AN: I am TERABLY sorry for the delay with this one super-long delay with this one... my life has been kinda crazy... sorry... I hope you all haven't droped out of this! Enjoy the chapter!
…What? Not all of these can be gold. Get off my back!
"HO HO HOOOO!"
These were the cries of battle of a shinobi warrior and a trained assassin. Bang Shishigami and Fukuro exchanged blow after blow with each other, each one determined to prove the other wrong… to decide who the true hero of justice was.
"Justice Hou!" Fukuro threw a punch directly into Bang stomach, launching him across the room. Bang flipped off the wall and threw an exploding nail at Fukuro. Victim of said explosion soared out of the explosion thanks to his jetpack.
"Jet Ho Ho Hou!" Fukuro soared into the sky and then darted right toward Bang.
"Bang's Heavenly Double Palm Thrust!" Bang launched himself with both of his flaming fists chambered behind him. Both warriors' attacks collided violently in the air, sending sparks and flames all over the stone covered room. Both landed on the ground and immediately charged and began to assault one another in a barrage of punches and kicks, not one willing to back down to the other.
-Gray's current location-
"Ice Make: Lance!" Gray shouted. A barrage of lances of ice smashed into the ground. A black sludge slithered across the ground, forming into a giant blob with a white mask. A giant claw made of bone burst from the blob, latched onto Gray's face, and fliped him over, smashing him into the ground, then throwing him into a far wall. Gray slumped off the wall and onto one knee, panting. The blob known as Arakune turned its white mask to face him, eventually turning his entire body.
"Damn it… he was a pushover before…" Gray groaned. "I need to get in close and freeze him… just shooting stuff off at him isn't doing shit… just passes right through him. But if I get close… that god damn claw…!" Gray forced himself up onto his feet. Suddenly Arakune's body morphed into some kind of cannon, aimed at Gray. A deep purple energy formed in the cannon's barrel, launching itself as a massive stream of energy. Gray quickly rolled out of the way, dodging the attack. The blast itself blew straight through the layers of rock of the tower; a hole that lead straight outside was left in the energy's wake. Arakune turned back into his normal form and charged quickly, clawing at Gray. He dodged the fatal part of the attack, but the claws tore open a gash across Gray's chest, drawing blood.
"Ice Make… HAMMER!" In retaliation, Gray formed a massive hammer at least the size of his own body and swung it, the hammer smashing right into Arakune's body, the blob-like mass launched right into the wall across from Gray, Arakune screeching in pain all the way. Arakune splattered upon impact, the sludge-like substance that his is form spreading all over the wall, the white mask falling to the ground. The black sludge dripped and slid off the wall, gathering around the white mask, forming the blob once again. Arakune was mumbling some sort of unintelligible gibberish, looking around the room quickly and furiously. "Blunt attacks do seem to hurt him like Ragna said… but I can take a hit like that to hit him back again… were that anyone else they probably would have been killed… So this guy can take on lethal hits and come back just pissed off." Gray mused, trying to think. "I won't be able to beat him in a match of strength… so maybe..." Gray trailed off, thinking.
"I e… n t nat ral…" (Ice… not natural…) Arakune said. "H w… Is it ade…? How?" (How… is it made…? How?) He said again, obviously confused about Gray's ability to form ice from nothing but air. "T ll Me… Tell!" (Tell me… Tell!) He shouted, charging at Gray. Arakune swung his massive claw down on top of Gray. The Ice wizard grabbed the claw by its wrist with both of his hands, Gray falling to his knee when feeling the force of the impact. Arakune tried to force his arm free from gray's grip, but Gray acted first.
"Ice Make… Freeze!" Almost immediately, ice began to form and travel down Arakune's arm. In a fury, Arakune tied to tug himself free, but being unable to break free from Gray's grip prevented it, the ice had already spread to his body. Slowly, every inch of Arakune's now screaming body was frozen rock solid. Unmoving and lifeless, trapped in the air. Relieved, Gray let go of Arakune's wrist and fell backward, holding himself upright with his hands.
"Oh my god… Gray!" The sound of Lucy's voice caught Gray's attention, as Lucy and Juvia ran over to him quickly.
"Lucy… Juvia… glad you two are safe. Things are getting very strange very fast… and I don't think its part of the game that Jellal person had in mind." Gray responded
"Oh my god… what is that thing!" Lucy screamed, pointing at the frozen Arakune.
"Blob monster, Ragna called it 'Arakune,' it apparently tried to eat him some time ago, before meeting us." Gray answered.
"Are you hurt? How bad is it?" Juvia knelt down to his side, trying to tend to Gray's chest wound.
"It's… ok. Stings a lot." Gray answered. "I kind of wish I had a body like yours… wouldn't have this problem." Juvia's face flushed red, obviously taking Gray's remark as some sort of statement along the lines of 'wanting her body,' and promptly fainted, falling backward. "H-hey! What happened!"
"Mental… image… overload…" Juvia said in a red haze.
"Well… at least everyone is safe…" Lucy sighed.
"For now. At least." A loud voice, unfamiliar to all three came from across the room as the dark room's lights suddenly flickered on, revealing the decorum to be rather detailed and well sculpted… save for the impact marks and the giant hole in the wall. The man before them wore a pink cape, purple shirt, white pants, and a golden mask.
"Just who are you…?" Gray asked, climbing to his feet.
"Relius Clover… and you three can assist me with some things… I hope you don't mind if I borrow you all for a little while…"
A seemingly endless clash of blades. Ikaruga and Ragna's blades met again, over and over, neither one giving an inch of ground.
"God damn it… get the hell out of my way!" Ragna threw off Ikaruga's sword and swung again, meeting her blade once more.
"Feeling impatient? What's the rush?" Ikaruga asks with a smirk, holding off Ragna's blade. The Grim Reaper didn't like this comment; a dark energy quickly began to envelop his body as he threw Ikaruga back again, but didn't follow after with a follow-up.
"Dead SPIKE!" Like many times before, a massive head of the Black Beast burst from the ground with a roar, and soared straight for Ikaruga, teeth bared.
"Oh… scary trick…" Ikaruga swung her blade, and in moments, the dead spike was cut to pierces, before it even reached her. "You're going to have to do better than that, Mr. Bloodedge."
"Carnage Scissors…!" Ragna swung is blade and discharged a massive wave of dark energy, black and red mixed together.
"Garuda Flame!" Fire engulfed her sword and Ikaruga swung, releasing a massive wave of flames to meet the darkness. The two attacks collided and raged, destroying most of the room they occupied. When the attacks faded, they both stood weapons in arms.
"Ok, I'll bite… your one badass little bitch… now get of my way, or you're gonna get hurt." Ragna said.
"Quite to the contrary…" Ikaruga said smirking. Suddenly two gashes appeared on Ragna's shoulders, spewing out blood when they appear, making the Grim Reaper stagger back in shock. "The only one who is going to get hurt here is you." Blood dripped down off Ragna's shoulders as he shifted the blade he wielded to his left hand, and then he raised his right hand, the one with the red shell, the shell facing Ikaruga.
"Don't say I didn't warn you…" The shell opened, revealing its azure core, and then it suddenly turned red, the bright red light engulfing the room as Ikaruga looked on in both confusion… and excitement.
No one in the tower could not notice the loud explosion that followed.
"Oh... that was a loud one… I wonder who was on the receiving end…?" Terumi said, fending off a long broadsword with one of his knives.
"Shut up!" Erza swung another sword in her other hand, and Terumi blocked it with another knife.
"Sorry… try again later." Terumi mocked. Erza repeatedly swinging both of her blades and Terumi repeatedly blocked them. Though Terumi was entirely on the defensive, Erza could not get a single hit on him.
'Something's… not right here.' She thought, keeping up with her own onslaught of slashes. 'He is clearly very powerful, evident because he can block my swords with knives with ease… so why hasn't he tried to attack me yet…?' She pondered, making a horizontal slash. Terumi jumped over the attack quickly and back flipped a few feet, putting a good distance between them both.
"Not bad… not bad at all… well, certainly not at MY level, but you have SOME skill… I can kind of see why good old' rags would be into ya." Terumi said; the grin on his face very visible.
"Keep talking; this is just the start of what I can do." Erza replied. Terumi's grin widened.
"Well then bitch-cakes… lets see what you got!" Terumi lunged quickly, attacking rapidly with his knives. Now Erza was completely on the defensive, Terumi's knife strikes much to fast to counter. At first it seemed even, but small cuts began to appear on Erza's body, marking her armor and drawing blood on her exposed legs. Terumi faked her out, causing Erza to prematurely put up her guard, giving Terumi the time to analyze it and bypass it, kneeing her in the stomach hard. A loud crunch could be heard upon impact and the armor Erza wore shattered, and she herself was launched back against the ground, skidding long it before coming to a forceful stop.
"M-my armor…" Erza sat up, feeling her now absent armor, pieces on the ground.
"Little bit more form-fitting clothing under the hard steel, eh? Wear that more often, you'll like nicer." Terumi said with a snicker.
"Shut up!" Erza shouted; requiping into her Heaven's Wheel armor.
"Oh! I like this one better… nice cleavage shot." Terumi said briefly, before having to block and dodge a massive onslaught of flying blades. Terumi nimbly blocked and dodged the blades, gradually getting closer to Erza. When close enough, Erza slashed downward in an X formation with both of the swords she wielded, but Terumi snuck in close just as she began to swing.
"Serpents Infernal Rapture!" Terumi quickly kicked Erza directly in the jaw line, also discharging some sort of black energy in the same moment, destroying her armor and lunching her up into the air. She fell for a moment before a snake chain bit into her arm. "Hungry Coils…!"Terumi pulled on the chain hard and threw it over-shoulder, the chain following the motion and smashing Erza into the stone floor, cracking it on impact. She coughed up blood at the impact and shortly after, Terumi walked toward her, and kicked her side hard enough to launcher her away and move her onto her back. "Does it hurt… well? Does it!" Terumi asked mockingly, laughing loudly after speaking.
"I… can still…" Erza said, slowly climbing to her feet, hunched over a bit, still reeling from the blows inflicted on her body.
"Oh? What's that? I can't quite hear you…" Terumi asked, grinning.
"I can still fight!" Erza shouted, a flash of light engulfing her again. When it faded, she was in her black spiked armor, Purgatory, holding a giant spiked steel club the same color, her eyes glaring right at Terumi. "No one… has seen this armor and lived…!"
"Well… isn't that something." Terumi stated. "All things considered, this one is my favorite so far! So sure, I can play a little bit more with you." Erza rushed him, heaving her massive weapon on top of Terumi. He blocked with his knives and the force dug his feet into the stone floor. Regardless, he held off the attack with relevant ease, at least it seemed to be. "Ok… you actually have some power to back up your pointless boasting with this one…!"
"Are you still talking…?" Erza brought back her club and quickly swung horizontally into Terumi's side. He blocked, but the force was still enough to launch the green-haired man across the room and into the wall. Erza quickly followed up and shoved the front of her large club into Terumi's body, forcing him through it and out the other side. All that could be seen is darkness. Erza jumped far back away from the wall, eyeing it carefully.
"What's the matter…? Terumi said, stepping out of the wall with a small trickle of blood coming from his forehead. "Come on over… let's play… Eternal Coils of the Dragon Serpent!" Three magic seals burst from a green light on the ground and coiled around Erza, trapping her and forcing her to drop her weapon. One of Terumi's chain-snakes bit down into her shoulder and pulled her toward Terumi, who quickly slashed at her armor with his knives, cutting and breaking pieces off, leaving her in the air for a moment with the force from the rapid barrage of attacks.
"Die die die die die die!" Terumi pulled his arms back and three pitch black snakes with glowing green eyes appeared behind him. He thrust his arms forward and the snakes rammed into Erza's body, shattering the remains of her armor and knocking her to the ground, the force causing her to bounce several times before landing, moaning in pain, on her side. "Lucky little bitch… that attack actually hurt!"
"What's wrong… can't take a hit…?" Erza said, trying to force herself back up to her feet.
"Cheeky." Terumi said back. "Well... can't exactly kill the shit out of you just yet… after all, I need to save that for when good ol' Rags shows up… Doesn't mean I can't just beat you till then though!" He said, laughing afterward.
"No chance…" Erza said. "I got business with Jellal… you're in my way is all. If it wasn't for your connection to Ragna, I wouldn't even be wasting my time dealing with you."
"Just in the way…? You completely missed the fact that 'I'm in complete mother-fucking control, and the big man upstairs doesn't even know it,' didn't you?" Terumi said. "You've been spending too much time with your white-haired boy-toy… you're starting to take after him."
"I don't exactly see how that's a bad thing." Erza replied, fully on her feet.
"My point is don't go getting super-cocky when I just beat your ass up and down this room… only reason you're still alive is because I can use you to torment Ragna. Not like you're required for the soon-to-be main event."
"What do you mean…? I'm supposed to be a sacrifice for this tower… it won't work either way though."
"Yeah I don't think it will either. But, I figured that if it did, I might as well manipulate it to bring shit back to life to tear this world a new asshole. You don't exactly fit the bill to supply power for what I want to use this tower for… oh, but Jellal does though… he would work MUCH better." Terumi grinned.
"You're going to sacrifice him…? What the hell are you bringing back!" Erza demanded.
"The Black Beast." Terumi said simply. Erza looked on in both disbelieve and shock. "You see; the longer this world is allowed to exist, the more vulnerable my ideas become, make sense? Don't want to spend hundreds of years to destroy it so… bring back the Black Beast, and he'll get through it in about three to six months. Best part is I can just sit back and watch!" He laughed loudly into the air.
"You're insane… I heard about the destruction it cause back in yours, and you would scheme to bring it back!"
"You do remember that this doesn't come to pass unless this tower works, right?" Terumi said.
"Even so... I will not let you even think about bringing that beast here!" A flash of light engulfed Erza once again. When it faded, she wielded two long katanas and wore a pair of red hakama, and wore several large pieces of cloth over her chest. Her hair was tied into a ponytail.
"This one is a little kinky… Japanese samurai roll play, eh? Didn't think of you as the multi-cultural type." Terumi said, but this time didn't get any sort of reaction. Terumi frowned; his fun with insults was over. Before he knew it, they were fighting again, Erza swinging her two Katanas wildly and Terumi blocking them. She was much faster than before, sheading the heavy armor was making a real difference, but Terumi was still able to block each strike. This continued until the side of one of Erza's swords slid off Terumi's knife and give the impression of her falling down, but instead quickly rose with the blade in her other hand and thrust it through Terumi's stomach, the blade exiting out his back. Terumi coughed up blood and Erza quickly withdrew her blade and side-stepped, and Terumi fell, a pool of blood developing below him. Erza was breathing heavy, and looking over the body.
"So… that's how easy it is to kill someone…" She said in a low tone.
"Under normal circumstances, yes it would be…!" Terumi's body moved again and picked himself up, the blood that was flowing out seemingly stopped on its own, as Terumi climbed to his feet. "Good thing I'm not quite vulnerable to typical human mortality these days… gonna have to do a lot more to kill me…!"
"Then I'll just keep making holes till you stop getting back up." Erza said back. Her eyes were serious and forceful. Terumi grinned; it was time to put some fear back into those eyes.
"…Back with those old pawns of mine… oh what were they called… Phantom Lord? I do believe Ragna used that right arm of his… BlazBlue, right?" Terumi asked.
"What's it matter to you if he did?" Erza asked back.
"Oh, nothing… just making sure my bugs I put all over the place still work…" Terumi answered. "Say… when he used it… did what he say go like this…? Ahem… Restriction Number 666 released! Dimensional Interference Field Deployed!" despite his crude attempt to imitate Ragna's voice, something was happening. A strange pressure was filling the air… and a powerful dark aura was enveloping Terumi's body.
"H-how… when did you…?" Erza asked in shock, taking a step back.
"Get an Azure Grimoire? Ragna didn't tell you? Well… guess if you had listened to his warning that really wouldn't be an issue right now, would it!" Terumi shot back. "Code SOL! BlazBlue, Activate!" An image of a black snake emitting a green aura with deep green eyes appeared around Terumi, then shortly after faded. The only noticeable physical differences were that they tie on his shirt was loosened, his had had flown off, and his hair had shot straight up, and his snake-like-eyes were wide open. However, his form was surrounded by a green magic-circle extending about a foot from his own body… and he was grinning wide.
"T-that's impossible…!" Erza shouted.
"Oh, it's very possible, and it is happening… well, happened. Me activating the BlazBlue is sort of in the past right now…" Terumi said. "You saw how Rag's kicked the shit out of that old man, right? The one you couldn't even visibly damage? So you should know how much deep shit you are in right now…"
"It… doesn't matter." Erza said hesitantly. "I've run you through once; I can do it again, power-up or no power up!"
"That's nice… I don't care but that's really nice…" Terumi said back with a chuckle. "Oh and to answer your question of how I got an Azure Grimoire… The one who made BlazBlue… WAS ME!" He said, a loud hectic laughter coming from his grinning face.
Fear is the human race's greatest sense of danger.
But action upon fear will reveal one's true nature.