The Circus Master: An Eye For An Eye: Part 5: Death of a Planet

 

“You fool if you don’t let me go now, we’re all dead.” The Hylexan commander shouted at Florence.

“She knew he was right, but at the same time if she released him she and Keptis would most surely die. Maybe it was better to take the monsters down with her than let Keptis suffer in the pit?

The ship started to rock back and forth as the monsters attacked it.

“Release the prisoners from the pit and I’ll release you” Florence said more firmly.

Knowing he was out of options, the Hylexan commander was forced to agree.

“Release the Quilex’s and the strange green alien for now.”

The Hylexan soldiers however refused.

“You heard what I said. Release them now!”

“We cannot obey commander. A Hylexan commander must never give in to enemies demands. You have forefieted your right to command.”

The Hylexans magic was linked to how obdient they were. If any Hylexan disobeyed their superior’s orders, then their own magic would destroy them. The Hylexan commander knew this of course, but was finally willing to sacrifice his life in order to pass on his command to another member of the crew afer some hesitation.

The red Hylexan’s skin started to turn black as the magic of the vessel upgraded the red Hylexan to the rank of commander, whilst another blue Hylexan’s skin turned red as it was upgraded to the rank of second in command.

The black Hylexan in the Circus meanwhile screamed as it began to vanish into a puff of green smoke.

“DESTROY THOSE MONSTERS” The new Hylexan commander shouted as magics fired from the flaming craft into the giant ravenous Lystergia’s outside. One of the beasts exploded completely whilst the others began to scatter. As the Hylexan commander prepared to fire another missile however, he suddenly saw something else come into view. It was a gigantic flying, glowing city!

“Incredible. I can’t believe the Quilax’s have created such a thing!” The Commander said.

“You are not allowed to praise our enemies” The second in command said or rather thought angrily.

“I apologise. The city may look striking, but it will easily crumble before our weapons.”

“It doesn’t even look striking” the second in command said bitterly.

Florence meanwhile searched frantically through the weapons chest to try and find a weapon that could hurt the monsters. Unfortunately almost all of the magic on board the tent had mysteriously vanished? Florence felt that it had to be the work of the Hylexans, but how? “How could those freaks drain our magics? If they can do that, why not just come in and get me now?”

Whilst Florence was searching for a suitable weapon, the Strange Boy grew impatiant and hopped out of the tent. Florence didn’t even notice at first, and neither did the Hylexans. The Strange Boy jumped out of the tent and onto the back of the new Hylexan commander.

Before the octopus like creature could respond, the Strange Boy dug his talons into both sides of the monsters amoprhous body and pulled with all its strength, ripping the Hylexan in half down the middle. Without the commander the ship began to spiral out of control.

The second in command’s skin started to turn black. The ships had to be powered by a being of incredible magical power, the commander. Only the strongest members of the Hylexans could become the commanders however.

There would always be a few back ups on each vessel, but if the Strange Boy could kill them all then the vessel would crash. The Strange Boy quickly grabbed the red Hylexan as it was in the process of changing’s tentacles and pulled it towards him, impaling the octopoid on his hand.

Two more Hylexan soldiers wrapped their tentacles around the Strange Boy and started to dig their tentacles under his skin and shock him. The Strange Boy tried to fight through the pain. He was by far the strongest member of the Circus Folk physically, but as more and more tentacles poked their way under his skin; the Vampire child was unable to even move.

Florence having heared the Hylexan’s cries when they were slaughtered by the Strange Boy struck both of the Hylexan’s attacking the Vampire with an axe. The axe was not magical and so it only produced a minor wound on both monsters which quickly healed, but it was enough to distract them long enough for the Strange Boy to escape the beasts tentacles.

The Strange Boy then jumped onto the new commander who was in the process of changing. This commander however managed to run several of his tentacles through the Strange Boy’s chest. The Vampire and the Alien wrestled with each other, whilst Florence distracted the guards. She spent most of her time simply dodging their attacks and occasionally striking at their tentacles with her axe. Each time she sliced a part of them off however, the tentacle would simply grow back.

Whilst the two Vampires held off the Hylexan’s, over in the city; the Circus Master prepared a weapon to use against the alien invaders. The Lystergias meanwhile had been commanded by the Quilax to hold off the approaching Hylexan army from behind.

The giant monsters didn’t last long. Whilst they were capable of breaching the Hylexan’s defences they were vastly outnumbered. In under a minute the Lystergia’s were whittled down to just one by the Hylexan army. The final Lystergia was only able to distract the Octopoids rather than fight them.

With Denika’s help the Circus Master began to cobble together some of the magics from the city itself. He was forced to make a weapons building disappear in the process. Some of the soldiers complained about losing one of their buildings, but the Circus Master assured them that all of the weapons in the building combined couldn’t take down one Hylexan vessel.

“It took us ages to build that. It was our main defence centre. You better know what you’re doing” the angry general said.

“I’ve only known them a short while, but trust me they do” Carlene replied.

The Circus Master and Denika constructed the gun in a matter of minutes through various enchantments. The Circus Master seemed to do most of the work. Whilst he may not have been as skilled as Denika at magic. In some ways the Circus Master’s knowledge of magic eclipsed hers in certain areas.

“There that finally seems to be it. Denika, you just be ready to catch it when it falls.” The Circus Master said as he aimed the glowing, red cannon.

“Care to fill us in?” Ashlei asked.

“I’ve cobbled this weapon together from spare magics in this city and some spare magics from Denika. It won’t be able to destroy the vessel up ahead, but if I’m correct then we might be able to shut down all of the magics in the ship, reducing it to just a hollowed out metal shell. Denika will have to catch it afterwards if we are to get our ship back.”

“How good a chance do you give us?” Ashlei asked. The Circus Master didnt respond and simply fired the canon. The Hylexan’s ship began to spin out of control. Inside the floor began to vanish, as did all of the equipment.

The Hylexan commander managed to throw the Strange Boy across the room as the Vampire was distracted by the ship rocking. The commander then took control of the ships remaining weapons and fired them at the city.

Denika was barely able to block the blast with her magic and doing so threw her 20 feet from the edge of the city.

Fortunately Carlene managed to catch her in time, but Denika was knocked out cold.

“What are you waiting for?” One of the Quilax commanders shouted as the Circus Master.

“I can’t fire. Denika can’t catch it in our current state. We’ll lose the ship.”

“If you don’t fire it will destroy us”

“Yes but if I knock them out of the sky, my ship will be destroyed and this city which draws energy from it will fall out of the sky.”

The Circus Master ran towards Denika and tried to help Carlene rouse her, but again it was no use.

The last surviving Lystergia attacked the Hylexan vessel Florence, the Strange Boy and Keptis were locked in. Due to their magical nature the monsters could sense when their Quilaxen commanders were in danger. Whilst the Lystergian distracted the Hylexans, Carlene and the Circus Master were finally able to wake Denika.

“Finally. Great time to blank out on us Denika.” The Circus Master said angrily.

“Sorry I only got hit in the face by a giant magical death ray!” Denika replied.

The Hylexan fleet quickly vaporised the Lystergia from behind. The Quilax watching from the city all bowed their heads in respect. The Lystergia had been the last of its kind. Their race had existed for millions of years before even the Quilax themselves. The Lystergia had always been seen as symbols of great power and beauty among their people and were even worshipped as gods by the Quilax’s early ancestors. Now if the last of the Quilax survived, none of their descendants would ever set eyes on one of these beautiful creatures. Nevertheless the creatures sacrifice had bought the Circus Master enough time to blast the Hylexan vessel containing Florence and the others with his cannon, completely destroying the magic of the ship.

Denika managed to catch the empty metal shell the ship became in a magical tractor beam. It was an incredible strain for the Witch just to hold it in place however.

As the Hylexan fleet drew closer, the Circus Master started firing at them. He managed to bring down dozens more ships, but the Hylexans also managed to fire several shots at the city too. They destroyed dozens of buildings, killed hundreds of Quilax civilians, and caused the back section of the city to collapse.

Carlene and Ashlei ran to the areas that had been hit to try and help any survivors, but there was only a handful of survivors.

Inside the Hylexan vessel containing the Circus meanwhile the dark matter dungeon vanished and all of the Quilax, the Hylexans, the Circus as well as Keptis were thrown together inside a small metal room that could barely contain them.

The Quilax instantly started to attack the Hylexans but they were easily overpowered and ripped to pieces. Keptis meanwhile overcome with rage grabbed his flaming saw and stabbed it into the Hylexan commander from behind whilst it was distracted by the Quilax, before slicing it straight down the middle.

Whilst they were fighting, Florence quickly ran back into the Tent to search for more weapons. She managed to find a few of Carlene’s spare gas bombs which she used to scatter the Hylexans. Florence’s Vampire senses allowed her to see through the gas and she quickly snatched Keptis, the Strange Boy and the three remaining Quilax back into the Tent.

“I’m glad I got the commander at least.” Keptis said.

“Actually that was a different commander, but he deserved it anyway.” Florence said as she piloted the ship. Florence thought about the Circus Master as she threw the coins into the main fountain hoping it would take her to him. She didn’t know what situation he was in, but she felt she had to find the rest of the team to warn them about the Hylexans.

In a flash the Circus vanished in a puff of smoke and appeared at the every edge of the city in front of Denika, the Circus Master and the crowd of Quilax.

“Thank god” Denika said as she let the Hylexan vessel fall thousands of feet to the ground. She couldn’t take the strain of holding it up much longer.

Florence, The Strange Boy, Keptis and the Quilax soon emerged from the tent. The two surviving Quilax’s families quickly ran to them.

“Glad to see you made it from those vengeful Octopus'” The Circus Master said cheerfully, though Keptis was in no mood for his humour.

“Can one of you be a dear and hold off the fleet for a bit. I need to check inside.” The Circus Master continued.

Keptis grabbed the Cannon. “After what I went through in that pit I want to take down as many of these monsters as I can.” He said bitterly.

The Circus Master searched through the Circus. So much of it had vanished and been reduced to nothing but bland stone. Fortunately the city would not drain the vessel completely. Its power created by the Vandals and modified by both Professor Fang and The Circus Master himself was constantly able to renew itself. At the same time however as more and more of the ship was drained then its defences and most of its kitchen and its toilet (both kept below the living room.)

“I spent so long decorating this place” the Circus Master mused to himself as he looked at the engine of his beloved vessel, the fountain. The Circus Master began to chant over the fountain. He hoped to infect it with an invisibility spell. He and Denika had collected some invisibility spells on their travels, which were now being drained. Invisibility spells could only work on one person at a time. They also weren’t full proof. Vampires for instance could still trace people by scent, whilst other Demons and even magical creatures could sense the magic used to create the invisibility. In some cases it could ironically make things worse!

Still it was the city’s best chance of escape. There is no way, even with the Circus Masters weapon they could fight the Hylexan fleet off, and they couldn’t outrun them too.

The Circus Master hoped that as the city was drawing from the Circus for power that if he could make the Circus invisible, then the spell would spread out over the entire city. The Vandal just had to find a way to stop the remaining invisibility spells from being converted into the magic for the city.

Outside Keptis fired at the Hylexans with rage taking down dozens more of their vessels. Florence had never seen him overcome with such anger. “My god I think he hates these things more than Vampires.” She thought to herself.

The Hylexans rained down more lasers and magical blasts on the city, killing hundreds. Carlene and Ashlei frantically ran around the city to try and help the fleeing Quilax, but there was really nothing they could do.

The Strange Boy meanwhile simply stood there watching the chaos, completely disinterested. He only seemed to enjoy helping if there was a chance for him to fight. Otherwise he was completely dead to everything around him.

Keptis was so busy attacking the Hylexans that he didn’t care about the civillians either. Florence was forced to push him out of the way of one of the Hylexan’s rays just in time, but in the process he dropped the cannon that was completely destroyed by the Hylexans rays.

“You stupid Vampire”. He screamed. Florence was worried. As miserable and moody as Keptis always was, she’d never seen the Martian quite like this. What had those slimy Octopuses down to him?

Some of the Hylexan vessels began to hover over the city. Clearly they were getting ready for a landing to scoop up whatever Quilaxans they could for their twisted master. Just as they were on the verge of victory however, to the Hylexan’s shock the city suddenly vanished. The Circus Masters spell had worked!

“Denika get us out of here now” The Vandal shouted as he ran from the tent. Denika was able to pilot the ship out into the sky and into the planets atmosphere, evading all of the Hylexan war ships along the way.

Within a few minutes the surviving Quilax were able to look down on their planet from the stars. Unfortunately the Circus Folk could not use the Circus Tent to help the Quilax escape. As it was so linked to the city’s core, if they were to use it to escape the city would break apart. Not all of the Quilax would be able to fit in the tent for one journey either.

Hundreds of the Quilax had escaped, but sadly up to half of the city’s entire population had been slaughtered in the bombardment. Carlene, Ashlei, the Circus Master and Florence tried to help the few survivors whilst Keptis just sat at the edge of the city.

Florence was the most concerned about him. In spite of their differences she knew Keptis better than anyone else and could see the Martian was practically a broken man. Sadly she didn’t have time to help him now as there were dozens of Quillax still lying under the rubble.

Suddenly however the entire city’s attention was drawn back to the Quillax’s homeworld. In the distance the planet began to burn in a blaze of magical fire.

The Hylexans knew that somehow the Quillax city had escaped the planet. Their vessel could pick up faint traces of the city’s magic in space, though they couldn’t place its exact location.

Still they knew that several of the Quilax were in space and so they had no need for their planet anymore. They were more than capable of destroying it before now. They only didn’t because they wanted the last of the Quilax to hand over to their leader. Thus the Hylexans finally ordered the planets destruction.

It only took a few minutes for the Hylexan’s dark magics to burn the planet into nothing. The Quilax knew their world was beyond saving. Still to see it go shocked them all. Even the Circus Folk with everything they had seen had to look away at the planets final few moments.

“An entire world. Gone in a flash. Even at our worst we were never capable of such senseless destruction. We truly are the only survivors now” the Quilax commander said as he bowed his head.

“I’m sorry commander. No one should have to see their world end like that. Still this does not need to be the end of your people. Your world can live on through all of you.” The Circus Master said.

The soldier composed himself. “You are right strange alien. Thank you. Thank all of you” He said to the Circus Folk. “We have to do all we can to help the civillians now. We can’t let this all be for nothiing.”

To Be Continued

 

 

 

 

 

The Circus Master: An Eye For An Eye: Part 3: The Flying City

 

(I didn’t think I’d get this finished over my holiday. Doctor Who and Professor Fang will still be delayed, but for now enjoy the next part of The Circus Master.)

Ashlei, Denika, Carlene and the Circus Master were led through the city. None of the other golden aliens took note of the strange travellers. They were too busy working. The city looked every bit as beautiful as it did in the vision.

The buildings were large and appeared to glow blue. They were clearly built from magic as their design appeared to change every few minutes. Everyone it seemed was working to constantly maintain the city in some way, even just through chants.

“Fascinating” The Circus Master said aloud. “An entire city made of magic, though from the way you’re all scrambling about you don’t seem to be experts? Maybe we can help you. My friend here is quite the.”

One of the aliens hit the Vandal over the head knocking him down. Carlene went to help the Circus Master up, but whilst she was reaching down he quickly reached into her hair and pulled out a gas bomb which he threw at the aliens.

Whilst they were distracted, Carlene grabbed Ashlei whilst the Circus Master grabbed the weakened Denika who he tried to rouse.

“Come on Denika we need you.” The Circus Master said frantically as the smoke began to clear.

One of the aliens fired at Denika, but the Circus Master quickly spun her round and took the blast in his back instead.

“We have to go now.” Carlene shouted as she jumped over 30 feet in the air to the top of a nearby building with Ashlei in tow. The Circus Master soon followed, but when they reached the top of the building its roof began to envelope the time travellers and pull them inside.

The Circus Master tried to claw at it, but each cut he made quickly healed over. “I guess they’re less primitive than I thought. I’d admire them if they weren’t about to kill me” The Circus Master said as he struggled against the living building! Using all of her strength Carlene pulled one arm free and reached for a weapon in her beehive. A flaming knife! She slashed at the substance that had trapped her, causing it to retreat and quickly freed the Circus Master and the others. They tried to flee in the opposite direction, but three large yellow crafts arrived that way; forcing the Vampire and the Vandal to jump ahead over the soldiers and into a busy area of the city.

None of the workers looked up. They still carried on with their business as if nothing had happened. Whatever it was they workers where doing it was far more important to them than their lives!

More and more soldiers came pouring in from all parts of the city firing energy beams at the strange time travellers. Carlene used her flaming knife to bat away the floor of the city as it continued to attempt to engulf the time travellers, whilst the Circus Master attacked the aliens. The Circus Master was able to dodge their rays thanks to his Vandal reflexes. Not that he needed to. The aliens rays were not capable of killing the Vandal. They were only capable of causing minor wounds that quickly healed over.

The Circus Master effortlessly overpowered the hordes of attacking aliens. He tossed them through the air, clawed their weapons in half, and knocked several of the golden aliens out with quick strikes to the face.

However the more and more aliens piled on the Circus Master the harder he found it to fight them off. One of the aliens managed to get a lucky blast in at the Circus Masters knee cap, temporarily shattering it. The wound quickly healed over, but for a few seconds the Circus Master was crippled and another of the aliens struck the Vandal from behind with the butt of his gun. Whilst the Circus Master was on the floor the aliens started to shoot at him. The overwhelming force from so many lasers began to severly weaken the Circus Master to the point where he couldn’t get up.

Carlene quickly ran to help the Circus Master, but the floor itself grabbed her foot. As she reached down with her knife to cut it, the floor grabbed both of her arms causing Carlene to drop the knife. Ashlei however quickly grabbed the knife and used it to cut the floor holding Carlene down as well as the floor around her foot.

Denika started to stand up, though she still stumbled slightly. Carlene ran to help her, but the floor between Denika and Carlene and Ashlei rose up into a mass over 20 feet high. Carlene and Ashlei stood their ground, with Ashlei holding her knife up.

Suddenly the mass sideswerved Carlene and Ashlei and grabbed the Aliens attacking the Circus Master, enveloping them up to their heads. Denika having regained her strength had managed to quickly take control of the city’s defence system.

“Come on lets go out of here” Denika said as she flew into the sky, with a forcefield protecting her from the aliens rays. The Circus Master and Carlene, carrying Ashlei followed the Witch. Denika used the floor to trap more soldiers before they could pursue the time travellers.

“How can those beasts harm our vessels.” The Hylexan commander said or rather thought in anger as they lost contact with another vessel.

“They were created from our magics sir. The Quilax are appropriating our power because they have none of their own, but we shall destroy them.” The red Hylexan second in command said as it prepared to fire the weapons. Suddenly however another two beasts emerged from either side of the Hylexan craft.

This ship belonged to a small platoon of Hylexans who were exploring the underground for any survivors. All 4 vessels however had been attacked by the Quilax’s pet monsters. Giant snake like creatures called the Lystergias. The Lystergias had originally been just simple underground beasts, but the Hylexans magical blasts on the planet had mutated them into growing larger and more powerful. Whilst the dark magics had destroyed most life on the planet, the Lystergias were able to survive because they were deep underground. The magics still affected the Lystergias however. It not only made them larger, but more violent as well.

The Quilax had been able to tame the Lystergia’s with their magics. Powerful though they were, they were just simple beasts and so their minds were easy to control.

The Hylexan crafts had still disposed of most of the monsters, but there had been so many Lystergia’s that the giants had been able to overwhelm and destroy all but one of the invaders crafts. The final three Lystergia’s cornered the last of the Hylexans craft from all sides.

“We are completely surrounded commander.”

The leader of the vessel in desperation ordered that the ships reserve of dark magics be emptied. The dark magics were stationed right at the centre of each Hylexan vessel. They were used to create torture bubbles. Anyone who was placed in the bubble would be forced to live out their worst fears and regrets over and over.

“Sir emptying the dark magics is dangerous. They could flood this entire area and we’d all be trapped.”

“I’m aware of the risk but I’d rather our own magics destroyed us than we end up as the victims of the Quilax’s pet.”

The others agreed. As terrified as they were of the dark magics, defeat at the hands of any Quilax was considered the most undignified death for the Hylexans.

The second in command released the dark magics which caused the ship to spiral out of control and be thrust straight into one of the Lystergians. The beast quickly sunk its magical teeth through the firey hull of the vessel. The dark magic however started to affect the three monsters. They all began to scream and hiss and even cower from the sight of the ship, which took on the form of whatever they had feared most in life.

The Hylexans flew passed the three tormented giants and once they were a safe distance they fired on them one at a time. None of the monsters retaliated when the other was destroyed, as the pain from the dark magics crippled them.

“That seems to be the last of them. To think after all their weapons and inventions, the Quilax main line of defence for their last city was nothing more than a few simple beasts.” The red Hylexan said.

“Their last city is just a few miles below. The Quilax scum thought they would be safe in this pit? Desperation can often breed stupidity.” The leader of the craft sneered as he prepared to lead his men to exterminate the last of their most hated enemies.

The 4 time travellers continued to fight their way through the strange golden aliens. They all made sure that their blows were not lethal, as ironcially they were here to help them. If only they could convince the aliens that they weren’t their enemies.

As more and more aliens started to emerge the Circus folk were again forced to retreat. Denika flew, whilst Carlene and the Circus Master jumpedover 80 feet through the air (with Carlene carrying Ashlei.) Above dozens of soldiers. When Carlene and the Circus Master landed however, the ground instantly opened, creating a massive pit that all 3 fell into. Before the Vampire and the Vandal could even try and leap out. The ground then sealed itself over again.

Denika flew towards the floor to try and open it with her magics, but whilst she was busy the aliens shot her. It was only the stun stting as they wanted to question her along with the others.

Carlene, Ashlei and The Circus Master were brought up to face the soldiers, all encased up to their heads in the floor.

“Good now maybe we can talk properly.” The Circus Master said sarcastically. The aliens raised their guns in response, but within a few seconds an alarm started to ring throughout the city. All of the aliens who had remained completely calm throughout the Circus Masters fight started to run and panic. Most of the soldiers started to scatter too.

“Please” The Circus Master said to the general.

“We are here to help you. In fact we might be your last hope.” The general didn’t listen however and in his anger set his weapon to kill.

“You did this”. He said. “I don’t know how, but you led those disgusting things to us. I’ll kill you all.” Suddenly however the general was hoisted over 40 feet through the air, whilst the floor englufing Carlene, Ashlei and the Circus Master vanished. The stun gun had only worked on Denika for a few seconds due to her magical constitution.

The few remaining soldiers gathered round the time travellers, aiming their guns.

“Look we really don’t have time for this. I swear we are here to help you.” The Circus Master said firmly. As a show of good faith Denika lowered the general back to the ground.

“Why should we trust you?” The general said.

“You don’t, but the way I see it you’re dead if we don’t help you and if we are working for those things then you’re still all dead. So what do you have to lose?” Carlene said.

“I suppose.” the general reluctantly agreed as did his men who began to lower their weapons. “I swear though if we die I’ll make you sure you do too.”

“Fair enough” the Circus Master said.

“What do you mean fair enough? That’s not fair? I don’t agree with that.” Ashlei said.

“You’re wasting time.” The general replied.

“Well I’m afraid that if we are going to help you we need to know what’s going on exactly.” The Circus Master said.

“You really don’t know?”

“No like I said earlier we’re just travellers. We know that there are hideous octopus monsters that want to kill you, but other than that?”

“Our people have been involved in a war for decades with an enemy more evil than you can imagine. We were more advanced than those savages. They were nothing but simple beasts until we found them and elevated their pitiful existence.”

“Why do they want to destroy you then?” The Circus Master replied.

“They want to wipe us our because just a few decades ago we were the monsters.” A young female alien civilian from the behind the time travellers said. “We once conquered this entire galaxy, including the planet of our enemies, The Hylexans. We exploited them. We butchered them.”

The General interupted. “We brought order to this galaxy! We elevated their cultures more in 10 years than they would have in 100.” He shouted.

“Is that why they were all too happy to sit back and let the Hylexans slaughter us.”

“They were just scared. Scared to stand against those monsters and their unnatural powers.”

“I’m not interested in your politics. Please tell me about these Hylexans.” The Circus Master interrupted.

“The Hylexans were able to overcome our armies because they learned magic. Something we had always dismissed as a superstition. They’ve slaughtered all of our colonies and bombarded our planet with dark magics. The last of us fled underground. Just before the surface of our planet was destroyed we had only learned how to master the most basic magics that we used to build this city.” The female alien said.

“I wouldn’t call building a city basic.” Ashlei replied.

“This city is extremely unstable. We have to constantly maintain it with enchantments or it will fade away within an hour. Our plan was to use the city to fly to another world. Our planet is dead and we knew it wouldn’t be long before the Hylexans found us. We wanted to leave this entire galaxy.” The female alien said.

“It doesn’t matter now.” The General interrupted. “They’ve found us. Our race is doomed.”

“Not necessarily” Denika said.

“You might be amateurs but not to toot my horn, I know a fair bit about magic. If you’ll just let me look at core of this city. I assume there is a core to draw all of the magics from your planet into the city?”

“Yes”. The female alien replied. “Sadly there aren’t enough magics left in this world to make it fly. The Hylexans blitzed the surface of our world, turning most of the magics of the planet into dark magic. The little that was left was used to create the city. We’ve tried to find a way to harness it to make the city fly, but well each time it just causes a part of the city to vanish.”

“I can’t promise anything but if I inject my magics into the core it just might be enough to get it to fly.”

“What about the Hylexans? They’ve breached our defences. Even if it does take off now they’ll slaughter us all before we reach the sky.” The General responded.

“Don’t worry we’ll deal with them, you just help Denika get this city off the ground.” The Circus Master said.

“We will? How?” Ashlei asked.

“I don’t know yet, but either we try and maybe win, or we just stand here and get fried.”

“Well when you put it like that.”

The Hylexan craft flew over the city whose buildings all changed in response to gigantic war fortresses with massive ray guns mounted on the roof tops.

All of the soldiers gathered in front of the fleeing civilians firing at the flaming ship. Neither the fortress’ nor the soldiers weapons were able to even dent the Hylexan’s ship. The Hylexans wanted to savour this moment. It wasn’t even just because of their hatred for the Quilax. All the Hylexans had known for the past several decades was hunting the Quilax. Now that they were almost at the end of their war, they wanted to make their final victory last as long as possible.

The Hylexans fired their magical blasts at the civilians first. They wanted to save the soldiers for last so they would see the full extent of their failures to save the people they had pledged to protect.

In the middle of the fleeing crowd, Carlene, The Circus Master and Ashlei stood almost completely helpless to stop the chaos ahead. Carlene reached through her beehive for a weapon, but the vehicle soon spotted the time travellers and began to focus its efforts on them.

To Be Continued

 

 

The Circus Master: An Eye For An Eye: Part 2: The Hylexans

 

(All three series will be taking a break next week as I will be off on holiday. There will be a few more articles that I managed to get finished posted in the meantime.)

Florence, Keptis and The Strange Boy had been walking for hours through the hot, dark wasteland and had found nothing but charred corpses.

“I need to rest” Keptis said. “My feet are burning.” Florence stopped to give the Martian a minute whilst the Strange Boy just hopped on both feet up ahead over a nearby hill.

“That blasted boy.” Florence said. “He never does what you want him too.”

“Well fr be it for me to stick up for a Vampire, but children were the same back on Mars.” Keptis said. “It seems to be a universal trait for kids to be unruly.”

“Not where I came from.” Florence protested. “Children were always taught to have proper manners.”

“Yes but you also sent them off to work in dangerous factories at the age of 6.” Keptis replied.

“Well at least we had a good work ethic. Besides I never had to work.”

“I’m not too surprised to hear that.” The Martian teased

“Well whatever the reason I suppose we better check on him. Not for his sake. He’s stronger than us and we better not lose him.” Florence replied.

Florence and Keptis headed over the hill ahead only to be greeted by the sight of the ruins of a gigantic city.

In the distance the Strange Boy was hopping towards the ruins and the Martian and the Siren were quick to follow, but deep in the rubble the Strange Boy appeared to be following the scent of something.

Around the corner of the a nearby building lay a wounded octopus like creature. Similar to the monsters they had seen in the vision.

The creature was bleeding a thick blue blood from one side of its body, whilst its tentacles were limp and twitching.

The Strange Boy stood simply staring at the creature whilst Florence tried to establish some kind of communication with the strange alien. Keptis meanwhile fired up his flaming chainsaw just in case.

Florence knew the creature was an invader, but in its weakened state it clearly wasn’t a threat to anyone.

“Please let us help you.” Florence said gently to the alien.

“Help it?” Keptis said in shock.

“We have to find out what they are here for. Florence whispered back.”

The alien however didn’t appear to believe Florence. It didn’t respond to her and simply tried in vain to lift one of its tentacles.

Just then the Special Boy darted around the corner.

“What now” Keptis moaned.

As Florence and Keptis prepared to follow the Strange Boy, they suddenly heard a strange voice in their heads. It was the alien. It was communicating through telepathy. Its voice was a strange, high pitched, hissing voice.

“The monster that attacked me is nearby. You will share my fate.”

The two time travellers quickly ran after the Strange Boy only to see a gigantic creature standing over the small Vampire, who still showed no emotion whatsoever.

The monster had four legs, but an upright upper torso. Its four legs were sprawled like a Lizards, whilst each of its feet ended in three clawed toes like a bird. The creatures lower body was long and thin and covered in long sharp spikes. Its upper body meanwhile was in the shape of a man, though its skin looked slimy and rotting. Each of its hands had three short, squat fingers, whilst it had a scaly mane around its head that had a truly hideous face with massive fangs protuding from its mouth.

The monster’s body had been twisted by all of the magics the aliens had bombarded the planet with. It was in the most unimaginable pain for every second of its wretched existence.

The Strange Boy quickly dodged the monsters attempt to step on him and jumped towards one of its back legs, pulling the monster off its feet. He then jumped on top of its head and pushed it’s face into the burning hot earth. The monster screamed and tried to pull itself up but the boy managed to hold its face down for a few seconds before it sent the boy flying through the air. Keptis used his flaming saw to try and ward the beast back, whilst Florence went to try and check on the Boy.

The monster however was faster than it looked and managed to grab Keptis in its short, clawed hands. Florence in response jumped at the monsters throat and bit into it. The beast managed to shake both of them off and stamped on Florence, trampling her into the hot earth. The Strange Boy in response quickly jumped on the monsters back. Completely undeterred by the spikes, the Strange tore one spike off and then stabbed it into the monsters throat. With its last ounce of strength the monster threw the small Vampire away before stumbling into the ruins of small nearby building.

Florence ran towards the creature whilst Keptis checked on the small boy. As dangerous as it looked, Florence pitied the creature. It wasn’t violent naturally. In fact it was actually a gentle herbivore, but the magics and the pain had made it insane and violent.

After the creature’s life ebbed away Florence, Keptis and the Strange Boy returned to the wounded alien, but it was gone!

“It can’t have gone far” Florence said as she tried to pick up its scent. Suddenly the Strange Boy pointed to something in the sky. Florence and Keptis looked up to see a massive flaming vessel heading towards them in the distance. It hadn’t made a single sound as it tore through the sky.

The three time travellers all ran as fast as they could with Florence grabbing Keptis (as she could run a lot fast than he.)

A green light quickly engulfed all three of them and in a flash they all suddenly found themselves pulled into a white room. Unlike Denika they didn’t have the magics

“What happened? Where are we?” Keptis said as he raised his burning saw defiantly.

A large red octopoid creature descended from above. Its body was much larger than the wounded alien. The Strange Boy tried to attack the creature, but one of the many tentacles that writhed around its amorphous form instantly batted the small Vampire across the room.

“You are not of their race.” The red creature said, or rathet thought as it communicated through telepathy like its minions. Evidently the Octopoids could only send their thoughts into others heads rather than read them.

“We’re just travellers you know passing through.” Florence said nervously.

“No travellers would come here. To the world of the most hated race in the cosmos. You were created by them? Weren’t you? The Quilax? They created you from their crude magics.”

The octopoid struck its tentacle through Florence’s chest. The pain brought the Siren to her knees but she did not die from her wound.

“Just as I thought. You’re not real.”

The monster attempted to do the same to Keptis but as soon as the tentacle pierced his skin the Martian fell to the floor in agony and the Octopoid could sense he was real.

“Interesting.” It said. “You are real, but you are not of this galaxy?” The monster started to dig its tentacle deeper into the Martian’s chest. “You are not like anything I have ever seen before. I wonder what how your organs are arranged.”

Florence quickly pulled on the tentacle in her chest and dragged the Ocotopoid towards her. She tried to strike it with her other arm, but the monster wrapped its tentacle around her arm and squeezed, almost breaking it.

The Strange Boy however jumped the Octopoid whilst it was distracted with the Martian and the Siren. He sunk his fangs and claws into the monsters flesh, causing its tentacles to flail around. Several of them wrapped around the Strange Boy and tried to pull him off, but the Vampire bit and gripped hard. Keptis quickly swung his saw at the tentacled beast and managed to saw several of its tentacles off, whilst Florence was able to jump the creature. The two Vampires held the red beast down and Keptis raised his flaming saw. Several more tentacles from above however descended and wrapped themselves around the three time travellers. There were several more blue Octopoid creatures from above, though it took two of them to pry the Strange Boy off of their red commander.

A black Octopoid emerged in the centre of the creatures.

“Interesting. These creatures are quite unlike anything in this solar system. To think you said you could handle them.” The black creature said to his wounded red commander. In the distance, Florence could see the wounded alien that had drawn them into the city in the first place. It was being healed by a flash of blue light by one of the others.

“Tell us how and why did you come here.” The leader barked at the three captives only to be met with silence.

The tentacles wrapped more tightly around the time travellers.

“Look below” the black Octopoid said.

Beneath them Florence, Keptis and the Strange Boy saw a hole emerging in the endless white. It led to a massive pit filled with golden skinned humanoids, similar to those they had seen in their vision; screaming and suffering.

“This vessel is constructed by magic which means that it can change its inside to my will. If I choose the pit of torment will consume you. Tell me what I want to know however?” I will grant you a quick death.”

“You wouldn’t believe us.”  Florence said.

“You’d better hope we do.” The alien responded.

“Okay” Florence said. “We’re time travellers. We were sent here to this world to ensure an important event happens.

There was a silence for 30 seconds.

“I told you you wouldn’t.” She said in response.

One of the aliens dropped Keptis who went hurling towards the pit of never ending torment.

“Please I swear I’m telling the truth. Search the area over mountain and past the valley you’ll find a strange multi coloured craft. I swear!”

The black Ocotopoid ordered one of his men to scan the area. A strange control panel suddenly appeared out of nothin in front of one of the blue creautres who searched it for a while. Keptis meanwhile fell to the bottom of the pit where the creatures started to swarm him before it sealed up.

“Please let him go.” Florence begged.

“Only once we have retrieved your craft. If it exists.” The black Octopoid snapped back.

Commander, we have detected the presence of advanced magics. They appeare to be concentrated into the one area.”

An image of the Circus popped up in the white room just above the black Octopoid.

“What is this.” It asked Florence. “It looks like it would blow away in the wind.”

“It can go anywhere in time and space. If you’ll only let me show you.” Florence said whilst the Strange Boy simply stood there as always with a completely blank expression.

The aliens pulled the Circus on board with a tractor beam and it appeared right in front of Florence and the others. The control panel quickly vanished. The magic allowed the aliens to keep as many supplies as they wanted in one craft at a time, as when they were not needed. They would simply vanish.

“It still looks like it can barely stand without toppling over.” The black Octopoid sneered.

“Well lets take a look inside shall we.” Florence said as she pulled the curtain back.

The black Octopoid alongside two of its minions went inside the vessel, taking the Strange Boy and Florence with them.

The aliens were not particularly impressed with anything they saw until the black Octopoid stared into the fountain. There it saw the same image that the Circus Folk had seen before of the golden humanoids being exterminated.

“Excellent” the black Octopoid thought. “I believe the strange blue humanoid now. This is an image of the future. We will be victorious! Not that there was any doubt of course.”

“You’re monsters.” Florence spat with disgust at the Octopoids.

“What do you know of us? The Hylexans? To the rest of the galaxy we are heroes. We destroyed the evil empire of the Quilax.”

“What are you talking about?”

“You really aren’t from these parts are you? For centuries we were the victims. Along with almost every other civilisation in this galaxy. We were all conquered by those golden fools you seem to pity. They were the most technologically advanced race in this galaxy and they used it for evil. Of all the races they conquered however, their greatest cruelty was reserved for us.”

“Why?”

“We were more different to them than the others. We were the only non humanoid life forms they came across. It took them hundreds of years to even acknowledge that us, slimy, repulsive squid were sentient. They slaughtered millions of us, wiped out whole communities, used us as test subjects, as slave labour. Our planet was turned into an irradiated wasteland as it became a dumping ground for all of the toxic chemicals left over from their weapons. Our people would have eventually died out had we not been able to conquer an area the so called masters of the galaxy had dismissed as a silly superstition. Magic!”

The leader continued. “We had learned magics many thousands of years before thry came to our world, but we eventually abandoned them out of fear. A chance encounter caused one of our people to stumble on the old caves where the spells were. We used them to turn on and destroy our invaders. Even I can’t imagine the glory of being able to tear down machines that had persecuted us for so long with just a single enchantment. The Quilax had never believed in magic. They foolishly thought everything in this universe had a rational and logical explanation. It was to be their downfall.

We not only pushed them back from our world, but we destroyed their forces everywhere. Planets cheered as we pushed the hated invaders back further to their world which we blitzed using the darkest magics. Tomorrow the planet will finally be destroyed by our magics.

“Why are you even here then?” Florence asked.

“Lately the Quilax have begun to develop some magics. Its not anywhere near enough to threaten us, but we have to make sure that none of them are able to escape the planet in time. Also the Emperor wants to make an event of the destruction of the last of our hated enemies. One that the entire galaxy will never forget. We hope to catch at least a few survivors to broadcast their executions to the rest of the galaxy.”

Florence winced in disgust. “I’m sorry for what your people went through. I am, but you’ve now become the very thing you once fought against. What you’re doing here. This is just as evil.” Florence responded. “That’s why we have been sent here. To stop you.”

“How are you possibly going to stop us?” The black Hylexan responded as it reached its tentacles out to grab Florence who stood her ground.

“You will help us. You will show us how this craft of yours works our else your friend will suffer in the pit!”

Florence still didn’t even twitch and the Hylexan found that it couldn’t move its tentacles. The Circus’ magical security system had managed to paralyse the tentacled monsters in their tracks, preventing them from even moving a muscle if Florence didn’t want them to.

“Well look at that. It seems your magic isn’t as powerful as you think. Then again this security system is made from magics from all across time and space. Don’t feel too bad.” Florence laughed.

“You would dare.”

“Quite so. Now you have two choices. Either you release Keptis and let this ship go or my little friend here will slice you all down the middle.”

The Strange Boy jumped into view hold a giant flaming axe which he looked all too eager to use.

“I will not give into a humanoid.”

“A humanoid? Not just a Que, whatever you call it? Interesting.” Florence said.

Suddenly there was a massive crash.

“Captain, Captain” one of the underlings contacted the commander.

“We are under attack. It is one of the giant serpant beasts the Quilax have controlled with their primitive magics. It’s fused with magic, it can hurt us. We need your help.”

“You have to release me blue thing.” The black Hylexan said. “It is my will that controls the ship. Only I can summon up the weapons we need.”

“You’re lying.”

“Fine stay here and wait for that monster to eat us.”

The Hylexan’s taunt was followed by another crashing sound and then a roar.

Florence had to do something, but she didn’t know what. She could still hold the two underlings as hostages, but she wasn’t sure if the Hylexans would care.

There was seemingly no way out.

To Be Continued

 

 

 

 

The Circus Master: An Eye For An Eye: Part 1: The Lost City

 

Sorry for the delay. It’s been a busy week thanks to starting a new job. (Which is going really well.) Doctor Who will be back tomorrow, whilst Professor Fang will be up on either Sunday or Monday.

It had only been a few days from the Circus Folk’s perspective since they had left Victorian London. Carlene had done all she could to try and get to know her new team mates in the meantime. Carlene found Florence to be the easiest to get along with. She and Carlene naturally had a lot in common, having both been turned into Vampires at such a young age, though Florence found Carlene’s somewhat coarse language and behavior quite off putting. She hated Carlene’s smoking habit in particular. Keptis generally tended to ignore Carlene’s attempts to get to know him and keep to himself. She didn’t expect much more to be fair, given his hatred of Vampires.

Denika meanwhile was absorbed in her work throughout most of the journey. Unlike Keptis she wasn’t rude or short with Carlene when she tried to make conversation, but she generally tended to tell the Vampire she was too busy. It wasn’t personal. Denika was always tinkering away with her magics and trying to create new weapons and gadgets.

The Circus Master had been the most eager to talk to Carlene, but ironically she found his perpetual optimism somewhat annoying, though she wasn’t sure if it was just because he was a Vandal and her natural prejudices were kicking in. She tried not to let it bother her.

There was no point in trying to get to know the Strange Boy meanwhile. He hadn’t moved an inch the entire journey. Much like the rest of the crew, Carlene found him quite unsettling to say the least.

Unlike Carlene Ashlei had been mostly quite. Truth be told she was starting to have second thoughts.

Carlene had helped Ashlei cope with the death of brothers. The strange eccentric Vampire had been the only person who had taken Ashlei’s mind off of her troubles for even a second, but it was more than that. Carlene was the closest thing the young orphan had ever had to a mother. Ashlei was determined not to loose her. Now however the reality of what she was in for was starting to sink in for Ashlei. She had no idea where she was going next, and she really didn’t know much about any of these strange people she was with. Also what would they face next? Monsters like the ones that had killed her brothers? Or something worse. The more she thought about it, the more she thought she had been too rash in leaving what would have been a comfortable life in the mansion with Daniel behind.

Carlene did her best to try and ease the culture shock for the young girl. She even showed Ashlei how to work the computer game system on the Tent. Ashlei at first thought it was magic, and she was even frightened of some of the strange creatures she saw on the screen. Still Carlene assured her that it was quite safe, and it soon became practically all Ashlei did on the long journey. Carlene would also try to teach Ashlei how to fight as well. Ashlei seemed to do quite well with weapons, though she struggled more with hand to hand combat.

“Ah good. We’ve landed. It seemed to take longer this time than usual.” The Circus Master said as he jumped out of his chair excitedly. “We must have landed on the furthest edges of our galaxy. Oh don’t worry about the atmosphere. This tent’s magics alters your body to be able to survive in any atmosphere on any planet. You won’t choke or get crushed or anything like that” he said to Carlene and Ashlei. “However” the Circus Master continued as he reached into a box at the end of the room which contained purple pills.

“You’ll need to take these if you want to have any chance of understanding people. Even on the same planet there are often dozens and dozens of languages. Imagine how many there must across the entire universe. No one, not even an immortal like me would have the time for that. This handy little invention from I believe the planet thracos in the 18th century will translate whatever you say, and whatever anyone says to you for a 48 hour period.”

The Circus Master and the others stared into the fountain. They saw what looked like an absolutely beautiful city from a society clearly well in advance of the planet they had just left.

Its inhabitants were humanoid, though they all had golden skin with flame red hair. The golden humanoids looked scared, frantic and desperate. The Circus Folk soon saw why. Several hundred strange tentacled aliens started to descend on the city from the pitch black sky. The creatures were amorphous in shape and glowed bright blue. Tentacles appeared to be able to emerge from any part of the monsters bodies, and retract back into them just as quickly. Each tentacle was capable of stretching out over 80 feet.

The tentacled beasts took very few prisoners. Most of the humanoids they caught. Man, woman, or child, they butchered. They appeared to electrocute their victims with their tentacles, though they also tore several of the humanoids apart, smashed others off of buildings and impaled others through the chest.

All of the team, except for the Circus Master team looked away in disgust. By the time the strange octopoid alien creatures had finished there was nothing left of the city and only a few of the humanoids left. The next vision showed the few survivors trapped in a magical bubble of some kind, screaming in agony.

“Horrifying. To see an entire people be wiped out like that. Even just in a vision” Florence said.

“Well that’s what we’re hear to stop.” The Circus Master said confidently as he prepared to open the doors, though not without some bravado first much to the annoyance of Keptis. The Circus Master always loved to make it a big grand moment the first time the team set foot on a new world, or time. It was even more special now with the teams two new recruits.

Once he opened the doors however the sight that greeted the time travelers was a desolate wasteland, filled with corpses of strange animals and people. The life forms had clearly been killed by a fire storm of some kind. Their bodies were all burnt to a crisp. The sky was pitch black, though it didn’t look as though it was actually night time.

Instead a black smog smothered the sky and filled the air, giving it a foul stench, and despairing look.

“I was hoping it might be a better place for your first visit. Maybe London in the swinging 60s, or Venus, god I love Venus.” the Circus Master said shaking his head.

The earth of the planet felt burning hot. Ashlei was the most affected as she wasn’t used to these types of conditions. At one point Carlene even offered to carry her as they trekked through the dark forboding desert, but Ashlei refused. If she was going to be part of the team, then she felt she couldn’t afford to be the weak link.

Ashlei looked back at the Circus which even in this miserable, pitch black terrain still stood out as colourful. Like a tiny little gem in a sea of coal.

Carlene meanwhile was too busy looking at the strange corpses around them. “I’ve never seen Demons like these before.” She said.

“That’s because they are not Demons.” Said the Circus Master. “They are aliens. Trust me I can sense a Demon. I basically am one remember. This is not your world Carlene. I don’t know what world it is. I didn’t recognise either species in the vision. I can’t imagine there are any survivors? Yet the vision showed us a city we’re supposed to save?”

The Circus Master looked down at one particular corpse. It had a humanoid shape, though its body was too burned for him to get any idea what the creature looked like.

“Poor soul” The Circus Master said with regret “Though I don’t know maybe he was a monster. Still” he said as he looked up at the smog covered sky. “It seems they were the victims of a greater monster.”

The Circus Master turned to face his team. “Whatever the case I think we can all agree that we want to get off this planet as soon as possible. We’ll find what we were looking for a lot faster if we split up into two groups. Denika, Ashlei and Carlene you come with me. Florence and Keptis. You take the Strange Boy.”

Keptis rolled his eyes “Why do you never take the Strange Boy?” “Well you know how it is between Vampires and Vandals. We generally don’t get on” replied the Circus Master.

“Carlene’s a Vampire?” Keptis responded.

“Well they’re our two new recruits so I want to see how they get on” The Circus Master said as he hurriedly pushed Carlene and Ashlei ahead of him.

Even after the Circus Master was gone Keptis still moaned about having to look after the Strange Boy again.

“I don’t exactly get along with Vampires either” he said frowning.

“Well maybe this experience will help you get over some of your prejudices” Florence said back.

The two groups spent roughly half an hour searching through the wilderness of this strange seemingly dead world. All they found were more bodies though there were also what looked like the remains of strange vehicles too. The Circus Master tried to examine one of them, but it was too badly damaged for him to figure out how it functioned.

Ashlei was tired and her feet were burning and so she sat down on a nearby rock. It was scorching to touch, and she jumped up when she first sat on it, but it was still better than being on her feet.

Carlene and Ashlei were jealous of Denika who was circling above them and not having to walk on the scorched earth.

The Circus Master meanwhile was distracted by what was the only living creature they had seen on the planet. It was a small furry creature, no larger than a wolf with pincer like forearms, six pincer like legs, and a long, spikey tail. It a small face with 8 black eyes and 4 sets of teeth.

It was clearly on the level of an animal and nothing more than a scavenger, feasting on the endless corpses. It looked weak and sickly however, but it was not alone. A further six similar creatures began to hover around the carcass, before a larger one, roughly the size of a bear emerged from just over the hill. It was clearly the mother of the pack. The Circus Master made sure not to make any noise. Though they appeared to be scavengers he didn’t want to risk it in case they wanted live meat.

Whilst they were alone Carlene felt she had to try and talk to Ashlei about her brothers. Ashlei practically hadn’t said a word about either of them since it happened.

“Its not what you expected is it Ashlei”? Carlene said in a dry tone.

“Well you know it is only our first journey. I did hope there wouldn’t be quite so many dead bodies mind you”. Ashlei said with regret.

“Well like you said its our first journey” Carlene replied. A few more moments of awkward silence passed before Ashlei finally talked about what it was that was really bothering Ashlei.

“I know you’re thinking about your brothers Ashlei. You’ve said you don’t want to talk about it, and I understand. You’re not ready to accept that the person you love is gone yet. But you’re here among friends.”

Ashlei spoke, struggling to hold back the tears. “All this time the horror of what happened to them both has distracted me from the fact that I’m never going to see them again. I miss them Carlene. Every day when I wake up I. ” She couldn’t go on any longer.

“I know Ashlei. You’ll never stop missing them. Still the memory of either won’t always be unhappy. In years to come you’ll be able to put it in perspective. The loss will always hurt, but you’ll be able to think back on the happy times you had and feel lucky that you had those people in your life.”

Ashlei felt somewhat comforted by Carlene’s words. “Thank you Carlene. I don’t know what I’d do if anything ever happened to you.” Ashlei said with a slight smile.

“You’d cope. You’re stronger than you think Ashlei. I know you don’t think that about yourself, but here you are. You’re doing what no one else from your time has ever done. You’re on the frontier of discovery. Another world, with its own people. Again its just a shame that it had to be this planet.”

Denika meanwhile had been flying across the nearby area searching for signs of life and just her own amusement. She loved to use her magics as often as possible. In the distance however Denika noticed something. It was a tiny orange light that pierced the darkness. It looked like a flare at first, but as it drew closer, Denika could see that it was much larger. It was in fact some kind of strange magical craft made of fire!

Denika shouted to the others to warn them, but most as soon as she did the craft fired a large bolt of fire at Ashlei and Carlene. Fortunately Carlene’s Vampiric reflexes allowed her to push Ashlei out of the way in time. The ship would fire several more bolts of fire at Carlene and Ashlei, but the Vampire managed to dodge them each time.

Denika fired an energy beam at the ship which caused the flame to turn blue for a few seconds, but otherwise didn’t appear to affect it.

“I’ll draw it away” Denika shouted as she flew towards the ship and fired more blasts at it. The ship however simply absorbed them before firing a massive energy beam that enveloped Denika.

Denika tried to break free, but the forcefield was strong. As she was pulled closer Denika could see a small hatch start to appear in the flaming vehicle. A bright light shone from the hatch that made it almost impossible to see what was inside. However several red tentacles soon began to spread out from the light and poked their way through the forcefield. One of them wrapped itself around Denika’s arm. The pain shot through her entire body. Had it not been for her magical constitution the pain would have most likely killed her!

The pain however pushed Denika to summon up a magical blast strong enough to shatter the forcefield and sever all of the red tentacles grabbing or reaching out for her.

The blast had completely drained Denika’s power for a few moments however to the point where she wasn’t able to even fly. She fell over 80 feet from the ship, with no magic to protect her, towards several jagged rocks!

Fortunately Carlene, jumping through the air was able to catch Denika several feet before she fell on the rocks.

“Thanks” Denika said as her power quickly returned. “I need to draw it away from here” she continued before flying through the air and blasting the ship and drawing it away.

Unfortunately however the flaming ship’s attacks had alerted the scavengers. They all turned around and instantly spotted the Circus Master. The children hissed excitedly whilst the mother suddenly spread two gigantic, reptillian looking wings out of her back.

She flew into the air at a lightening speed. Despite her hulking frame the monster was very quick. The children it seemed had not grown their wings yet, but they were still able to scurry quite quickly towards the Circus Master, Carlene and Ashlei and surround them whilst the mother circled above.

The monsters were salivating with hunger. Carlene pulled an electric sword from her beehive. Carlene had found the weapon on the Circus Tent which had been fashioned in the 22nd century. The Circus Master meanwhile unsheathed his claws. He was confident that he wouldn’t need a weapon.

The monsters were all hesitant to strike at the 3 time travelers. The scavengers had never seen anything like them before, but the lure of fresh meat was just too strong for the beasts.

Ashlei was the first to strike at one of them who got too close. She prodded it with her sword which sent the beast scurrying back. Two more monsters got angry and started to attack. The Circus Master, standing in front of his two colleagues unsheathed his claws and scratched at the aliens coming near him.

Unfortunately however whilst they were too busy focusing on the children, the mother swooped down and was able to snatch Carlene.

Whilst the Circus Master was distracted one of the children was able to jump him. Ashlei started swinging her sword around blindly to ward off the other scavengers, but one of them managed to knock the sword out of her hand with a swing of its tail. Another swing sent Ashlei crashing face first into the hot earth.

The scavenger grabbed Ashlei’s foot and pulled her away from the Circus Master. Ashlei tried to grab onto the ground but it was so hot she let go. However she managed to hold on to a piece of burning hot earth which she threw in the scavengers face causing it to let go of her foot as it staggered back in pain.

Ashlei immediately went back to her sword and started slashing the creatures again warding them off. The Circus Master meanwhile managed to overpower his scavenger and picked it up with both hands, lifting it above his head. The Circus Master threw the beast above Ashlei and into the scavengers behind her, which sent them all tumbling backwards.

The Circus Master then grabbed Ashlei by the hand and sped off in the direction the monster had taken Carlene.

The two soon saw that their fellow time traveler had overpowered the queen of the nest. The Queen was lying on the floor, knocked out cold, whilst Carlene was just dusting the burning ash off of her top.

“What did you do to him? said a puzzled but delighted Ashlei. “I hit her in the face. That normally seems to work.” She joked. “I’m a lot stronger than I look remember.”

Just then however the scavengers began to swarm the time travelers again. As they all prepared to fight the monsters off, the monsters suddenly ran towards their mother and began to tear her flesh off her bones.

She was helpless now, and they could sense it. The Circus Master, Carlene, and Ashlei looked away in disgust. “Well I suppose its all very Darwinian in a way, if a little disgusting” said the Circus Master as he winced.

Denika had continued to evade the flaming ship, dodging its attacks, keeping ahead of the vehicle, but she couldn’t keep it up for much longer.

In the distance Denika saw a gigantic mountain. Maybe if she could phase through it? Denika had only done it once before, and it would take a long of power to not only phase, but to maintain it. Still it seemed like her best bet and she flew through the rock. The flaming vessel stopped in its tracks for a few seconds. Even it had never seen magics like this. Inside the rock Denika struggled to remain transparrant. If she gave up for even a second, she would be incased in solid rock.

The flaming ship started to blow the mountain apart and Denika quickly hid behind a large flaming boulder. The ship searched the rubble for a few minutes before speeding off in the other direction.

The Circus Master, Carlene and Ashlei quickly ran to the rubble of the mountain.

“The ship belonged to the monsters we saw in the vision” Denika said as she flew in front of her fellow time travelers.

” When they almost pulled me in I saw several tentacles try to grab me. Their magics are strong.”

“I thought as much. This planet clearly wasn’t destroyed through natural means. The foul odor of dark magic is still in the air.” The Circus Master said. “Come we need to find any survivors before they do.”

The foursome trekked through the wasteland for another half an hour, finding nothing but more corpses and bits of rubble. Over the next hill however there was nothing. The earth was still as dark and scorched as it was elsewhere however. “Strange” said The Circus Master. “I wonder why there are no bodies here? Either this wasn’t a populated area or”.

“Or what” said a scared Ashlei. “There’s some giant, fat, greedy monster out there that’s eaten everything, dead or alive in this entire area and we’ve just wandered haplessly into its nest?”

The Circus Master rubbed his neck somewhat nervously. “Well that does seem to be the likely option, but its best to keep a low profile no matter what.”

“And how do we do that? We’re in the middle of a desert” said Carlene. Just then the four time travelers suddenly heard a massive shriek.

As they looked up, they could see a gigantic, winger, reptillian beast hovering in the sky, its eyes fixated on the four, strange aliens.

The monster looked somewhat like a Pterodactyl. It was a reddish brown in colour, had a long beak like mouth full of sharp, yet jagged, and in some cases broken teeth. Its massive talons also looked burnt and decaying too. The beast overall was thin, covered in burns and looked weak.

However its massive size still made it a truly intimidating sight. The monsters wingspan was over 80 feet. It dwarfed even the mightiest Pterosaurs on earth, and was bigger than a small plane.

Denika tried to fire a magical energy beam at the monster but it was able to swerve the blast and quickly grabbed the Witch in its talons.

Ashlei however was able to jab the monster with her electric sword. She only got it for a second, but it was on one of its rotten, broken toes. The monster roared in agony, and whilst it was distracted, Denika used her magic to blast it back into the sky.

The monster went tumbling back through the air, but it didn’t take long for the beast to gain its balance in the air again and start circling Ashlei, Carlene and the Circus Master, whilst dodging more blasts from Denika.

The Circus Master shouted at the monster to come to him, assuring Carlene and Ashlei that he knew what he was doing.

The winged beast chased the Circus Master across the black desert and though he was able to keep ahead of the monster for a long time it eventually caught up to him.

It grabbed the Vandal in its talons and started to lift him in the air. However once it had lifted him a good distance above the ground, the Circus Master stabbed his claws into the monsters toe. It released him in pain, but the Circus Master held onto its toe and quickly jumped onto the monsters back, and quickly stabbed his claws into the beasts spine, it managed to flip him off, however the Circus Master managed to dig his claws into its right wing as he fell and it tore a large chunk of flesh off.

The Circus Master went plummeting to the ground, but he survived the fall easily due to his Vandal constitution.

The monster meanwhile unable to keep flying with its torn wing also went crashing to the ground.

“I told you I could deal with it. I know we’re the aliens on his planet, but he tried to eat us so I’d say he was fair game.” The Circus Master said to his team mates as they helped him up.

The monster had clearly broken many of its bones in the fall. It struggled to even move, but it was still able to scream.

The Circus Master went over to put the beast out of its misery, but as he got near the monster, the earth started to shake so much so that The Circus Master and the others were thrown off of their feet.

Just then a gigantic snake like monster, so huge it dwarfed the winged beast came bursting out of the ground, behind the crippled winged terror.

The creature was at least over 500 feet long. Its skin was bright purple, with yellow spots, and a massive green sail running down its back. It had a single green eye, with a red pupil. The monsters mouth was locked in the form of a hideous grin,. Its gigantic teeth were almost too big to fit in its mouth.

The monster opened its jaws and with one scoop it swallowed the winged monster in one bite before disappearing beneath the ground again.

The shaking started again however, and this time a smaller snake like creature, though still over 50 feet long emerged from the ground in front of the Circus Master, Ashlei, Carlene and a hovering Denika.

The monster darted at them and would have eaten Ashlei had the Circus Master not been faster and managed to push her out of the way.

Denika used her magics to create a circular barrier around herself and the others. She tried to fly out of reach, but several more monsters came bursting out of the ground and started to hit the forcefield. The field held off the monsters who struck at them several more times. Each time the field was hit, Denika was hurt however. One strike from one of the larger monsters sent the bubble tumbling below the ground into the dark caverns.

It was so dark below, the Denika could barely see ahead. She as forced to pilot her sphere blindly through the pit, trying to avoid any monsters.

Just then one of the monsters, larger than the first, came bursting through the darkness from below and engulfed the three time travelers with one bite.

The sphere passed down the beasts throat and into its stomach. The monsters digestive acids slowly began to eat away at the force field, weakening Denika further.

However having taken so many batterings the force field was now cracking. As they floated through the monsters digestive acids, they bumped into bits of rotting flesh, and even the severed head of another strange creature. The head whose flesh had almost all melted off, had two massive horns on the back of its head, and two more above its eyes. It also had a long horn on the tip of its snout, with several shorter horns running down to the back of its head. It also had three sets of long, curved, razor sharp teeth set deeply into its skull. The overall shape of the beasts head was similar somewhat to that of a large therapod Dinosaur.

Ashlei screamed as the acid began to peer through the sphere in small drips. One drop hit Ashlei and burned her skin causing her to jump into Carlene’s arms.

Even the Circus Master himself began to panic. “It can’t end like this. Surely?” He said to himself quietly. Denika meanwhile who was almost completely exhausted suddenly rose up and performed a magical blast. Doing so whilst still holding the crumbling bubble together.

It was only a small blast with very little power, and did no lasting damage to the monster, but because the blast was in its stomach, it was enough affect the monsters stomach lining which Denika was hoping for. The monster vomited the sphere up (along with countless bones, skulls and fragments of its other unfortunate victims.)

The sphere went plummeting in a sea of green vomit down the abyss, with the time travelers all holding on to each other and screaming. Denika however using her last ounce of strength pushed the sphere out of the vomit, though it still fell to the bottom of the ground where it smashed to pieces instantly, sending, Ashlei, Denika, Carlene and The Circus Master flying in different directions.

Pieces of rubble were still falling everywhere around them, and the Circus Master was barely able to dodge a massive boulder that nearly crushed him!

Carlene meanwhile ran towards Denika who had been knocked completely unconscious by the strain of the magics. She tried to rouse her, but Denika was completely out of it. Carlene hoisted Denika up over her shoulder and ran.

The Circus Master meanwhile, acting quickly was able to stop a small snake monster  (still about 45 feet long) from devouring both Ashlei and Carlene. He only noticed the monster despite its size until it was looming over Ashlei and Carlene due to the darkness of the cave! Wasting no time, the Circus Master grabbed the large boulder that had almost crushed him and hurled at the Snake monster sending it flying back through the air.

The time travelers ran head in blind panic. They could barely even see where they were going it was so dark, and the sound of the monsters screaming was deafening.

They suddenly reached the edge of a cliff, where several hundred feet below they could see a massive city, similar to the one they had seen in their vision.

“How do we get there?” Ashlei asked.

“We jump” the Circus Master said.

Before Ashlei could even ask what he went, the Circus Master grabbed her and jumped over the edge of the cliff alongside Carlene who was carrying Denika.

Once they reached the bottom of the cliff near the city, The Circus Master, Carlene and Ashlei saw to their horror hundreds of giant snake monsters flying through the air. The light from the city allowed them to see above more clearly now. The biggest were over 700 feet long! They were swirling around snapping and biting at each other.

The three ran towards the city, with the snakes not noticing them as they were too busy fighting with each other.

Once they reached the city however, they found that they couldn’t get within 5 feet of. A mysterious barrier was preventing anyone from going any further.

“In a planet this nasty you’d have to have some kind of force field. Question is how do we get through it?” The Circus Master

Ashlei could see several more snakes, hovering in the air above them. “I don’t know but please figure it out quickly!”

Just then a massive green spotlight shone from the tallest tower in the city and landed squarely on Carlene, the Circus Master and Ashlei.

They all paniced as the light had surely brought them to the attention of all of the snakes, and for a moment the monsters, all of them, regardless of size, looked as though they were about to pounce on the foursome.

Instead however a hover craft came flying out of the city. It was yellow in colour, triangular in shape and had a strange blue glow coming beneath it, not unlike the one from the city.

The craft was completely smooth with no designs or markings on it whatsoever. As the ship zeroed in on the the Circus Master and the others the Snakes stopped in their tracks. They didn’t seem scared of the craft. Instead these unspeakable monstrosities seemed suddenly seemed more like a litter of puppies anxiously awaiting their masters commands.

The top half of the craft opened up, revealing three golden humanoids, just like the ones they saw in their vision, There didn’t appear to be anything else in the craft, including even controls of any kind.

The humanoids circled the three time travelers whilst holding their strange looking weapons for a few minutes before the Circus Master spoke.

“You know you’re never going to get anywhere if you don’t ask us questions? said the Circus Master in a dry tone.

The aliens were a little taken aback. The male spoke in a voice that sounded, in contrast to the creatures appearance, thick and rough.

“How can you speak our language?” said the creature. “You don’t resemble any of the life forms we’ve colonised, or even any of the known life forms from the 7 Galaxies? You’re with them aren’t you?” He began to shout. “You’ve come to spy on us! Tell me how did you find us?”

The Circus Master did his best to try and diffuse the situation. “I don’t know what’s going on on this planet. We’re just travelers. We mean you no harm.”

“Right” sneered the alien. “You’re just a simple traveler who managed to stumble into the middle of an intergalactic war, and then survived an encounter with the Lystegrias? We should feed you to them.”

“No” interrupted one of the females “We’ll take them in for questioning. Find out what they’re doing here. They’ll wish our little pets had eaten them.” She said with a sadistic smile.

Whilst the male alien wasn’t looking, the Circus Master was able to kick the gun out of his hand with his Vandal speed. As he reached down to grab it, the other two alien women instantly fired several times on the Circus Master. The laser beams from their guns cut several holes in the Circus Master but did not otherwise deter him and they quickly healed.

“I knew it” said the male. “You have magic. You are with them!” The Circus Master picked up the gun and aimed it at the three aliens. “You can’t kill me, but I can easily kill all three of you. Even without this” he said as he unsheathed the claws on his other hand.

The two females dropped their guns. “What do you want from us?” said the male.

“I want to know the history of this planet. Who are you? What happened here? With monsters like those as your pets, who could possibly terrify you to the point where you’re living underground and ready to shoot anything that moves? We’re hear to help you.”

The aliens seemed a little perplexed by the Circus Masters questions.  They felt sure he was a spy for their enemies.

“You know our history. We were once the greatest civilisation until you freaks tore it apart. Go on kill us. I’d rather die now than see my people burn.”

As the male spat back at the Circus Master, Denika finally began to rouse from his slumber.

Carlene tended to her. “Thank god. I was getting worried there that you were never going to wake up.”

Whilst the Circus Master was arguing with the aliens, trying to convince them that he wasn’t a spy, Ashlei noticed another 6 yellow crafts descending from the city towards them.

She tried to alert the Circus Master, but he cut her off each time as he was too busy arguing. It was only when the male alien started laughing that the Circus Master turned around and saw what was waiting for him.

Whilst the Circus Master was distracted, the male alien rushed him. Carlene meanwhile pushed the drained Denika and Ashlei behind her and started to fight off several of the aliens. The aliens strength was no match for that of a Vandal, and the Circus Master tossed him away effortlessly. However the alien did manage to knock the gun out of The Circus Masters hand, and whilst he was busy fighting the male alien off, who attempted to rush the Vandal again, the two female aliens quickly grabbed their two guns and then grabbed Ashlei and the weakened Denika.

The two female aliens called out to the Circus Master, with their guns aimed firmly at Ashlei and Denika’s heads.

“We know you are laser proof, but are your friends?”

With no choice the Circus Master got on his knees and put his hands behind his head as the 6 other crafts landed around them..

“Well” said the leader of the group. “Rather strange looking aliens. I don’t care what little magic tricks you have. You’re outnumbered. You will tell us what we want or you will suffer. Trust me. We were once the dominant force in this galaxy. We know how to force people to do what we want.

To Be Continued

The Circus Master: The Book the Vampires: Part 8: New Beginnings

 

As Marcozia lifted his stake into the air to strike the killing blow, Denika tried to fire another magical blast at the Vampire, but it deflected it as easily as it had done before, though at least this time Denika was able to evade it.

Denika fired different kinds of spells at the Vampire, but Marcozia either dodged them or managed to deflect the magic back at Denika. The magic that Denika used from her adopted world was new to Marcozia, and he could sense it was, so he knew not to try and deflect those attacks.

“Pathetic. You call yourself a Witch?” The Vampire sneered at her. “You’d be the type to get burned at the stake and be too stupid to realise you could just fly away on a broom!”

Whilst the Vampire was taunting her however, the Circus Master grabbed the rug that Marcozia was standing on and pulled it from under him, knocking the Vampire flat on his face.

Using the magic from her world, which Marcozia had no way of deflecting him, Denika engulfed the Vampire in an energy beam. It would be strong enough to vaporise a human in a matter of seconds, but Marcozia’s Vampiric constitution allowed him to survive longer. He fought hard against the beam, but its power was too strong and he collapsed to the floor, apparently beaten. Suddenly the front two doors of the church came smashing down.

Four different breeds of Vampire stood there. A female Vampire with red hair, and green slimy tentacles emerging from various parts of her body (in truth Kelly.) A small Vampire with green skin, horns on its head, 4 eyes, and six arms. A Vampire with blue skin, black eyes like a shark, yellow fangs, and long arms that ended with three clawed fingers. Finally the last Vampire was a large, skinny,  deathly pale, blonde creature with spindly arms and completely black eyes. Its mouth was twisted into a hideous grin.

Kelly shot one of her tentacles at Denika, who was forced to place a magical shield around herself for protection. Unfortunately as a result she had to abandon her spell around Marcozia. Marcozia’s flesh was badly burned from her spell and in rage he jumped at Denika tearing through her magical barrier with his strength and knocking her to the ground below. The Circus Master ran to help her, but as he did, Kelly reached out and grabbed him by the leg, pulling the Vandal towards the other three Vampires, who started to scratch, punch and kick the Circus Master furiously.

Marcozia slowly choked the life out of Denika. He wanted to savour her death after what she had put him through. It had been a long time since anyone, apart from his maker, had been able to hurt him.

With her last ounce of strength Denika managed to summon up a small blast using magic created from her adopted universe that threw Marcozia across the room.

Marcozia however quickly jumped back up and ran at Denika. Too weak to summon up powerful magics, and knowing that Marcozia would most likely dodge her attacks, Denika fired a magical blast into the ceiling causing rubble to fall between her and the Vampire.

Getting her strength back, Denika quickly flew into the air and fired another blast at the ceiling above the Vampire, burying him under a mass of rubble.

Denika then flew towards the Vampires attacking the Circus Master. She fired an energy blast at the blue clawed Vampire. It was clearly not as strong as Marcozia as it was vaporized relatively quickly.

The other monsters quickly turned their attention to the Witch and started attacking her, though Denika was able to evade their attacks.

Whilst they were distracted, the Circus Master headed for his his hat containing the weapons.

Kelly was soon able to get a lucky hit at Denika and send her flying towards the upper balcony, before scaling the side of the building with her tentacles in pursuit.

The Circus Master pulled a copper knife from his hat and plunged it into the blonde Vampire’s heart. (He had encountered this breed in the future and knew their weaknesses.)

The smaller green Vampire shoved its hand through the Vandal’s stomach, but the Circus Master finished him by putting his hat over its head and pulling it down. The hat’s magical security system fired various anti Vampire and Demon repellents into the monsters head causing the green Vampire to slump to the floor in agony. Of all the weapons that had been fired into the monsters head, the Circus Master could see that the iron knife had hurt him the most, and so he pulled it out and shoved it straight through the beasts heart.

Kelly meanwhile had managed to ensnare Denika. Clinging to the roof by two of her tentacles, she wrapped one tentacle around Denika’s waist, one around her neck and four around her arms and legs. The only reasons Denika was still alive was because the monster couldn’t decide whether it wanted to crush the life out of her, or tear her into five pieces.

The Circus Master jumped up to the ceiling to attack the Vampire, but Kelly quickly batted him away with another tentacle.

Whilst the Circus Master was on the floor, Kelly reached one tentacle down and wrapped it  around his legs and started to bash Vandal against the roof and walls of the Church. The Circus Master however held onto his hat and threw two knives into the tentacles the monster used to hold onto the roof, severing them.

Kelly fell to the ground, dropping Denika who then flew out of reach. The Circus Master threw several more knives into the tentacled monster from his hat, distracting her long enough for Denika to catch Kelly in an energy blast, similar to the one she had used on Marcozia. Whilst caught in the blast, the Vampire reached one tentacle out and managed wrap it around Denika’s throat. The Circus Master however again severed the tentacle, this time using his own claws! Within a matter of seconds Kelly was vaporised into nothing.

The two had not known Kelly in life, but they had ultimately done her a bigger favour than anyone who had. They had spared her from an eternity as that monster and put her down before she got a chance to harm her loved ones.

“Quick get them out of her now” the Circus Master said about Marcozia’s prisoners to Denika, whilst he went for the book of the Vampires which he then placed in his hat.

Denika wrapped an energy bubble around herself and the three people Marcozia had held prisoner who she quickly flew out of the church, with the Circus Master following her.

Marcozia meanwhile pulled himself out of the rubble, roaring and hissing. He ran towards the doors of the church, only to see Denika conjuring up a massive energy blast in front. In panic he ran back through the church. Denika’s blast however brought the entire church down though Marcozia was still able to escape just in time by jumping out the back window. The blast still scorched the Vampire and threw him several feet through the air.

“Cursed Witch!” he screamed in pain and anger.

It had been twenty minutes since Brian had made last tried to attack Ashlei. She had now become lost in the factory.

Occasionally she heard her monstrous brother cackle. “Why are you hiding.” Ashlei shouted whilst holding her crowbar up. “Then your pain would be over” Brian taunted

Ashlei backed into a wall. She could barely see anything in the pitch black, but she could at least make sure that he couldn’t jump her from behind this way.

Suddenly Ashlei saw a figure dart by at a lightening speed. It looked smaller than Brian. Had he turned another? She couldn’t take this torment for another second.

“You fucking coward. Fight me!” she screamed in panic, only to be greeted by the sound of her Demonic brother screaming. “What kind of trick is this.” She thought.

The screaming didn’t stop. Still holding her crowbar, Ashlei moved forward slightly, getting a glimpse of something in the distance. It was her brother fighting with a smaller Vampire. The Strange Boy!

“Thank God” Ashlei said to herself whilst dropping her crowbar in relief.

The Strange Boy had been left to guard the tent by the Circus Master. Though nothing could enter the tent, the Circus Master was still worried that Brian could lure Ashlei outside.

The Strange Boy however had almost instantly abandoned his post. Whether this was because of his increasingly unpredictable nature, or even just because a Vandal had asked him, Ashlei had no idea, but he had tracked Ashlei through the factory.

Brian had no chance against the Strange Boy. His breed of Vampire were far more powerful than Brian’s. The fight was over in just a few minutes, with Brian only managing to land a few hits on the Boy, who in turn broke the larger Vampires legs and tore his guts out!

As Brian lay beaten on the floor, the Strange Boy pulled out a copper knife and prepared to strike it into the Vampires heart.

“STOP” Ashlei shouted to both Vampires surprise.

“Let me do it” she said.

Carlene, Florence and Keptis had managed to make their way to what looked like an old prison where the Vampires kept most of the humans for food, or to be turned into new Alpha’s. (Though they also kept people in cages underneath other old buildings when the prison was full.)

The three had evaded the horde of pursuing Vampires by jumping from the tops of buildings (with Florence carrying Keptis.) They had managed to lose the monsters by jumping down a back alley and then sneaking in through a nearby house, after which they then slipped out through a nearby window.

The Vampires were running through the streets tearing up buildings to try and find their enemies. The three time travellers, keeping out of sight crept in through a back window of the prison.

Inside there were very few people. Most had either been turned into monsters or dragged off to be tortured and killed by the Vampires. The prison was dark and dank and limbs and entrails were scattered around the place.

Whilst Carlene and Keptis searched the nearby area for any Vampires, Florence approached the first prisoner they could see, a young man cowering in a near by cell, covered in blood.

Suddenly he ground beneath Florence’s feet began to shake and she was knocked over as something big began to emerge out of the floor.

It was a giant snail’s shell. Carlene quickly shouted at Florence to get out of there. She knew this breed of Vampire from her time only too well.

Before Florence could even get up however, the upper body of a hideous, green, slimy bald, fanged man came out of the shell and grabbed Florence. The monster didn’t even speak. It was completely animalistic.

Carlene tried to attack the Snail Vampire but it smacked her across the room and through the doors of a nearby cell.

Keptis tried to attack the Vampire next with his flaming saw, but the monster deflected the saw onto its shell which it bounced off of!

Florence however grabbed one of the poles from the cell door that Carlene had been thrown through and stabbed it into the Vampires eye. Whilst the Vampire screamed, Keptis saw its hand off with his saw. Carlene then jumped on the Vampires held it down, whilst Keptis sawed the monsters head clean off.

“Snail Vampires were always my least favourite.” Carlene said with revulsion as she wiped the stinging slime from its back off her hands.

The two Vampires and the Martian were able to free all of the captives with Keptis easily slicing its way through the metal bars.

When they reached the bottom floor however, dozens of Vampires came bursting in through the walls from different corners. The three time travellers were completely surrounded, but they made sure to put the prisoners in middle. Fortunately help soon arrived in the form of Denika, who came crashing through from above in a magical bubble along with The Circus Master and Marcozia’s prisoners.

She quickly scooped the other three time travellers up from the ground and flew back through the sky.

Several winged Vampires started to attack the bubble, though most of them simply bounced off of it. Still each time they struck the bubble, Denika was clearly hurt.

One Vampire managed to jump its way through the bubble just like Marcozia had done, but Keptis quickly disposed of it with his flaming saw.

“There are other prisoners, we need to find them” Carlene said.

The Strange Boy handed Ashlei the copper knife whilst he held the Vampire down. The Strange Boy’s behaviour was hard to predict, but he seemed to understand on some small level why Ashlei felt she should do this herself.

Ashlei still hesitated for a few minutes. The Strange Boy didn’t react one way or the other. It just stood there as always with no expression.

“Please Ashlei. Don’t fail me again like you always did.” Brian whimpered. Even when begging for its life a Vampire couldn’t help but be cruel.

After waiting for a few minutes Ashlei finally plunged the knife straight through the Vampires heart. Just before Brian crumbled into nothing, Ashlei said. “I’m doing this for Brian. The real Brian.”

After killing the twisted Demonic caricature of her brother Ashlei simply sat in silence. The danger was over, for her now anyway, but she started to wonder why she had even fought so hard for life. Where could she possibly go from here. The Special Boy as always didn’t speak or acknowledge anything had happened, but he still didn’t leave her side.

The Circus Folk had managed to find a few more survivors scattered about the village, which they were able to trace using Carlene, Florence and the Circus Masters’ advanced sense of smell. Unfortunately the stress of carrying so many people, now up to 20 was weighing heavily on Denika. She almost couldn’t bare it.

“Down there” Carlene shouted, pointing at what looked like a small park.

In the centre of the park were a few people hung upside down from trees, all women, and they all looked as though they had been beaten and scratched.

Denika lowered them to an area just outside the trees. She was forced to temporarily release the bubble when she landed, she was so exhausted. It was a struggle to stay awake.

8 Vampires instantly came jumping down from the trees as the Circus Folk approached the hostages. They were of the same breed as each other and looked relatively human, albeit with reddish skin. They were incredibly fast and agile. Carlene, Keptis, the Circus Master and Florence battled the Vampires. Physically they were very weak, and quite easy for the experience hunters to overpower, but their speed made them a pain.

Whilst the Circus folk were distracted however, the horde caught up with the time travellers and started to attack their prisoners. One of the winged Vampires grabbed a prisoner, a young girl, and threw her to the horde who then tore her apart.

Denika was too weak to even fight back. Seeing what was happened, Carlene quickly grabbed the Circus Masters hat and jumped in front of Denika and the prisoners who all huddled together. She started to throw various knives at the Vampires. As there were so many different breeds, some Vampires were not affected, though she did manage to slay over a dozen or so of the monsters. There were far too many of them however and they soon cornered Carlene and the prisoners.

Denika managed to muster up her strength just in time and send a wave to blast the  Vampires back, before placing the bubble around herself, her team mates and the prisoners, who Keptis, Florence and the Circus Master had managed to bring down from the trees.

“We, we have to get out of here.” Denika said weakly as they hovered to sky. “I can’t hold on much longer. We’ve scoured the entire village, there are no more survivors.”

“Yes.” Said the Circus Master. “If only we’d arrived earlier. We’ll need to fly round the village one more time however.” He continued.

“Why!” Denika said barely able to speak she was in so much pain from the struggle.

“We need to burn it down that’s why.” The Circus Master replied as he reached into his hat for several of Denika’s flame bottles. There were 8 in total which he threw all over the village. He couldn’t make the bottles target each individual Vampire. There wouldn’t be enough for that. Instead he directed the magical flames to take the entire village down. The Vampires started to flee, but the flames cut them off as the spread around the entire village. Among the Vampires Carlene caught sight of in the panic was the young urchin boy.

In a matter of minutes the entire village went up in flames and Denika only just made it out before finally fainting in mid flight. She and all of the others she was carrying fell from about 20 feet in the air.

One of the prisoners even broke their leg in the fall. Carlene managed to catch Denika before she hit the ground however, but she couldn’t rouse her.

“Denika, Denika please say something”. She had been pushed too far, not just in carrying the prisoners, but also in levelling the building and conjuring the magics from her world, which took considerably more power.

The sound of the Vampires screaming in the flames was deafening, but not all of the bloodsuckers were consumed in the fire.

4 large grey Vampires came marching out of the fire and Marcozia stood on the largest grey Vampires shoulders above the flames.

Marcozia instantly jumped at the Circus Master, whilst the grey Vampires went for the others. Carlene tried to punch one of the monsters but it simply grabbed her arm which it then broke before throwing her back towards the flames, though Florence managed to divert her in time.

Keptis’ flaming saw was no use. It simply bounced off of the Vampires and when he tried to fight them in hand to hand combat they easily dominated the Martian. Still he didn’t give up.

Marcozia meanwhile after overpowering the Circus Master had stolen the Vandals hat from him. Whenever the Circus Master tried to get it back, Marcoza would easily dodge his attacks and strike him to the floor.

“Without this box of tricks you’re nothing! Tell you what, get on your knees and beg and I’ll give them back and you can try and save your friends.” Marcozia taunted

The Circus Master looked around at Florence and Carlene being hopelessly overpowered by one of the grey Vampires, whilst the other three toyed with Keptis.

“Well do we have a deal.”

The Circus Master got down on his knees much to Marcozia’s delight.

“I honestly thought you’d have more dignity than that, then again you are a Vandal.”

Whilst he was gloating however, the Circus Master dug his long talons into the earth and threw mud in the Vampires eyes. Whilst Marcozia was blinded for just a few seconds, the Circus Master attacked the Vampire and slashed him repeatedly, tearing his guts out, slashing one of his hands off and clawing out one of his eyes, before grabbing the hat.

The Circus Master threw two gold knives to Carlene and Florence. Carlene slashed the Grey Vampire in the throat before burying her knife into its chest, killing it instantly.

Florence meanwhile jumped onto the back of one of the Grey Vampires attacking Keptis’ back and stabbed it through the heart, before flipping over to face the other two. She managed to stab another of the monsters before it could even react, whilst with the final monster she quickly dodged its attack, slashed at its kneecaps, then its chest, and its throat, before finally stabbing it through the heart.

Marcozia quickly grabbed Keptis whilst Florence was busy with the Vampires and held him by the throat.

“Give me the book” he snarled at the Circus Master. “Or I’ll tear this freak’s head off.”

The Circus Master reached into his hat, but rather than the book, he threw a stake to Keptis who caught it and stabbed Marcozia in the shin, before punching him in the face.

Whilst the Vampire was dazed and weakened from the pain, the Circus Master jumped him and lifted Marcozia above his head before throwing him into the flames of the village.

Marcozia’s screams were quickly drowned out those of the other Vampires in the burning village.

“It’s over” the Circus Master said to himself. The Vampires base of operations was destroyed and the book was in their possession. Sadly not all of the Vampires would perish in the flames. The Circus Master and Carlene had encountered many of the ‘new’ breeds in the village in the far future. Clearly some of them would escape the flames and infect others, or at the very least they had infected others around London already.

There was nothing the Circus Folk could do to stop that, but they had succeeded in their mission in preserving the time line.

It would be another 2 months before they could leave Victorian England however. They had to make sure that the 28 people they rescued from the Vampires did not share anything they had learned about the supernatural to preserve the timeline. They also had to make sure that the families of those who didn’t make it, such as Kelly were informed which was always the hardest part of the mission.

The Circus folk also had to make sure than of the surviving Vampires didn’t regroup and to bury the book. The Circus Master couldn’t destroy it, even if he wanted to. It would be discovered again at a later date according to the timeline, so he made sure to bury it in the place it would be found.

At the very least it would be several decades before its horrors would be unleashed upon mankind again.

During this time Carlene looked after the children. Carlene had been the one who found Ashlei in the factory after they returned to the Circus from the village. Carlene was furious that the Strange Boy had abandoned his post, and scolded him. Not that the little Vampire even noticed. Ashlei didn’t even have to tell Carlene what had happened. She couldn’t bring herself to say it. As soon as Carlene arrived Ashlei collapsed into her arms sobbing.

Ashlei always felt she could be herself around Carlene more than anyone. Even with her brothers she had to be the strong one, but with Carlene she could be honest with how she really felt. Even then however Ashlei still found it hard to talk about what happened with Tom and Brian. She didn’t want to admit it happened.

Carlene would wait on the two children every day for 2 months. Fortunately for Daniel they had managed to catch the infection in time, though he still went through hell for a few days until he was sure he wasn’t infected. It was only due to Carlene’s support that both children were able to make it through the darkest periods in their lives.

Sadly however after 2 months. The Circus Folk were ready to go and Carlene wanted to go with them.

Carlene for the first time in a long while felt that she had really belonged among others when she was with the Circus Folk. Fortunately for Carlene they were not only happy for her to come along after she had proven herself in battle, but they needed her to come along to preserve the timeline.

The reason the Circus Master had known who Carlene was in the first place, was because he had learned about his own future where Carlene would be part of the team on one of his many travels.

Ironically had Carlene not wanted to travel with the Circus Folk then that could have posed a serious problem for the timeline!

Telling Ashlei and Daniel that she would be leaving them would be no easy task. Carlene didn’t want to leave either, but she wanted to move on from Victorian London, and the Vampire also felt that if she stayed with the children; she would just make Ashlei and Daniel targets for both the supernatural and the easily frightened citizens of London.

Carlene intended to leave her house and wealth to the two children, but it sadly it wasn’t enough. For Ashlei anyway. Daniel was upset but he understood Carlene’s reasons. Ashlei simply couldn’t bare to lose someone again.

“I’m sorry darling”. Carlene said softly. “I have to go to preserve the timeline . Call it fate or destiny or whatever, but I have to go.”

“In my entire life Carlene, you’ve been the closest thing I’ve ever had to a mother. Now I’m going to lose you too. I don’t think I can.”

Carlene hugged Ashlei. “I wish it could be different Ashlei.”

“Take me with you.” Ashlei said through the tears.

“I’m afraid I can’t.”

“You just want to abandon me like everyone else.”

“You wouldn’t be safe Ashlei.”

“You can protect me. Please, just ask them.”

Carlene thought about it for a second. Deep down she wanted Ashlei to come with her too. She had grown extremely fond of the young girl. Still she’d never forgive herself if anything happened to her. Carlene decided to let Ashlei ask the Circus Master, believing that he would tell her that she couldn’t come to preserve the timeline.

It was cowardly Carlene admitted to herself, to put the task on the Circus Master, but she felt Ashlei would accept it more if it was to preserve the timeline.

Daniel was adamant about not going with them. Whilst he was sad to see both Ashlei and Carlene go, he had had his fill of adventure and monsters for one lifetime.  Somehow Ashlei and Daniel both knew this would be the last time they would see one another and wished each other luck.

“Goodbye Ashlei. I hope you can find peace wherever you go.”

“You too Daniel. I’m sorry I said I’d always be there for you.”

“Its okay I understand. Thank you both for everything.”

When Carlene and Ashlei arrived at the Circus, the others except for the Circus Master were surprised to see Ashlei.

“You’re not thinking of bringing her along too?” Keptis said in disbelief.

“Please let me come with you. I’ve got nothing back here. I want” she said as she clutched onto Carlene. “To be with you.”

The Circus Master was silent for a few seconds before letting out a big smile.

“Of course you can come with us.”

The rest of the Circus Folk were shocked.

“Are you taking the piss?” Keptis said

“I don’t make the rules up. You should know that by now. Do you remember in the year 1949 when we took care of that skirmish between the Goblins and the Monsters, the old man who made sure I took his diary with me? Take a look” The Circus Master said as he took the diary out of the book case and tossed it to Keptis.

Keptis flicked through the book for a few seconds before handing it round the others.

“Well that settles that then.” Keptis said somewhat embarrassed.

“I can’t say that a young child with no fighting skills is an ideal choice of companion, but like I said I don’t make the rules up. Miss McKay I hope you do us proud”

Ashlei hugged Carlene who was still unsure about the whole situation. At the very least she didn’t have to break Ashlei’s heart, but she wasn’t sure what kind of a life they could give the young girl. The Circus Master tossed a coin into the fountain which then turned green, before the Circus vanished in a puff of purple smoke, to another time and place.

Whilst Daniel had had his fill of the supernatural, he would go on to use his wealth to fund research into the occult. He lived a long and very happy life thanks to Carlene’s wealth and he never forgot who was responsible for it. Many years later he would repay the favour to Carlene and Ashlei in 1949 when he met a younger version of the Circus Master and gave him his diary, which he assured the Vandal would come in handy one day for both of them.

                                                            Next Adventure

                                                          An Eye for An Eye

 

 

 

 

 

The Circus Master: The Book of the Vampires: Part 7: Blood is Thicker

 

“Ashlei, Ashlei I know you’re in there, please, I need your help”. Daniel started to stir from his sleep. Ashlei ignored her brother and instead tended to Daniel.

“What, what’s going on” Daniel grumbled as he started to come round, but as soon as he looked down at the stump where his arm had once been it all came screaming back.

“Oh god it wasn’t a dream. Ashlei, I’m, I” suddenly he noticed Brian’s voice calling from outside.

“He’s here he found us” Daniel said as he struggled in the chains.

“Relax he can’t get in here” Ashlei said somewhat coldly.

“Why am I chained up? Is this, the Circus? Where’s the Vampire, the Circus Master, the Witch, the”

“They chained you up” Ashlei said as she searched through a chest.

“What? Why?”

“They said you were infected by my brother. They’re not sure on whether you’ll turn into one of those Vampires or not. You’ll have to wait a couple more hours to see if you’re in the clear.”

“What!” Daniel shouted in anguish. “No, oh god please tell me I won’t become one of those things, please Ashlei.”

“I’m sorry” Ashlei said almost with no emotion which disturbed Daniel.

“I have to see my brother now.”

“What you can’t go out there. It’s not your brother anymore. Ashlei, please I need your help. Ashlei!” She continued to ignore him as she marched outside to confront her inhuman brother.

As soon as she stepped outside Ashlei could see Brian was lying, not that she expected her brother to be himself mind you, but it was still a shock to hear her brother’s voice, come from the hideous Vampire that had torn her brother to pieces and tried to kill her.

Brian started to cackle. “I can’t believe you fell for that. You never were too bright were you sis?”

Ashlei tried to keep her cool. “I know this thing isn’t who Brian really was.” she said whilst trying to hold back her tears.

“You’re right. Its the product of your failure. You were supposed to look out for me, for both of your little brothers and look what happened. You left me in the streets of London, left me to be turned into this! If those monsters had just killed me, you could have mourned for a few seconds and then forgotten me like everybody else would. Instead they’ve immortalised your selfishness and cowardice for all time.”

“I swear I never meant to leave you, I” She held back the tears. “No I know you’re not him, but I do want the real Brian, if he’s in there, to know that I’m sorry.”

“Sorry” the Vampire laughed. “Is that all you can say for letting me become this.”

“No I meant sorry for what I’m about to do.” Ashlei pulled out a small bottle of holy water that she had taken from the chest in the Circus and threw it over Brian whose flesh began to burn and sizzle just like before.

As the Vampire fell to the floor writhing in agony, Ashlei quickly made a move towards the monster with a wooden stake. She stabbed it through his heart. Nothing happened however and Brian grabbed Ashlei by the throat and threw her in the opposite direction from the Circus.

Brian laughed as the holy water burned his flesh.

“You should have done your research Sis” he taunted as he pulled the stake from his chest.

Now completely defenceless, Ashlei tried to run back to the Circus, but Brian caught her again and threw his sister back the way.

“Lets have some fun!” He said with a sadistic glee as Ashlei fled in the other direction. There was nowhere for her to run to except for a nearby abandoned factory.

Once she reached the factory, Ashlei quickly shut the huge, steel doors behind her. Brian thumped on the doors a few times, making huge dents in them, before suddenly stopping. Were they enough to hold him back, or was he just toying with me, Ashlei thought.

The Circus Master (who was carrying Keptis) and Carlene had managed to escape from the horde of Vampires by jumping from roof top to roof top, (or rather what was left of each roof top in most cases.) None of the three time travellers were really sure where they were going, they just wanted to get a bit of a distance between themselves and the Vampires.

Since they fled the square, literally hundreds of Vampires had started to emerge from practically every building and corner of the village,.

Carlene however quickly stopped on the latest building they had landed on. It was mostly intact, compared to the other buildings in the village.

“Carlene, what are you doing? Come on!” The Circus Master shouted.

“Hang on I think I’m picking up a scent. Its Florence, she’s down there.” Carlene replied.

Suddenly two new type of Vampires jumped onto the roof. They both had three heads, all long and serpent like, and 6 arms, whilst their skin was thick, armour plated and yellow.

“Go find her, I’ll hold these things off. Go now” The Circus Master said. Keptis and Carlene quickly jumped down to an alley between the two buildings whilst more and more Vampires jumped or flew onto the roof to attack the Circus Master.

The Circus Master pulled out a massive sword from his hat. It’s blade was made of fire just like Keptis flaming saw. The Vampires all attempted to dogpile on the Circus Master but his sword prevented any of them from getting close. Arms and tentacles and even the odd head from the attacking Vampires went flying all over the roof, as the Circus Master swung his sword back and forth.

“She’s in there, in the basement I can pick up her scent, only just. Come on” Carlene said.

Two Vampires however had picked up Carlene and Keptis scent and descended on either side of the alley. They were both tall and incredibly thin to the point where there were practically skeletons, whilst their faces were rotten and decaying. The monsters were both far stronger than their light frames would suggest, with the Vampire who attacked Carlene easily overpowering her, whilst the other Vampire managed to grab Keptis’ flaming saw by the handle and toss it out of his hand.

Carlene quickly bit the Vampire that pinned her in the throat, shocking it for a minute before she punched it in the stomach, the face and then flipped it over her shoulder onto the other Vampire.

Whilst the two Vampires were down Keptis used his saw to slice one of the Vampires heads off. The other Vampire however quickly jumped to its feet and struck Keptis, knocking him to the ground. Carlene attempted to fight the monster again, but this time it was too fast for her and delivered a flurry of punches to her stomach and face. Keptis however quickly went for the monsters legs whilst he was on the ground and sliced one of them off, before taking the monsters head off when it fell to the ground.

Using her Vampiric strength, Carlene quickly punched a hole in the wall, leading to the cellar in the house, which she and Keptis quickly fled through before more Vampires could pick up their scent.

In the cellar the two time travellers saw the remains of a young girl, literally ripped in half, just by the cage where Florence sat looking completely broken.

“Florence” Keptis whispered. “We’re here.”

“You have to get out of here its” before the Siren could finish her warning, a massive tentacle suddenly came bursting out of the ground and grabbed Carlene by the neck, before smashing her into a nearby wall. When the tentacle attempted to grab Keptis however, he managed to slice it off with his saw.

The creature the tentacle belonged to, the hideous Alpha Vampire Malstrom, burst out of the ground screaming in anger.

Keptis stabbed his into the monsters Malstrom’s chest, which caused the Alpha to fall to its knees in pain. However as he pulled the saw up to slice the monster up the middle, its blood splashed onto Keptis’ arms, burning him horribly.

Keptis dropped the saw and fell backwards in pain, whilst Malstrom’s tentacles slowly wrapped themselves around the Martian.

Florence again struggled to try and break the bars, but it was no use.

The Circus Master had managed to hold off the Vampires, with the roof now being covered in nothing but Vampire body parts and entrails. Suddenly however one of the monsters actually managed to stop the Circus Master’s sword dead in its tracks.

It was a large completely grey Vampire. It must have stood over 7 feet tall and it had piercing yellow eyes and massive fangs. The monster had managed to grab the flaming blade itself, which it then snapped in half.

The Circus Master quickly reached for his hat, but the giant creature thumped him in the chest sending him flying towards the edge of the building.

The monster then grabbed the hat and reached into it, but this proved to be a mistake however. Just like Carlene’s beehive, there was a booby trap system in the hat which fired various weapons into the Vampires hand.

Only one of the knives harmed the monster. A gold knife which became embedded in its hand. The Circus Master reached for the hat, but the monster pulled the gold knife out of its hand and stabbed the Circus Master in the heart, before getting him in a head lock. The Circus Master clawed in vain at the monsters arm, but the beasts hold around his neck grew tighter.

In the factory Ashlei had become lost. No one had set foot here for quite a long time, though the stench of misery and death was still everywhere. Ashlei had stayed by the door for a few minutes, but then when nothing happened she decided to look around for a weapon. She’d found a few crowbars, but nothing that would be particularly useful against a Vampire.

“Oh god Circus freaks where are you” she said bitterly whilst clutching her crowbar. “They said that creepy boy was supposed to be outside!”

Just then Ashlei heard a sound of glass breaking in the distance. “He’s here oh god.”

She had no idea where she could go. It was so dark and cluttered ahead and her vile brother could be around every corner.

“I was right” Brian’s voice came piercing through the darkness. “This is fun.”

“You monster.” She shouted back.

“Well of course I am. You’ve only just realised that?”

Ashlei couldn’t believe she had gotten herself into this situation. She should never have tried to take on a Vampire on her own. Ironically it had been because of her love for Brian. She was determined to be the one to free him from this nightmare. In a way she felt it was her only way of redemption.

“No” she thought, pulling herself together. “I’m not going to die in here, not at that thing wearing my brothers corpse’s hands.”

Ashlei ran through the dark room ahead, not even sure where she was going. She suddenly heard another screeching sound.

“He’s just toying with me. I need to get out of here now.” As she turned the corner however she suddenly bumped straight into Brian.

Brian batted the crowbar and easily restrained Ashlei. The monster prepared to sink his fangs into Ashlei’s neck, but she was able to escape by punching her brother in his burn wounds, which threw him for a few seconds.

Ashlei quickly grabbed her crowbar and shoved it straight into her brothers forhead ramming him into a nearby wall. The Vampire however quickly threw Ashlei about ten feet across the room, after which it then pulled the crowbar out of it’s forhead.

Brian threw the crowbar at Ashlei, who only managed to just avoid it. Ashlei then picked the crowbar up and hit her brother over the hit with it, as he attacked her. She knocked Brian to the ground and repeatedly hit him over the head, smashing his brains in. The monster however simply got up, hissing and slabbering at its former sister. Knowing she’d never be able to fight him off or even hurt him, Ashlei quickly ran in the opposite direction.

The Circus Master tried to dig his talons deep into the grey Vampires arm, but it barely made a mark. The Vampire literally laughed at the Circus Masters attempts to hurt him, as did the other five Vampires who gathered round to laugh at the Circus Masters plight.

As all seemed lost, a blue light enveloped the large grey Vampire from behind and though it struggled, the light pulled it away off of the roof.

Another blue light blasted the 5 Vampires in front of the Circus Master backwards off of the roof. The Circus Master then looked up to see Denika hovering above the building.

“Denika! And here I was trying to rescue you!” The Circus Master laughed as he went for his hat.

Denika quickly scooped the Circus Master up with her magic as more Vampires began to crawl up the building.

The two flew over the village  encased in a magical bubble.

“Where are we going?” The Circus Master asked.

“Marcozia. I followed him and saw that freak retreat to the ruins of church. I could sense something in there. That’s where he’s keeping the book. We have to get there now. I think he’s going to turn someone else into a new Alpha.”

“Well we should go back for Carlene, Florence and Keptis” The Circus Master responded.

“No time I’m afraid, if we don’t move now some other poor soul will become one of those monsters.”

Back in the basement, Carlene had managed to get the drop on Malstrom just as he was about to crush the life out of Keptis like he had done to the young girl.

She jumped on the Vampires back and repeatedly hit him over the head with a piece of concrete that had come off the wall, ironically when Malstrom had slammed Carlene into it.

The Alpha threw Carlene off again, but this time she landed on her feet.

Malstorm roared in anger at Carlene and tried to impale her with one of his tentacles, but Carlene’s reflexes were too fast and she managed to keep dodging the monsters strikes. Carlene was able to trick the Alpha by landing in front of the cage where Florence was imprisoned. When the Alpha tried to impale her, Carlene quickly jumped to and clung to the ceiling causing the Alpha to hit the bars instead. The Alpha’s strength knocked the bars down instantly. Though Florence was also knocked down too, she quickly got up and picked up one of the bars which she used to hit Malstrom in the face.

Florence was overcome with such rage towards the Alpha that she caught him off guard, and as he tried to fight back, Carlene started to hit the monster from behind with another slab. Carlene went for the monsters legs, whilst Florence struck the monster in the head over and over.

Malstrom however managed to wrap one tentacle around the pole and pulled it from Florence’s hand and then smashed it into Carlene’s face before standing up to confront Florence.

Florence still didn’t give up and jumped at Malstrom, delivering a flurry of punches to the Vampires face, though it quickly overpowered Florence.

Malstrom grabbed Florence by the neck with one hand and lifted her up against the wall. Keptis however used his flaming saw to slice off the arm Malstrom was using to hold Florence up. Some of his blood splashed on Florence, giving her minor burns, but not enough to deter her.

Keptis struck his saw into Malstroms head, but he was still so weak from the burns he didn’t have any strength to sink it in deep, and Malstrom knocked the Martian to the ground. Florence however kicked the monster with both feet in the back, knocking him over and then pulled Ketpis’ saw from the monsters head which she then rammed into the Alpha’s neck. Malstrom tried to pull himself up, but Carlene using the pole, Malstrom had hit her with, impaled the monster to the ground.

Florence sawed the monsters head clean off. Even though its blood splashed onto her hands and burned them, Florence was so overcome with rage, she fought through the pain until she killed the monster.

“Hopefully you’ll stay dead this time.” Florence muttered bitterly as she started to feel the pain from her burns, whilst Carlene helped Keptis up. “I’m okay” he said somewhat proudly.

“Trust me, I lived on a planet full of those things out there. I’ve been through worse. Thank you anyway.”

“No, thank you” Florence said as she tossed the Martian’s saw back to him.

“We need to get back to the Circus Master, he’s alone up there.” Carlene said.

When the threesome made it back to the roof however they saw it was deserted.

“Hes gone? He wouldn’t leave us.” Florence said with worry.

“I can’t smell any Vandal blood here.” Carlene tried to reassure her.

Suddenly the horde below noticed the three time travellers on the roof and started to scale the building.

“We need to get out of here, now.” Keptis shouted as he powered up his flaming saw.

“We need to find their prisoners.” Florence responded.

“They keep humans to lock up as food for the new recruits”

“How are we supposed to find them?” Keptis replied.

“You forget, we’re Vampires, we could easily pick up the scent of any humans that are left” Carlene said.

Three Vampires, consisting of one Octopoid Vampire, and two yellow Vampires quickly emerged over the side of the building.

“We need to go now” Carlene said as she jumped onto another building, carrying Keptis with her.

The Circus Master and Denika meanwhile had reached the Church. Through the broken window, the two could see Marcozia holding the Book of Khastran itself that created each new breed of Vampire, with two young men and a young woman sat close by, tied up.”

“You make me laugh.” Marcozia said, mockingly to the young woman.

“We both know who you really are, yet here you’re pretending to be vulnerable and weak. Trust me. You’ll love being one of us.”

Denika fired a magical blast at the book, knocking it out of the Vampire’s hands and across the room.

“Not very smart, leaving yourself, one average Vampire to guard your book.” Denika taunted the former hunter before blasting an energy beam at the Marcozia.

The Vampire however managed to deflect Denika’s beam back at her and sent the witch flying backwards to the other end of the Church.

“I’m not an ordinary Vampire. I was once like you. I spent my whole life fighting the supernatural remember. I know how to deflect a simple magical blast like that.”

The Circus Master pulled a copper blade out of his hat. He knew Marcozia’s breed of Vampire and their weaknesses well. They weren’t among the strongest, but Marcozia seemed confident that he could beat The Circus Master even unarmed.

The Circus Master tried to slash Marcozia in the face, but the monster was too quick and kicked the knife out of the Vandals hand. With another kick he knocked his hat off of the Circus Masters head.

When the Circus Master tried to reach for his hat, Marcozia, grabbed the Vandal and flipped him over his shoulder.

The Circus Master jumped to his feet and unsheathed his claws. Every one of his strikes however missed Marcozia, who delivered several blows to the Circus Master’s face and stomach, before grabbing him by the neck and throwing the Vandal to the other end of the room, through some debris.

Before the Circus Master could pull himself up, Marcozia jumped on him from across the room, and pummelled his enemy into submission.

“Whether I’m a human or a Vampire, I still love killing Vandals.” The former hunter said as he lifted a stake.

To Be Continued

 

 

 

 

 

The Circus Master: The Book of the Vampires: Part 6: Damned Souls

 

Florence awoke in a smelly, dark, wet cellar behind several bars.

On the outside of her cage she could see blood stained all over the floor and the furniture, which consisted of a few chairs and a table. She tried to break the bars with her Vampire strength, but they were too strong for her.

Florence noticed a young girl, crying and hiding at the far end of the cage. As she went to comfort her she could see the girl, who was no older than 14, was covered in cuts and bruises.

“There were 12 of us.” She whimpered to Florence. “I’ve been here for 2 weeks, and each time they take one us outside, I can hear their screaming above. It lasts for hours each time. The last time was different however. They took one of us, a young boy, and they.”

“They what.” Florence said as she tried to comfort the poor girl.

“They read from some book, and they, they turned him into a monster. He tore another three of us apart. They’ve left me here for 2 days. I don’t know when they’re coming for me but.”

“Don’t worry, I’ll protect you.” Florence said as she hugged the poor girl.

“Oh really? You couldn’t even protect yourself. Would you be in our cage otherwise?”

It was the Alpha Vampire that had Florence had fought in the hospital. Some parts of its face were still badly burned, and once again Florence felt there was a depressing sense of familiarity to the beasts face.

Florence pushed the girl behind her and stood her ground against the monster.

“I’m not going to beg, as I know that’ll only make it worse, can I just ask you who were before you became this?”

The monster smiled. “I believe you once knew me as the butcher of Ivory.”

“Malstrom” Florence said.

“I don’t understand? They hanged you years ago?”

“The book can also bring back the dead it seems. They’re picking the best and brightest for their new army.”

“Even by their standards I wouldn’t have thought they’d want you. Surely even Vampires know you’re scum.”

“They don’t judge me unlike you bitches. You all thought I killed that girl, you lot threw the noose around my neck without ever even knowing the truth.”

“What do you mean.”

“That girl they hung me for. I didn’t do it.”

“You’re lying”

“Why would I lie now? Its not like you or anyone else can hurt me. I can take what I want, but I assure you, I did not kill that girl.”

Florence thought for a minute. Was it possible this monster recognised her too, and was just playing with her?

“So what you’re saying you were just some poor misunderstood guy that we all formed a lynch mob against. Blamed for killing his parents, and his wife?”

“Oh no I killed all three of them” Malstrom said in an extremely casual way. “But the last one I was innocent of! Its not fair. I was hung for something I didn’t even commit.”

“Well” Florence continued. “If it makes you feel any better I’ll make you pay for the things you have actually done.”

The Vampire smiled. “Oh really? Tell you what, if you can beat me here, I’ll let the little brat go.”

The young girl clung to Florence.

“Please he’s the worst of them all.” The girl said as she held onto the Siren.

Florence wasn’t sure what to do. She knew she couldn’t take him in a fair fight. Still maybe she could trick the Demon and buy the girl enough time to get free.

The giant Vampire opened the door with its tentacles and then battered Florence to the back of the cage as she tried to fight, before wrapping its tentacle around her feet and pulling her out of the cage. The monster threw Florence to the other side of the room and then punched her into a wall. When it tried to make another move against her, Florence jumped over its back and grabbed the table. With her super strength she managed to life it, and smashed it over the Alpha’s head, before using one of the planks from the broken table, to repeatedly hit the Alpha over the head again and again.

“Run now” Florence shouted to the young girl, who quickly obliged. The Alpha however batted Florence away, and wrapped its tentacle around the young girl and lifted her into the air.

“You loose I’m afraid.” The monster taunted. Florence however jumped onto the Alpha’s back and and dug her claws into the Alphas burnt flesh. It hurt both of them as its boiling blood hurt Florence’s fingers.

The Alpha however simply swung the young girl back into Florence knocking her off. It then grabbed Florence and threw her back into the cage and locked the door.

Florence tried to pull the bars down, but it was no use. She was forced to watch as the Alpha grabbed the young girl and started to slowly crush her to death.

You’ll be safer in here. Carlene said to Ashlei who didn’t respond at all. Carlene had taken Ashlei back to the Circus. Its magics were a lot more powerful than those that protected Carlene’s mansion and could prevent any Vampire or anyone else from entering. With her brother on the loose Carlene felt that the two children were safer here. Carlene was also worried what the angry villagers would do after all of the commotion involving Brian.

Daniel who was still out cold, was secured in Denika’s magical chains at the corner. They still didn’t know if he was going to change into a Vampire or not, so they had to be sure.

Carlene tried to comfort Ashlei assuring her that they wouldn’t be long in dealing with the Vampires (even if she didn’t believe it.)

Ashlei however still didn’t respond. Carlene didn’t know if the young girl was going to stay put or not, but sadly she didn’t have time to focus on Ashlei. The Vampires needed to be stopped.

Outside Denika had created a magic bubble that would encase all of the Circus Folk (except for the Strange Boy who was left on guard) and allow them to travel much quicker to Lourouse. They reached the village in about 5 mins thanks to Denika’s magics, which would have taken 4 times longer otherwise. They were cutting it fine to the time limit the Vampires had given them, but Denika had needed all the time she could to try and master the magics in Carlene’s beehive.

When they arrived at the village it was seemingly deserted. The village stunk so badly they could smell it from miles away. It was the stench of the Vampires themselves. Most Vampire breeds had an absolutely foul stench, so when that many congregated together, it was almost toxic.

Many of the buildings had crumbled to bits, or at least looked worn down though there was still a gigantic church right in the middle of the wretched place that looked more or less intact.

Denika took the Circus folk down into a square right in the middle of the town.

The Circus Master stood in front of the others calling out to the Vampires. A few minutes passed before Vampires from various different breeds started to emerge from all the corners of the square.

There were at least 6 different types of Vampires, all utterly grotesque. They included three blue skinned Vampires, with plated skin, green eyes and no hair. 2 yellow skinned Vampires with long flowing red hair and red eyes. Two Vampires with massive bat like wings and hideous snout like faces and long flowing black hair. 3 Vampires each with eight tentacles, flailing around and large rock like heads. And finally a woman who had a greenish hue to her skin, massive blue hair, and large claws. She looked the most human of all the monsters there, but there was something cruel about her that went beyond even being a Vampire.

The monsters all had blood dripping from their fangs. They hissed and snarled at the Circus folk who huddled together in fear except for the Circus Master who stood his ground.

“Even just looking at you is enough to make me sick Vandal.” Said a strange figure who emerged from behind the two winged Vampires.

Unlike all the other Vampires he looked almost completely human, though he was still incredibly thin and pale. Carlene instantly recognised him as Marcozia.

“I still can’t believe its true” Carlene said.

“Well if it isn’t the traitor.” Marcozia sneered.

“Oh so suddenly you’re a born again Vampire? Unbelievable. I remember when you used to give me shit for being a Vampire. It was all, a Vampire can never change, I’ll always be a monster no matter what. Yet now I’m a traitor?”

Marcozia laughed. “Well you see that’s the thing, Vampires, hunters, Vandals, Demons. They’re all just trying to survive. They’ll delude themselves into thinking that they have the moral high ground, but ultimately everyone just roots for the team they are a part of. When I was a human, I was on their side and wanted to kill every Vampire. Now that I’m a Vampire? I’ll be just as dogmatic against my former team. You on the other hand Carlene? You’re an idiot. You still cling to the memory of what you once were and fight for a side that wants to kill you. I’ve never realised just how sad you were until now.”

The Vampires words stung Carlene. She didn’t doubt that what she was doing was right, but Marcozia’s words did remind her of how no matter what good deeds she did the overwhelming majority of people would only ever see her as a Vampire.

Marcozia continued. “You do know that I’m not going to release your friend, right?”

“A Vampire that doesn’t keep his word? Shocking!” Keptis said.

The Vampires moved closer to the Circus folk, whilst the Circus Master still stood his ground.

“I admire your courage. I didn’t think either Vampires or Vandals were capable of it.” Marcozia said.

The Circus Master responded by bowing in a mocking fashion and dropping his large top hat on the ground, upside down. Two of the yellow Vampires looked into the hat out of curiosity and saw nothing. Suddenly however the Circus Master reached into it and pulled out two silver blades, both coated in holy water and started slashing at the two Vampires. Their wounds both sizzled, though he wasn’t sure if it was the holy water or the silver that had hurt them.

The Circus Master quickly grabbed the hat and started throwing weapons to the other Circus Folk, including Keptis’ flaming chainsaw. Keptis managed to slice the head off of one of the blue Vampires as it attacked him, whilst Denika blasted the dark skinned Vampire several feet backwards with her magic. Carlene meanwhile had been given an axe which she used to hack at the Vampires. She cut one of the winged beasts legs off and slice the arm off of the blue haired Vampire.

Unfortunately however the yellow skinned Vampires flame red hair was able to stretch out and grab both the Circus Master and the Carlene from behind, enveloping them both.

The hair was so strong that neither could break free. Denika who was hovering about 20 feet in the air above blasted the yellow Vampire that had grabbed Carlene and the Circus Master. Unfortunately another yellow Vampire used its hair to smack Denika in the chest, sending her flying across the village. The Circus Master however managed to catch the Yellow Vampire off guard and stabbed it through the heart with a copper knife, killing it instantly. The Circus Master knew this breed in the far future and so he knew its weaknesses.

The other Yellow Vampire tried to grab The Circus Master, but Carlene tackled it from behind. Before the Vampire could defend itself, The Circus Master tossed one his knives to Carlene who stabbed it through the Vampires heart.

Keptis meanwhile fought off the tentacled Vampires. He sliced off a few of the monsters tentacles with his flaming saw, but there were so many arms attacking him, that they eventually managed to knock the saw out of Keptis’ hand. One of the Vampires then wrapped its tentacles around Keptis’ throat and brought him to his knees. The monster prepared to strike another tentacle through the last Martian’s chest, but the Circus Master stabbed one of his silver blades into the monsters tentacle, and then grabbed Keptis, though not before Keptis was able to pick up his flaming saw.

The Circus Master jumped over twenty feet in the air onto one of the few remaining buildings, Carlene quickly followed him.

“We need to find Denika and Florence now” The Circus Master said.

Ashlei hadn’t moved for ages. She couldn’t muster up the energy for anything. Not that there was anything to do mind you. Daniel hadn’t woken up. He occasionally groaned, but he was still completely out of it.

Just then however the seemingly never ending silence was interrupted by an all too familiar voice. It was Brian.

“Ashlei, Ashlei please, help me. That thing its gone now, I don’t know for how long, please!”

To Be Continued