Chapter 8: Herobrine

I find myself standing on the roof of my observatory, arms crossed and staring out at the slowly-setting moon and all its pixelated glory. My pig stands beside me, unnervingly still. I keep looking around, trying to find anything out of the ordinary that might be making him be like this, but as the sun is rising behind me and the moon is setting over the sea, I still don't see anything. It may just be me, though, who's paranoid. Probably because of the task at hand?

Would any of the Endermen have wandered into here? I jump off the observatory and land on the roof, taking a half heart of fall damage in the process. Incredulous, at the most. Possible, but very unlikely. Emphasis on very. There are a million and one servers out there, so I have no idea where they would be. Seriously, defeating Herobrine sounds really easy compared to this. But where do I start?

I start to pace on the roof, the hem of my white sundress flaring out behind me in the breeze I was stirring up. Maybe I should just gather some resources from my chests and head off after the nearest Enderman energy signature, but that's more haphazard than I can ever hope to achieve anything with. Although it's the simplest. Maybe . . .

"Any other ideas?" a familiar voice asks, and I jerk my head in the direction of the observatory.

"Hosoi?" I breathe, staring at the Enderman sitting on the edge of the observatory roof. I memorized them all by name, and he is the one who healed me and explained decoding to me all those days ago . . .

"In the flesh, Queenie," he answers, winking at me. I teleport up to him and tackleglomp him, hugging him tightly. "Ohmygoshohmygoshohmygoshohmy goshohmygosh! You're okay! How did you find me? Where is everyone else? Rain, Dark, Kurai, Myst-"

Hosoi clamps a hand over my mouth to keep me from listing the rest of the Endermens' names. I look over at him, letting out a muffled giggle. My happy mode has been activated.

"Should've known you would be this excited," he sighs. I blink questioningly as he raises his hand up, almost as if to signal something. Four more Endermen appear on the roof in a burst of purple pixels, the smallest one holding a spawner in his hands. My breath catches in my throat as I slide off the roof, standing in the middle of the small circle. "Are you . . . all that's left?"

The tallest one, Myst, nods his head sadly. "The skeletons had strength in numbers. We couldn't hold them off for an extended period of time."

"We fled eventually, but they hunted us down afterwards," another one, Dark, reports. His twin, Kurai, nods in agreement, adding, "There weren't many of us left after we fled anyway."

I bite my lip, looking down in shame. "I wish I could've been there to help you all," I whisper. "I wish I could've helped you fend them off . . . there'd be more Endermen left . . . I'm a failure as a queen . . . I'm so sorry . . ." Tears form at the edge of my eyes and I press the heels of my hand into them, trying to hold them back.

The smallest one, Rain, sets down the spawner and walk-glides over to me, putting a reassuring hand on my shoulder. "Shado, you can't know everything that goes on at once. You probably wouldn't have known anyway, you were in the Overworld that day so you couldn't have."

I look over at him, giving him a sad smile. "Thank you," I whisper, turning my attention back to the group. "Thank you all. I can't even begin to express my gratitude for everything you guys have done for me-"

I'm cut off by a sharp gasp, and everyone turns in the direction of the observatory. Hosoi looks down slowly, finally noticing the bloodied diamond sword embedded into his chest the rest of us have seen at least two seconds ago. My eyes widen in horror, fear filling my body as his eyes glaze over quickly. He is pushed off the sword and falls forward, hitting the ground once before despawning. And his attacker stands before us in his place.

What I don't understand is why I never just came back and finished you off, Herobrine mentions in my mind. I've had all the chances in the world to do it. I ask myself that at least ten times a day now.

"How . . . how long have you been following me?" I ask near silently. Everything is so quiet, I can hear the splatter of blood droplets from his sword onto the glass below it. No one dares move.

Ever since you landed in Minecraft, he answers. I have been following you this whole time, watching, learning, waiting for the moment you fall. I have waited too long.

Suddenly, he's in front of me and I'm flung back half a second later, skidding to a halt on the edge of the roof with a long gash down my torso. The Endermen immediately launch into attack, but this only seems to annoy him and he teleports out of the way, stabbing Myst in the back and kicking him off his blade. I cry out as he despawns and lunge, my obsidian sword appearing in my hand as I aim a hard downward slash to his front. He blocks easily, slashing upward and sending me back across the roof. I snarl in pain, teleporting in midair, appearing behind him and aiming to cut him in half. He catches my blade in a split second and puts his hand up to my face. My eyes widen.

I'm blown back and slam against the wall of the observatory, gasping in pain. I can't move and my eyesight is freaking hazy. Herobrine seems to have detained Dark and Kurai, and Rain is back up slowly. He swings his sword one last time.

"N-no!" I choke out, blood flying from my mouth as I teleport in the path of his swing. The attack catches the side of my neck and everything goes black.

Shado is flung sideways from the force of the attack, slamming into a tree not ten blocks away from the house and sliding down its trunk, a large gash present in the side of her neck. Rain freezes in terror, his strange ocean-blue eyes wide. "S-Shado . . ."

Pathetic girl, Herobrine murmured. She never knows her limit. He raises his sword and a beam of some sort of energy shoots directly at Rain, going straight through his body. He coughs once and falls to the ground, fainting as his body starts to dissolve into white pixels. Looking over the blood-soaked battlefield, Herobrine gives a small smirk, lights the house on fire, and teleports away.

I have writer's block now.