The Chaos Series by Kulmanari
Truth Seeker - The Chaos Demons - Legend of the Black Knight - Reflections In Time
"September 7th, 2008"
"The power of the Children of Light is directly related to the strength of the darkness. The stronger the darkness becomes, the more power and abilities the Children unlock. Without the threat of true darkness, they are just natural born leaders and the warriors of our legends. With a true threat however, they become something more…" Observer of the First Battle for Earth
There was nothing about that Sunday morning that seemed different. Nothing was out of place and there were no strange feelings signaling that today was going to be any different from the day before. No one could have predicted that this day was a turning point in the history of mankind. It started as a normal day, just like any other.
Cody Martin slowly returned to consciousness early in the morning, unwilling to open his eyes just yet. His dream had been pleasant, though as he lay there waking up he struggled to remember what it had been about. Eventually he gave up and stretched his arms and legs feeling the cold air touch his bare limbs, such a stark contrast to the comfortable warmth of his body heat trapped underneath the blankets. Cody yawned deeply and then rubbed the gunk out of his eyes before opening them to the soft blue light streaming in from the window that preceded sunrise.
He climbed out of bed, dressed only in blue boxers and a loose white t-shirt, glancing across the room at the sleeping figure of his brother bundled up underneath his blankets. Zack had been up late as usual, though Cody couldn't blame him really since it was the weekend. Even Cody had stayed up late the night before playing video games with his twin before calling it quits around midnight when their mother finished reading her book and demanded to have her pull out couch back so she could watch some television before falling asleep. Zack had stayed up with her to watch some late night shows while Cody had turned in.
Taking a few steps in the dim light, Cody suddenly felt pain ripple through his right foot as he stubbed his toe on something lying on the floor. He glanced down as he shifted weight off of his injured foot to stand on one leg and saw the silhouette of Zack's skateboard. Cody hissed in pain, hopped a couple of steps backward and sat down at the end of his bed nursing his big toe. A flash of anger rippled through him, Zack never cleaned his side of the room and constantly left his stuff lying on the floor like that. Deciding to get some petty revenge Cody reached behind him, grabbed one of his pillows and chucked it across the room at his brother.
"Oww, what the…? Zack mumbled groggily as he sat up and squinted around the room before settling his bleary eyed gaze on him. His brother was a light sleeper most of the time and Cody had hit him dead on in the face. The anger he had felt moments ago vanished as he suppressed the urge to laugh at the bewildered expression on Zack's face. It was that dumb 'I just woke up!' look. His hair was all messed up and sticking in front of his face at odd angles which made him look supremely ridiculous.
"Next time don't leave your skateboard in the middle of the floor!" Cody chastised his brother before getting to his feet and hobbling over to the dresser to pull out a fresh change of clothes for the day and lay them out on top of his bed.
"Yeah, yeah," Zack said, deciding not to put up a fight, lying back on his bed and closing his eyes. He wasn't going back to sleep though, that much was evident by how he pulled his legs up closer to his chest and sat up a little bit against his headboard. He just didn't want to get out of bed yet. Cody shook his head at Zack's laziness and then he left their shared room to go into the bathroom for some personal hygiene.
"Morning honey," Carey Martin said sleepily from the kitchen where she was just starting to pull out a carton of eggs and a loaf of bread as she got ready to make breakfast.
"Morning mom," Cody returned the greeting as he went into the bathroom. He stripped off his clothes and stepped into the shower. Cody stayed under the hot spray for much longer than he normally did, feeling unusually grubby today for some reason. All he had done the other day was study with Barbara at the public library, have lunch with her later in the afternoon and then spent some time at home before catching a new action movie with Zack around six.
Eventually Cody finished, dried off and stood at the sink with his towel wrapped around his waist brushing his teeth and then combing his hair. There! Now he was wide awake, clean and ready to start the day. It was just a normal part of his routine for a normal kind of day.
Crossing back through the suite into his bedroom he noticed that Zack had been drawn out of bed by the smell of eggs and toast. He was wearing his skater outfit today, long baggy black shorts and an orange t-shirt, which was a tell tale sign of his plans for the day. Zack was already digging in and Carey was fixing a couple of plates for herself and Cody as well.
Today he was going to go plain Cody thought as he pulled on his loose fitting blue jeans and a black shirt. No vests, turtle necks or collared shirts for him today. He had no plans for the day, which usually meant he'd try to arrange something to do with his friends or just tag along with his brother and do whatever he did. Again, nothing about this day seemed any different than hundreds of other weekends.
He soon found himself seated at the table scooping up forkfuls of scrambled eggs. Carey Martin's cooking was the stuff of legend, the bad kind of legend that is, but breakfast was the one meal of the day that even she had a hard time messing up. Normally they just ate something easy to make for dinner, takeout or had whatever Cody made whenever he felt up to cooking an incredible tasting meal. Even Zack, who had a hard time being polite or thanking people, greatly appreciated the results of Cody's efforts in the kitchen.
"Sup Codes?" Zack inquired between bites of toast as he finished off his plate getting strawberry jelly stuck on the corner of his mouth. He flicked his tongue out to clean it off, earning him a reproving look from their mother.
"Not much, probably going to hang with you at the skate park today."
"You wish you could hang with me," Zack replied with a knowing grin, his competitive streak taking over as he implied that Cody couldn't keep up with him on the ramps.
"Yeah okay," Cody shot back, knowing that he could keep up with his twin easily with all of the practice that he had put in lately. Zack might be better at some of the harder tricks and do some things Cody didn't want to try, but other than that they were dead even. The verbal sparring between the twin brothers was just a normal start to a day that was going to be anything but normal. It was a day that would change Cody Martin's life forever. That was the moment, when the boy's hard stares directed at each other devolved into a fit of shared laughter, when something slammed loudly into the door of their suite making them all jump in surprise.
All eyes turned toward the entrance as the door started to bend inward, the wooden frame around it cracking and splintering. The Martins stood up, Carey reaching out for Cody's cell phone on the kitchen counter, the twins backing away as adrenaline pumped into their systems activating their fight or flight mechanisms. Something told Cody that whoever was on the other side of the door intended to do serious harm to himself and his family.
"Get in your room and lock the door," Carey commanded as she moved to stand between her sons and the front door. The fear in her voice coupled with the firmness of her tone made the twins take a few steps towards their room as she started dialing 911. Then the door came off its hinges and crashed to the floor, admitting the last thing Cody would have ever expected to see in his life into their suite. Demonic creatures flooded into the room, each of them taller and bigger than any of the Martins. Everything from that point forward happened in a blur as he moved and acted so fast that he didn't have time to feel fear or horror.
"CODY!" Zack yelled, snapping him out of his funk. Together the twins raced into their room and locked the door behind them as their mother threw herself into the path of the creatures in order to protect her children and buy them some time to escape. He tried to block out his mother's screams as they both looked around their bedroom, trying to figure out some way to escape or find something to defend themselves with.
"Now what?" Cody demanded aloud as his search of the room came up with nothing promising. Zack was looking around too and then his gaze settled on the wall behind Cody's bed. There was a vent there leading into the ducts that circulated air throughout the hotel. It might just work Cody realized as he sprang forward and worked to get the cover off. The monsters slammed into the bedroom door as he started pulling himself up into the duct and he hesitated in horror…was their mother already dead?
"GO!!!" Zack exclaimed, pushing Cody the rest of the way into the vent. It was a tight squeeze, the twins had gotten bigger over the years and they could now barely fit in the ducts. Zack climbed in behind him as the door to their room flew off its hinges and slammed into the wall narrowly missing Zack's feet which were not all the way in the duct yet. One of the monsters grabbed Zack by the ankle and started dragging him out. He dug into the rivets and separations between each section of duct work with the tips of his fingers holding on for dear life.
"Cody help!" Zack cried. At the four way junction between suites Cody squirmed and squeezed his body around to turn and go back after Zack. He crawled forward until his jeans suddenly snagged on something, a loose screw. He couldn't move forward anymore but he reached out, his fingertips managing to reach Zack's outstretched hand. They held onto each other, both straining to reach out even further. Cody heard his jeans start to tear as the monster pulled Zack backward. No! This wasn't happening!
The monster pulling Zack backwards bit down on the leg that it was holding. His brother screamed out in agony and lost his grip on the duct work. Zack's other hand then slipped out of Cody's and he watched helplessly as the monster dragged Zack out of the duct and threw him to the floor between both beds. Zack rolled sideways, narrowly avoiding the pouncing action of the monster that had been holding him. He kicked that particular monster in the head with his good foot and swung around to punch two more with his bare hands.
Time seemed to slow as Zack lashed out in every direction trying to fight off the monsters. There seemed to be a faint glow of white light surrounding him now as his punches landed with surprising speed and strength, knocking several of the creatures down. It was all in vain though, there were just too many for him to fight off, as one of the monsters knocked him off his feet.
Cody was screaming in the duct, pounding his fists on the metal, doing everything he could to free himself and help fight off the monsters trying to kill his brother. Zack managed to get to his feet and reached the duct, but rather than climb in, he slammed it shut and locked it.
"NO!!!" Cody screamed at his brother as confusion settled in. His mind just couldn't understand why Zack wouldn't try to escape now while he had the chance. Zack stared at Cody through the duct cover, their tear streaked eyes locked gazes as the older twin tried to make the younger twin understand that he loved him very much and was ready to die at any time to protect him if it became necessary. That time had now come, but Cody just couldn't understand it. A selfless act from such a selfish person.
"Remember me…" Zack said sadly before he glanced to his side where one of the monsters he knocked down had recovering and rushing towards him. Zack caught the creature and crashed into the floor with it. He wrestled with it, tried to punch it, bit its flesh, tried kicking out his legs to topple the other monsters in the room and do anything else that he could think of to keep all attention on him to buy his brother time to escape.
After a moment Cody heard his brother's horrible screams of pain. It was the worst thing he had ever heard in his life. It was the last thing he had ever wanted to hear. Zack's screams were abruptly cut off and then all was silent for a moment.
"Don't just stand around!" A man's voice suddenly said, startling a sobbing Cody just enough to halt his progression into breaking down emotionally at the loss of his mother and brother, "There's two of them fools!" The monsters roared inhumanly and tore off the vent cover, reaching in for Cody. He backed away as fear took hold of him and guided him away deeper into the ductwork out of line of sight.
It was a good thing he had moved as fast as he did. There was a flash of reddish pink light reflected by the metallic panels of the duct that almost burned itself into his retina and then everything behind him exploded. He raced forward through the tight confines of the duct towards the vent that was closest to the main stairwell. Cody didn't realize that he too was glowing softly like Zack had been, nor did he care.
Reaching his destination in record time, Cody pushed against the vent cover with all his strength and it popped off surprisingly easy. He pulled himself out quickly, slid down the wall and flipped over as his feet left the duct. Cody landed catlike, flexing his knees to absorb the impact and putting his hands on the ground to steady the landing. The hallway was empty except for a few debris from the busted doorway to Suite 2330 a few rooms down.
Cody rapidly moved into the stairwell and ran down four flights before exiting onto the nineteenth floor and racing over to the elevator. An older man in a black business suit was just getting off, a cup of coffee held in one hand and a briefcase in the other. He must have just come up from the lobby…it must still be safe down there Cody realized as he jumped into the elevator. The man barely had time to give Cody an inquiring look before he jammed the button for the lobby repeatedly and the doors closed.
He fell against the doors of the elevator as it started moving downward, breathing heavily from the exertion of the last few minutes and feeling the sweat pour down his face mingling with tears and snot. Cody's mind was still on escape mode and he found it difficult to think about his slain family, the monsters that had invaded his suite or the man's voice which had spoken to said monsters coming from a location just outside of Cody's line of sight. All he knew now was that he had to get away. His body and mind together demanded that he survive this encounter.
The elevator reached the lobby and opened its doors spilling a desperate Cody out onto the carpet startling several guests and hotel employees. He sprang to his feet and made a run for the front doors. The Tipton's general manager Marion Moseby stepped in his path and grabbed Cody's shoulders. His eyes were alight with bewilderment and concern for the young man. He tried to hide it, but he truly cared about the boys.
"Cody what on Earth…?" Moseby started to ask before he cut the man off.
"Z.. and ma..mom…Th…they're..da…dead…" Cody sobbed through a fit of hiccups, his body shaking violently from fear and his crying. Moseby stared at him, not comprehending how something bad like that could possibly happen in his hotel. It just couldn't happen!
Whatever Moseby did next, Cody wasn't sure if he was trying to comfort him or guide him over to the nearby couch, was met with fierce resistance. Cody's mind believed that Moseby was trying to restrain him and he fought free of the older man's grip. The sound of an inhuman roar could suddenly be heard in the distance. He didn't exactly speak monster, but the meaning was clear. They knew where he was…
"They're coming…" Cody whispered in fear, looking over his shoulder at the stairwell where he'd heard the sound come from. He pushed past a startled Moseby, blew past Norman at the revolving door and hit the street outside of the Tipton running at full speed. He didn't dare look back…
A/N: A - Cool! B - Really Cool! C - Freaking Awesome! D - Whoa! E – Meh!
I tell you readers I was possessed when I wrote this, I love it when I fall into those writing trances where you stop, look up and see all that you have jotted down. This prologue is basically a much more expanded and intense combination of Cody's dreams from "The Chaos Demons" Chapters' 1 and 2. If you're new to the series, fear not! This is how it all began, so hold onto your seats folks. The ride is about to begin!
"Truth Seeker" covers Cody's life in the aftermath of the Demon invasion leading up to "The Chaos Demons" as he discovers his powers and starts to understand just who and what he really is amid the never ending pursuit by the Demons and their masters. It answers many questions I know the readers of my first story have been wondering about. While there is a lot of information provided in this story it is bound to have a few continuity errors in order for me to better tell the tale. Just bear with me folks and enjoy the story!
Thanks for reading. See you in the next Chapter!