it is! Sometimes Freya can drive me crazy."

"That should have proved to be an easy task." Came a listless voice from behind Beatrix.

All of Beatrix's hairs stood on end, she hated it when people snuck up behind her, and the owner of that particular voice was one she had not heard in a while, "Ah! Candace, why'd you sneak up on me like that?"

Candace looked at Beatrix, "I didn't, but you're so inattentive that it's hard not to sneak up on you."

Beatrix groaned, "Ohhh, don't play this game with me; not now okay?"

Candace's face did not change, "So you don't have anything to do with a pathetic fiend attacking me today?"

Beatrix forgot her fatigue when Candace mentioned the fiend, "You were attacked too?!" She blurted out as she grabbed hold of the other girl's shoulders. Upon Beatrix's grabbing her, Candace shot her rival the hardest glare she had ever given anyone, and it was enough to get Beatrix to let go of her, "Uh, sorry. But you were attacked by a monster? Blast; that means they're still at it!"

Candace sighed, "More like I attacked it. That thing didn't stand a chance. Tell me everything you know about this; you seem to know what's going on."

Beatrix smiled and wagged her finger in front of Candace's face, "Uh-uh-uuh, you have to say please to get what you want." Candace simply looked at Beatrix with those intimidating eyes of hers. Beatrix waited for a moment, but then realized that Candace was not going to say please even if her life depended on it. Since she thought it would be best to have Candace as an ally, she decided to tell her everything she knew about the current situation.

She told her about the monster that attacked her, about the Spirit Callers, and her resolve to stop them. Candace simply stood where she was, absorbing the information, her expression not changing at all during the entire story. Beatrix looked for some sort of affirmation to be visible on Candace's face, even though she knew better. After a minute, Candace sighed and told Beatrix what she thought, "It all sounds a little fantastical, but I can't deny that an imp attempted to kill me. I want to see those who are responsible burn."

Beatrix smiled, "Not exactly the reason why I'm going after them, but it would be nice to have a little more help." She said as she held her hand out to Candace.

Candace looked down at Beatrix's hand, and then looked back up, "No, I'll get revenge on my own. I know how to get information around here." She said as she walked past Beatrix, on her own path to getting to the bottom of this Spirit Caller organization.

Beatrix put her hands to her mouth to amplify her voice, "Way to treat someone who's helping you!" She said in a half-annoyed half-joking tone of voice.

Candace put her right hand in the air as a way of dismissing Beatrix's comment, and as she did, in a flash, somebody grabbed her and pulled her into the nearby forest. Beatrix's eyes widened in surprise as her rival disappeared from sight, but she was not about to let Candace's assailant go without a chase. She still needed to meet with Freya, but Freya could wait. Beatrix took off after Candace's kidnapper with all the speed she could muster. Oddly enough, the kidnapper seemed to encourage Beatrix' pursuit, "That's right, run this way! Come on, come on; don't fall behind." Along with the kidnapper's words, Candace could be heard protesting her dilemma and coughing in rage.

In a dark and unkempt room, a third year Obelisk Blue student is standing amongst some books and scribbles on the floor. The scribbles were attempted and failed summoning circles, circles that had been written years ago by students who had summoned a spirit. He had short brown hair that was combed back neatly, and was wearing thin glasses. He was talking on a cell phone with a strange device attached which was used to distort his voice, "A rat convention you say? Dispose of them both then."

A strong female voice could be heard from the doorway, "So you got Hunter on them, eh King? Not taking any chances I see." She said sarcastically.

King turned his attention to the door, "Ah, Queen, so you got my message."

"Yes, you're crummy circles are drawing you too much attention, and now I learn that you have Hunter on the job. Why call me?"

"I haven't any confidence in Hunter; he is merely a diversion tactic. I have Ace spying on them now, he will report to me what their weaknesses are, and if the time comes, we will deal with them. As for why I called you here; you know of the Kelsar hypothesis, right?"

"Of course, it's the symbol in the upper right corner of the summoning circle. What about it?"

"There's something not right with it, I was hoping you would have some sort of input. Jack is still working on the lower right corner now, and I can't bounce ideas off of him."

Queen sighed, "Well, I have tutor duties to report to very soon, so you're gonna have to wait, but try turning Kelsar upside down. You might learn something valuable."

King put his hand under his chin while he though of what Queen had said, "A reverse Kelsar, ingenious. Well, go to your tutor job, we can't have people getting suspicious."

Back in the forest, Hunter stopped at the edge of the island; a precariously tall cliff with wicked jagged rocks at the bottom. Truly a place of no escape, but that was the way he intended it. He put Candace down, who proceeded to berate him, "So now you're trapped; what was the whole point of this charade?"

Hunter smiled as Beatrix came out of the forest, and stopped just in front of them, "Ah, so you finally made it." He told her as he pressed a button on a remote control on his belt. Without warning, a strange gun popped up from off the cliff, and pointed right at Candace. A silent swooping noise came from the gun and a net shot forth and wrapped around the sickly girl. Candace fell to the ground with a thud. Hunter laughed triumphantly, "That's one down, now it's time for the other." He said as the gun automatically moved to point at Beatrix.

Beatrix held her right arm up, which had a Duel Disk on it, and proclaimed, "I challenge you to a duel! As a duelist and a man, you have to accept!"

Hunter snapped his fingers and pressed a button on his remote control, which turned off the sentry gun, "Darn, you got me there." He said with a strange sense of glee, after all, he had wanted this duel, "When I win, I'm gonna take you both to King."

Beatrix's Life Points: 4000

Hunter's Life Points: 4000

"Well, if I win, you're going to tell me all you can about the Spirit Callers and let Candace go!" Beatrix proclaimed as she swiped six cards from her deck, "I summon Disciple of the Forbidden Spell in attack mode, and set one card face-down. What's your move kidnapper?"

A flash of light signalled the summoning of the Disciple of the Forbidden Spell. The warrior held his katana in front of him in one hand, and had a large clay jug on his right shoulder. The green haired man grunted as he awaited the opposition.

Disciple of the Forbidden Spell ATK 1700 DEF 800

Hunter frowned, "Please, kidnapper is such a bad word. I prefer to be called Hunter, thank you very much!" He said as he drew his card, "I set two cards face-down; one a monster, and the other a trap. Your turn little missy."

Beatrix snorted as she drew her card, "Well I prefer to be called Beatrix. Now, Disciple of the Forbidden Spell will attack your face-down monster!"

The swordsman ran up to the horizontal face-down card, and slashed it with his deadly blade, neatly slicing it in two. The hologram of the card's two halves then shattered, and the visage of a flying squirrel could be seen flinching and then shattering as well. Hunter laughed and patted his chest, "Thank you. By destroying Nimble Momonga, I gain a thousand life points and then I get to summon two more from my deck in defense mode!"

Hunter's Life Points: 5000

Candace, who had since given up on trying to escape her bonds, said calmly, "Way to play the hero Beatrix; let your opponent get the upper hand."

Beatrix smiled confidently, "Way to play the strong silent type; by getting captured and not shutting up."

Candace closed her eyes, "Touché"

Hunter drew his card, "Stop babbling like ninnies, and let's get back to the duel. I summon Dire Tiger in attack mode!"

A large tiger appeared before Hunter; its claws were longer and thicker than a regular tiger's, and its head was massive. The beast let out a threatening roar that caused birds to take off from the surrounding trees in panic. The tiger leered at Beatrix's warrior, almost as if it were imposing on its territory.

Dire Tiger ATK 1800 DEF 1200

Hunter then took his deck out of his Duel Disk, and began looking through it, "Also, when Dire Tiger is summoned, I can take a Dire Bear from my deck and add it to my hand." He found his card, added it to his hand, and shuffled his deck, "Now, I'll switch my Nimble Momongas to attack mode, and let my beasts feast on your life points! Dire Tiger, attack Disciple of the Forbidden Spell with Feral Claw!"

Dire Tiger took off like a bullet, but just as it was about to lay its massive paws on her monster, Beatrix whipped her hand to the side, "I'm afraid there'll be no feast, because I activate Radiant Mirror Force! Since all three of your monsters are in attack mode, they'll all be destroyed!" She said as her trap card rose on the field for all to see.

A transparent barrier of light surrounded the Disciple of the Forbidden Spell, and Dire Tiger bounded off of it, and collided with Hunter's other two monsters. A resulting explosion caused Hunter to raise his arms over his head, and when he looked back, all three of his monsters were gone. He was not done, however, "I activate a trap card of my own! It's called Running Through the Forest, and it allows me to special summon a beast if one is destroyed by a card effect, like your Radiant Mirror Force; so now, I can summon that Dire Bear of mine!"

At that moment, a huge bear appeared on Hunter's side of the field. It stood on its hind legs, because if it stood on all fours, it would not fit between Hunter and Beatrix. The creature stood at twelve feet tall, and had sickle-like claws that appeared like they could tear any creature apart.

Dire Bear ATK 1900 DEF 1600

Hunter pointed his finger at Beatrix's monster, "Dire Bear, attack Disciple of the Forbidden Spell!"

The huge lumbering bear took slow and careful steps to Beatrix's monster; a truly agonizing process, but eventually the bear came close enough to the Disciple of the Forbidden Spell to attack. The bear lashed out with its claw, which caused the swordsman to promptly shatter. A huge gust of wind came off from the Dire Bear's paw, and struck across Beatrix's chest.

Beatrix's Life Points: 3800

"I end my turn." Hunter said sinisterly.

Beatrix bent over, clutching her chest, before drawing her card. She then instantly slapped a monster down on her Duel Disk, "I summon another Disciple of the Forbidden Spell, but this time, because I have one in the grave, I can choose an attribute, and if my disciple attacks a monster of that attribute, it is destroyed. I choose Earth, so now my disciple can attack your Dire Bear without fear! Disciple of the Forbidden Spell, destroy Dire Bear with Forbidden Energy Blast!"

Beatrix's new Disciple of the Forbidden Spell got on one knee, and held his jug over his should like a bazooka. He took careful aim at the huge target before him, and then spoke some strange magical words. A circle of white magical energy surrounded the opening of the jug, and a bright violet beam of magical energy burst forth from the jug, and struck the gigantic bear on the chest. The bear roared in pain, and eventually shattered.

Hunter covered his head with one arm as wind rushed past him, and when he recovered, in one swift motion, he grabbed his deck, "Due to Dire Bear's effect; if it is destroyed I can special summon one Dire Lion!" A huge lion shined to life in front of Hunter, a large creature that was fifteen feet long, but not as big as the beast it replaced. The Dire Lion had spines protruding from its spine, and had extremely sharp claws.

Dire Lion ATK 2000 DEF 1500

"Man, where are all these beasts coming from; the woodworks?" Beatrix asked; she was joking around, but she knew that this was serious business; her opponent kept getting monsters out as fast as she was destroying them and worse yet, they were getting stronger every time.

Candace rolled her eyes, "That's it; I don't want to be rescued any more. Just take me away; far away from this idiot." She said in a monotone voice.

Beatrix winced, "Ow that hurts Candace. Anyway, I end my turn."

Hunter swiped a card from the top of his deck, "I set a card face-down, and have Dire Lion attack Disciple of the Forbidden Spell!"

The Lion turned its body quickly to the side so that it could swipe its lethal claws across Disciple of the Forbidden Spell's chest. The man yelled in pain as he shattered, but the lion's claws did not stop there, it continued straight for Beatrix. The girl dropped to a knee because of the pain, but soon rose to her feet.

Beatrix's Life Points: 3500

"I'll end my turn here." Hunter says, watching Beatrix like a cougar watches its prey.

Beatrix drew, "I summon The Creator Incarnate!" A man in golden armour appeared before Beatrix, "He is a special monster whom I can tribute to special summon The Creator from my hand!" Suddenly, The Creator Incarnate held his right hand out in front of him, and a glowing white energy covered his entire body. The man shined out of existence, and was replaced by a huge golden statuesque creature whose body crackled with electricity. The Creator stood in front of Beatrix between her and the Dire Lion, who looked like a kitten next to the massive forger of life.

The Creator ATK 2300 DEF 3000

"Next, I'll use The Creator's effect to discard Bountiful Artemis to revive Disciple of the Forbidden Spell!" Beatrix said as her proud warrior shined to a new life, "And since it worked out so well last time, I'm going to choose Earth! Now, Disciple of the Forbidden Spell, destroy Dire Lion with Forbidden Energy Blast!" Disciple of the Forbidden Spell got to one knee again, and fired a similar blast of violet magic that destroyed Hunter's Dire Lion.

A mechanism within Hunter's Duel Disk hummed to life, and a card slid out of his graveyard. Hunter took it, and told Beatrix why he was able to do that, "Dire Lion's effect, when it is destroyed, I can special summon a dire animal to my side of the field, and I choose Dire Tiger!" The large tiger appeared on Hunter's field again, and roared at Beatrix for having the audacity to destroy it.

"It won't be around long though, because I'll have The Creator attack it. Spark of Uncreation!" Beatrix says.

Hunter pressed a button on his Duel Disk, a smug smile was on his face, "No, that won't be happening. My Nightmare Wheel will bound your Creator to the device, and deal five hundred damage to you during every one of my standby phases!" As The Creator pointed its palm at Dire Tiger, a horrifying torture wheel appeared behind it and black leather straps lashed out at the great spirit. The Creator put up a valiant struggle, but was overcome by the Nightmare Wheel, and was latched down onto it.

Beatrix looked at her bound monster, a look of determination on her face, "Don't worry, I'm getting you out of there! I activate Breakthrough Light! This spell card allows me to tribute my Disciple of the Forbidden Spell to destroy your Nightmare Wheel!" Hunter's smug look faded when the Disciple of the Forbidden Spell turned into an arcing light that struck and dismantled the Nightmare Wheel. The torture device fell to pieces, and The Creator broke the now weak bonds that once held him, "Breakthrough Light is a normal spell card, so I can't attack anymore this turn, so it's your go Hunter."

Candace looked up at Hunter, "That was a good move kidnapper. Not only did she eradicate your worthless Nightmare Wheel, but she got rid of the only monster you could attack to damage her on your turn. What are you going to do now?" She taunted emotionlessly.

Hunter whipped his head to Candace, "The name's Hunter! I'll deal with her, just you wait!" He said, although he was actually not certain at this point, but all he could do was draw. His arrogant smile returned to his lips when he saw what card he drew, "I activate the field spell card Full Moon Night! The full moon revives the fighting spirit that lay dormant in my beast, and transform it into a lycanthrope!" It suddenly became darker, and a perfect round moon appeared in the sky. Hunter's monster's body reacted to the moon, and warped into a new shape, its muscles bulged from the mystic power that lay within it. No longer just a Dire Tiger, this creature now stands on two legs like a human, and howls in primal instinct.

Were Tiger ATK 2000 DEF 1300

"But that's not all; I also equip Were Tiger with Wild Kunai, a weapon that only beast-warriors can use. With it, Were Tiger gains four hundred attack points!" Hunter said as a large knife appeared on Were Tiger's arm; it was tethered to its arm with a chain wrapped around it several times, and the blade extended down the lycanthrope's arm one foot.

Were Tiger ATK 2400 DEF 1300

Hunter then points at The Creator, "Were Tiger, attack The Creator! Wild Fury!"

Hunter's Were Tiger ran over to The Creator with a fury that Beatrix had never seen in a monster before. Drool poured from the lycanthrope's fanged mouth as it approached the massive stone creator of life, and lashed out at it with its extremely sharp claws and kunai weapon. Something that sounded like a grunt came from The Creator as the claws passed through it, and caused it to explode. Beatrix began coughing from all of the smoke.

Beatrix's Life Points: 3400

Hunter pointed at Beatrix, "Hah, you thought I was down and out when you brought out that Creator of yours didn't you? But now I have the upper hand; now you have my were cards to deal with!"

"My turn, draw!" Beatrix said with a confidence that took Hunter aback, "I summon my third and final Disciple of the Forbidden Spell!" The now familiar warrior took his place in front of Beatrix, holding his magical jug over his shoulder, ready to fire upon Hunter's lycanthrope, "With two Disciples in the grave, I can choose two attributes, and I choose Earth and Fire! Now, Disciple of the Forbidden Spell, destroy Were Tiger!"

Hunter was slightly amused by this; of course, he had something up his sleeve that allowed him to retain his composure. Were Tiger exploded as did a lot of his previous beasts from the Disciple's effect, but when it was gone; another beast was in its place. It was a monster Hunter played before, Dire Bear.

Hunter's Life Points: 4500

"When you destroy Were Tiger, I can summon a beast in my graveyard at the price of five hundred life points! Also, since Full Moon Night is on the field, my Dire Bear transforms into Were Bear!" As Hunter explained this, a lumbering behemoth appeared in front of him. Like Were Tiger before it, Were Bear stood like a human, armed with a huge battle axe, and it had the look of the devil in its eyes.

Were Bear ATK 2100 DEF 1400

Beatrix slid a card in her Duel Disk, "I'll set a card and end my turn."

Hunter drew his card, and instantly pointed a finger at the Disciple of the Forbidden Spell, the creature that had been annoying him all duel, "Were Bear, destroy Disciple of the Forbidden Spell with Midnight Horror Axe!" The massive human-animal hybrid charged at Beatrix's fearless warrior, and raised its axe high over his head. Despite having the power to destroy Were Bear if it was attacking, when on defense, he was not so adept, and the lycanthrope's great axe passed through him with little resistance. When the axe struck the ground, Disciple of the Forbidden Spell exploded, catching Beatrix in as well, "Come on! Keep trying to defeat my ruthless beasts! Only peril awaits you!"

Beatrix's Life Points: 3000

Beatrix did not know if she could get out of this situation. So far, Hunter had been playing monsters one after another, each one being more powerful than the last, and always seeming to get out of every pinch she had put him in. The young girl stood there with her recently drawn card to her side; she was thinking about what she would do from there. She put the card in her hand and thought about her strategy from there. She had to find a way to prevent Hunter from bringing out another were creature, which he would inevitably do, or at least some way to benefit from it.

Candace yawned; Hunter's strategy was just too predictable, and she already knew how Beatrix dueled. She had a dull look in her eyes as she struggled a bit in her bonds, "Will you hurry up and crush this cretin?"

Beatrix peeked out from the cards that she was concentrating on, and had an apologetic expression, "Sorry Candace." She said sheepishly.

Hunter stomped in a rage, "Hey, don't treat me like some kind of second-rate villain! I am Hunter; King's problem solver, and ace duelist!"

Candace rolled her eyes, "Please, you keep replacing bad monsters with semi-good monsters without end. As a duelist you rank pretty low; even Beatrix can conjure some pretty imposing monsters."

Beatrix's voice could be heard over Candace's, "Thanks!" She said, but when she realized that Candace was actually insulting her, she quickly added, "Hey!"

Candace continued her speech to Hunter as if she had not heard Beatrix's protest, "I bet you haven't even seen King, or even heard his voice."

Hunter was about to protest when he realized that Candace was right; he had never seen King's face, nor has he even heard his real voice. He shook his head and salvaged what was left of his confidence, "Yeah, well I'm still the great Hunter! I have defeated all of my foes up until now, so I can't lose!"

Beatrix raised her left hand, "Um, you know that this is my turn, right? I thought the unspoken rule was that all speeches were to be made on your own turn. I don't agree with Candace; you are a good duelist. Even still, I have to duel for not only myself, but for Candace who cannot defend herself right now. So it is really me who can't lose this duel." She said with a great determination, "No matter what, I will defeat you Hunter! I summon Majestic Mech – Ohka!"

A bright white light erupted in front of Beatrix, and when it dimmed the visage of a lion could be seen. It was a large and proud lion of the heavens; a white mechanical appearing creature with red outlines. It roared in its resolve to help Beatrix, a terrifyingly loud roar that even the Were Bear could not withstand.

Majestic Mech – Ohka ATK 2400 DEF 1400

"Hey, how come you can summon a level five monster?" Hunter protested instantly.

Beatrix was glad to answer her opponent's question, "Ohka's effect; I can summon it without tributes, but it returns to heaven at the end of my turn. Now Ohka, destroy Were Bear! Roar of Benevolence!"

The heavenly lion's head reared back, and let loose with a deafening roar whose sonic energy could be seen. The twirling transparent force struck Hunter's Were Bear, and as it did, the giant bear sank to its knees, dropping its axe to hold its ears. The man-beast shattered after a few seconds of this assault, and then Hunter felt the sting of the attack.

Hunter's Life Points: 4200

Without rhyme, reason, nor warning, Freya burst forth from the forest. She had various sticks and leaves sticking out of her hair, and she was out of breath. She panted several times and then pointed her finger at Beatrix, "You had to come this far? This far?! What are you doing anyway...hey a duel! Did I miss anything?"

Beatrix sighed and shook her head, Candace groaned in annoyance, and Hunter simply blinked in confusion. Beatrix then asked her friend, "How did you find us?"

Freya smiled and made a "V" sign with her index and middle fingers, "GPS location transmitter in your phone! How else?"

Candace was reaching her wits end with all of these slow downs. She spoke loudly in a voice that demanded respect, and her head darted between all of the people there, "Beatrix, finish your turn already. Kidnapper, hurry up and lose. Whoever you are, don't interrupt."

Beatrix shook her head with a smile on her face, but before she could do anything else, Hunter spoke up, "Now that I can actually talk, I'm going to use Were Bear's ability. When he is destroyed by battle, I can special summon a beast in my hand, and I choose Dire Lion! Because of the effect of Full Moon Night, Dire Lion undergoes a metamorphosis that makes him into a lycanthrope! Meet my Were Lion!" Another large humanoid figure appeared before Hunter; a creature with the head and mane of a lion. This powerful creature had its large arms crossed over its chest.

Were Lion ATK 2200 DEF 1200

Beatrix shot her arm into the air, "I was waiting for you to do that! I activate Calling Allies! With this card I can special summon fairies in my deck whose total levels are equal to your monster; so I summon two Heralds of Green Light and one Herald of Purple Light in defense mode!" The three round fairies shone to life in front of Beatrix, "I'll end my turn with a face-down card." After Beatrix said that, Ohka faded away, and disappeared from sight.

Freya sneaked her way over beside Candace, and crouched down so she could speak with the fallen girl, "So, what happened?"

"Use your imagination." Candace spat back at Freya.

Freya promptly stood up, "Gee, sor-ry."

Hunter drew his card, "I'll attack your Herald of Green Light with Were Lion!" As he said that, the lion uncrossed its arms, and lunged for one of the fairies in front of Beatrix, but before its fist could reach it, Beatrix interrupted, "I activate Holy Retribution! This trap card uses the life force of a light monster to negate your attack, and damage you by an amount equal to your monster's level times two hundred; fourteen hundred!" A wave of light shone from Herald of Green Light, and washed over Were Lion and Hunter. When the blinding light dissipated, both monsters were gone, and Hunter was kneeling and groaning after taking such a hard hit.

Hunter's Life Points: 2800

"Now that a counter trap has been activated, I can tribute all of my fairies in order to special summon Voltanis the Adjudicator!" Beatrix said as her family's guardian descended to Earth in front of her, "With Voltanis' effect, I can destroy Were Lion and Full Moon Night. Light of Judgement!" Voltanis raised his staff above his head. A holy power shone from its end, and shot down, raining destruction down upon Hunter.

Hunter waved his arm to the side, "When Were Lion is destroyed all cards on your side of the field are destroyed; so say goodbye to your Adjudicator!"

Beatrix looked on in horror as her protector shattered, leaving her defenseless, "No, Voltanis! I'm sorry, I didn't know!"

Hunter laughed with confidence, "Don't feel too bad, because you can still draw two cards." Beatrix had a vacant look in her eyes, but she drew her cards, "Also, because a beast-warrior was destroyed while he was in my hand, I can special summon Enkidu, Lord of the Wild Beasts in attack mode!" At that, a large fist shot through the Earth in front of Hunter, and a huge shirtless man dug his way onto the field.

Enkidu, Lord of the Wild Beasts ATK 2500 DEF 2200

Hunter pointed at Beatrix, "Now direct attack on Beatrix!"

Enkidu ran towards Beatrix, and drove his fist home to knock the young duelist back. Beatrix got up slowly, holding her right shoulder, which was now in pain from the fall. She had two cards to mount a counterattack, but would it be enough? She had very little life points left after that direct attack, and there were not very many options left open to her. Voltanis was gone, and the two cars she had drawn would be no good to her the next turn.

While she was contemplating her imminent defeat, Beatrix's eyes wandered over to Candace. She was already a captive, and despite her strength as a duelist, Hunter was not going to give her the chance to defend her, so if she was to ever escape this perdiciment, Beatrix would have to win this duel. More than that, she could not afford to lose here, and to let the Spirit Callers have their way. She could not lose!

With more determination than she had ever known, Beatrix drew her card, intently focused on her goal. She had to defeat Hunter, she had to save Candace, and she had to bring down the Spirit Callers. She looked at her card, the reward for her determination. Beatrix raised this card in the air, "I activate the spell card Legacy of the Adjudicator! With Voltanis in my Graveyard, I can remove him from play so he'll act as a tribute for a one tribute summon. With this effect, I summon Majestic Mech – Goryu in attack mode!" The spirit of Voltanis appeared before Beatrix, and held his palm open and facing the ground he towered over. A snaking light emerged from his hand, and settled in front of Beatrix. The light took the form of a great wyrm Goryu, lord of the mechs of heaven.

Majestic Mech – Goryu ATK 2900 DEF 1800

Hunter stood in awe of the powerful monster before him, but the knowledge that his life points would not be lowered to zero after an attack by Goryu comforted him, "Heh, she'll destroy Enkidu this turn, but I can always revive him by discarding Enraged Battle Ox my next turn. Then she'll be finished!" He thought.

Beatrix slid another card into her Duel Disk, "I active the magic of another spell card; Helping Hands From Above! This spell allows me to focus the spirit of a departed fairy into Goryu, giving it another attack up to the attack strength of that monster! So I remove Majestic Mech – Ohka from play to give Goryu another attack at twenty-four hundred attack points!"

Hunter let a surprised yelp escape his lips when he heard what Beatrix had told him, "But that would lower my life points to zero!"

"It would! Majestic Mech – Goryu, end Hunter's career with Blinding Light Surge!" Goryu did as Beatrix commanded, and let loose with two massive blasts of pure light energy from the golden cavity that made up its neck at Enkidu. The pressure exerted from the blast knocked Hunter back a few feet.

Hunter's Life Points: 2400

Majestic Mech – Goryu ATK 2400 DEF 1800

Another blast of light came directly at Hunter, completely covering him, and blocking him from sight. Despite the fact that he could not be seen, his agonized scream could still be heard, and it rose above even the roar of Goryu's attack. The light disappeared, and as did the rest of the holograms, and Hunter sank to both of his knees.

Hunter's Life Points: 0

"I-I lost." Hunter said blankly.

Beatrix knew that Hunter was too mentally distraught to move at that moment, so she had great confidence that he would not escape while she untied Candace. Her blue haired rival instantly rose to her feet the second she could, putting Beatrix off balance, and causing her to fall to the ground. Candace made a bee-line for Hunter, who was still off in his own broken world. She tried to get him to talk, but he was too introspective to respond. Beatrix, who had been helped up by Freya, also walked towards her defeated opponent. She offered him her hand, which he refused. Beatrix sighed and said, "Well, I can see how you were undefeated for a while; you're one tough cookie."

Hunter remained on his knees, but lifted his head to speak with Beatrix, "I have no real affiliation with the organization; I just follow the strongest who can promise me more of what I want the most; battle. I may have never met King before, but I know he is strong. You...You might be in his league, in either case, I'll follow you."

Beatrix nodded, "Alright, then tell me everything you can about the Spirit Callers, including their next meeting place if you can."

"They are close to their goal; King probably already has the info he needs to complete his ultimate summoning circle. I was never told anything important like their last meeting place, but I do know where you can find those who do. Ace and Joker, not quite face cards and not quite foot soldiers, but King trusts them. They know where you must go." Hunter tells Beatrix.

Beatrix squatted down so she could meet Hunter's eyes, "Where are they?"

Hunter held Beatrix's gaze, showing that he was not lying, "Duel Academy's basement; tomorrow at nineteen hundred hours."

"Got it." Beatrix said as she walked toward the forest, "Oh, and don't join anymore evil groups. If you do, you'll have me to deal with."

Hunter nodded, "Okay."

Free Talk: Wow, this is the longest turn yet! I'm surprised, when I started writing it; I thought it was going to wind up being rather short, like the one that preceded it. Well, I had fun designing Hunter's Deck, despite the fact that it was going to make a one-time appearance. He even had a card that came after Enkidu, but unforeseen time restraints cut it out of the picture. Oh well, maybe he'll make another appearance after all. One thing I was focused on putting in this Free Talk section all week was informing you all of what the opening theme to Shuffle is! All shows need an opening theme, and Shuffle's is none other than Makka na Chikai! I first heard this as the opening theme to an anime I love called Buso Renkin, and when I read a translation of the lyrics, I knew that this fit Beatrix's character throughout this entire first season perfectly! I'm already working on selecting the opening theme to season two, and you'll learn of it when season two rolls around. Anyway, I hope you all enjoy Turn 6 and Makka na Chikai and have a good day. Remember: fair play, fair duel.

Today's Strongest Card

Legacy of the Adjudicator/Normal Spell Card

Remove from play 1 "Voltanis the Adjudicator" in your Graveyard from play. This turn, you may Tribute Summon a monster assuming that one of the necessary tributes is fulfilled, but you may tribute no other monster for the Tribute Summon. You may use this effect only once during the current duel.