"Fate is upon us!" This was what was yelled out the next day, I was confused for a moment as my allies gathered up around the embers of the fire. My eyes were heavy from working most of the night on my core experiment, getting overly excited when I finally created one working product. The process at the moment seemed to be about 50% luck and 50% skill.

Stretching out on one of the logs, forcing blood to pump through my sore and tired body I noticed something that concerned me. It was silent other than our own actions, anyone who has been inside a forest knows it might be quiet at times but it's never completely silent. "Everyone, father supplies and into the trees we have to get off the ground!"

The little demons immediately started tearing up the campsite covering up our tracks as each of us grabbed a bag jumping into the trees. They all knew I had a six sense for danger so no one questioned it, but my danger sense was telling me we'd all be dead if we didn't move now.

Several minutes passed, all of us controlling our breaths to the bare minimum ready for anything before we felt it. The ground started to rumble in a rhythmic pattern before we heard drums, Joshua whispering beside me, "These are the drums of war, demons use these drums to gather up troops."

"Demons?" I immediately thought of the demon king I had talked to, a frown coming to my lips. There couldn't be a connection between the two could there? I shook my head, if he had the ability to track me he would have done it a long time ago. "How often do they attack human settlements?"

"It isn't common this far from the.. " he rose a finger hushing all of us.

It almost looked like the forest floor turned into a sea of black fur and small bright red armored beasts with wings. Thousands of the creatures passed under us and all of us turned pale as we watched. Yelling in another language was heard, with laughing following as they passed.

'Diplomacy feature engaged, language demonkin translating.'

Suddenly the unintelligible hisses and clicks became words. "Hunt hunt, humans offend the great king Farkle! Many rewards, survive or die! No, no let us fly! Fly and blaze, evolve to be devils one day!" I felt a sharp sting as it sunk into my heart that I was the cause of such a commotion.

This chant filled the air like a military cadence as their giant rats charged forward without regard for anything in their way. My face went more pale as I heard them, my knuckles white as I clung to my daggers. "Who is Farkle?"

Joshua looked at me surprised, "He is one of the five kings of pride that are to become groomed to a devil. Where did you hear that name?"

"Can't you hear the chanting? They work for the demon king Farkle." I could feel something moving in me as I heard the drums, anger was swirling in my veins wanting to lash out at my enemies. My body filled with adrenaline felt as though my body would only cool down when covered in their blood. I felt my rationality almost fading before the sigils on my hands lit up taking away some of the heat.

I hadn't noticed due to my raging emotions but my body started spilling out a red aura, my body temperature hitting the point that my breath was easily seen in front of me. "The army can take care of these imps right?"

No one answered me, all of them seemed to be staring at the rock in Zack's hand. It pulsed once with a dim red glow, then another, and another. When the third glow came Zack visibly deflated, "One pulse means come back home, the second means wait, the third.." he swallowed, looking at the stone with sadness. "Means abandon the guild, there is no hope."

I grabbed Zack by the shoulder staring into his eyes hard, "How often are they wrong?"

Zack shook his head, not answering.

"How often Zack?" I hissed, trying to keep my anger in check but failing.

"Never." He finally answered, his eyes watering and his voice shaking. "They never send out this command unless 75% of the population is going to die in the area they're at. Their strongest guild members are going to use teleportation circles to escape, making that number rise even more."

"We need to help." I felt a hand hit me on the cheek, and I stared at Zack.

"You think you're the only one with family in the city? We all are about to lose everyone precious to us. We.. can not help. We'll only be a hindrance." Zack was barely stopping himself from yelling in my face, his body trembling. "Do you think I want to abandon everyone? We need to live on, we're too weak to do anything right now, it's the rule of this world."

Jade touched my shoulder and I pulled away from her touch like it was fire. Her eyes were filled with hopelessness and sadness, I couldn't let myself feel those emotions, there had to be hope, there had to be. Wasn't that the last thing in the box once all the sins were released? Hope?

Each moment that passed, seeing more and more demons slowly grinded away at that small bit of hope that still burned in my heart. After thirty minutes there was nothing left, only emptiness that came with the realization that even if you did anything it would be for nothing.

The demons under us were getting more and more scarce, the drummers already have passed us. My eyes had a hint of anger and insanity in them as I let go of Zack. "Then I will at least release this anger on the stragglers."

If I didn't at least kill one of these creatures, I felt like I'd forever curse myself as a coward. Afraid to even seek out my vengeance even when I had the power to do so, my actions may be meaningless in this battle but not in the next.

"What.." Before he could finish his question I smiled sadly, he could see that there was no stopping me or I would be a broken man from here on out. "Remember if I say run.."

"Of course, you're still my guide so guide me to my revenge, and I'll be forever in your debt." Reaching out both hands towards the twenty or so demons coming towards us I whispered, "Castle walls, let me protect at least one person."

The sound of glass shattering filled the air as something forced itself into existence, a grey wall a hundred feet high and a hundred feet wide appeared out of nowhere. The giant rats couldn't react in time and crashed against the wall, snapping their necks on impact. Knowing that they wouldn't get reinforcements any time soon I jumped from the top of the wall, a pair of wings spreading from my back as three claws dig into my robe to slow my decent.

"Enemy attack!" They yelled fearfully seeing a shadow with black wings coming down at them. A red aura covered the figure that usually only came from their own kind.

'Bloodlust upgrade unlocked for free!'

'Bloodlust evolved to Battlelust for free!'

As the red aura shrunk to the point that the red glow was only in my eyes, they did not feel any better, their bodies now covered in sweat seeing an angel of death descending from the sky. "Ru-"

Blood, and screams were the only things that I could make out in that moment as the demons tried to take their broken bodies and run away. I let my thoughts relax in that moment the feeling at one with each of my actions, each blade stroke like a blush painting the air in crimson.

"Weak, weak, weak.." Even with my enemies being killed all around me I could only feel helpless, knowing that hundreds of thousands of imps were already heading towards the kingdom. Tears gathered in my eyes mixing with the blood on my cheeks, these were my tears of blood.

Activating the sigil once more, I let the battlelust spill through the connection before cutting it off. It was petty, and stupid but I'm sure he got the message that I would be coming for him.

In the end I gave myself over to the battlelust, every step a dance that brought me closer to the death of another demon. Their deaths didn't lessen my feelings of regret though, sadly I learned the hard way my actions had major consequences.

Ten minutes later I was leaning against a tree, my body filled with wounds, covered in blood that was mostly not my own. White puffs of my breath curled in the air as I stared up at the sky, hearing the footsteps of my allies rushing towards me.

"I will get stronger, for every death that this kingdom suffered I will personally kill twenty of your men. My enemies shall fear each step I take." Speaking to the moon above me, I let out a sigh. "Until then I will bare the weight of my actions."

"A new king has been born!" Laughed a crow with three legs, "Fate blesses us all!" It flew through the air with a mad cackle, the starlight glistening on its feathers as it opened its third eye.


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