The Devil, The Witch, and The Wicked World of Delirith
Somewhere in the exiled world of Delirith, somewhere in the desert of Kaandur, and somewhere in the town of Honorbound, the fourth and final event of the auction fest was about to begin in the auditorium of the central town hall.
“So, what will they be bidding this time?” Mako asked Copper, as the trio took a seat on the backest row of the auditorium.
“I’m not sure, but from what I’ve heard, only ONE item will be auctioned.”
“Just one?” Fyra commented in surprise, “With all that waiting and this place, they’d made it as if this last one will be the grand finale. But they’re seriously gonna auction only ONE?”
“Whatever that ONE thing is, it better be something good,” Mako replied. However, a worried expression grew on the gentleman’s flesh-side face.
“We have yet to confirm, but I’ve heard some rumours among fellow participants regarding the item for auction. Needless to say, I find it rather unpleasant.”
Mako was about to ask Copper to be more specific in his answer when the event abruptly began. The auditorium lights dimmed and the red stage curtain unveiled. Taking center stage appeared the blue-skinned auctioneer, Zed, and his nine-feet tall robot ringman. Bringing with them a pedestal, and on it was the auctioned item, currently covered under a red sheet.
Zed drew out his mic, blew off the dust, gave everyone a smile and announced-
“Bastards and Gentleman, I, Zed Leppelin, welcome all of you for our fourth and final auction of this festival!!!”
His lively announcement earned a huge round of applause and some whistling from the crowd-filled auditorium.
“I’m sure all of you have heard it by now, and yes, I for one confirm that tonight, only ONE item shall be sold to the highest bidder! That’s right people, we booked this whole place just to sell ONE!!”
“Now you might be wondering at this point, what could possibly be THAT valuable to prepare all of this for!? Will this next item just be a waste of time for everyone? Hoho! If you think so then buckle up your seat ladies and roughruggers, for beneath this red sheet is none other than most valuable element in our planet!-”
Zed pulled down the red sheet unveiling the content beneath dramatically. The whole audience gasped, shocked at what they witnessed laid in front on the center stage.
“It can’t be-” Sir Copperhead grew speechless, along with everyone else save for Mako and Fyra who sat there confused by everyone’s reaction.
“Sorry, but what exactly is that thing?” Mako interrupted.
“That’s right ladies and gentlemen! The very object that brought our forefathers and shackled their generations to this wicked planet, now in front of your eyes!-”
[ DELIRNIUM ORE ]
It glows in power!
The purple-blue ore glowed violently, illuminating nearly the whole auditorium despite it being no bigger than a toilet sink. Zaps of electricity pulsed through the crystal like object as its mere presence radiated otherworldly energy. The whole crowd stood silent, awestruck by what laid in front of them. Immediately they all understood the purpose of separating this auction event from the three before, save for Mako and Fyra who simply sat there still confused.
“So, uh… What’s the fuss with that thing?” Mako asked Copper.
“Well, simply put, Delirnium is a mineral of great energy. A hundred grams of it could sustain a whole city for years-” Copperhead pulled out an opera glass to give the ore a better look- “some even claimed that taking in the raw energy of a Delirnium could grant people supernatural abilities! Even ludicrous are claims that the mineral is a key to controlling time and space itself...”
“Dang…” Mako and Fyra spoke at the same time.
“Dang indeed…” Copper replied. “Anyways, we NEED to get our hands on that ore!”
“Eh? Why so?” Fyra asked, but was hushed by the gentleman as the auctioneer was about to make another announcement.
“Because we all know how valuable this ore is, there will be no starting price for this auction! Everyone is allowed to give in all they got! Don’t be shy! Just shout your price and wage war against everyone here in this room!-”
“MAY THE HIGHEST BIDDER WIN!!!”
The crowd immediately went wild with everyone shouting and hollering their bid, raising the price to ridiculous amounts.
“FIVE THOUSAND SCRAPS!-”
“SEVEN THOUSAND AND FIFTY!!-
“TEN THOUSAND TIMES TWO!!!-”
They all waved their number tickets up high trying to get Zed’s attention. On the other hand, the auctioneer had a pretty wide grin pointing and thanking any person that offered a higher price.
“FIFTY FIVE THOUSAND SCRAPS!!” Sir Copperhead shouted.
Half an hour passed and the bidded price had reached millions in number. Despite that, there’s no sign of slowing down among the participants that kept on shouting higher and higher prices, including one of our protagonists, Sir Copperhead.
“Dude! Do you even have that much scraps?” Fyra questioned.
Even though everyone kept on shouting their number, only a small few actually had the means to pay it. Zed knew about this, thus he carefully picked among the crowd those he believed to have the scraps that they shouted. This includes Sir Copperhead of course, thanks to his steampunk-gentleman fashion wear.
“A HUNDRED MILLION!!-” a rich looking participant shouted, before he got shot on his chest out of nowhere.
The whole room became silent as everyone turned their attention to the perpetrator of the gunshot. It was a scummy bandit, with a saw blade stuck on his head like a metallic mohawk. The saw blade bandit turned and pointed his pistol at Zed.
“I’M DONE SPENDING SCRAP FOR Y’ALL! I’M GONNA GET THAT ORE FOR MYSELF WITH MY GUN!!!”
The bandit fired his pistol without hesitation, but the bullet was suddenly deflected right as it reached the stage. Apparently, there was a force-field installed between Zed and the rest of the audience in front. The auctioneer smiled and gestured to his robot, who immediately fired a quick burst of high-caliber rounds on the bandit with its arm-gun.
“Bandits and motherf***s, if there’s anything we learned throughout this fest is that a Delirithian auction is filled with surprises. That man did not die in vain, for he reminded us who we truly are as the inhabitants of this wicked planet.”
“Screw money! Screw being civilized! If we want something we don’t pay for it, we kill those who hold it, and claim it as our own! So I propose to you kind shits, let us put down our tickets and hold high our guns!-”
“MAY THE LAST MAN STANDING GETS THE ORE!!!”
The whole crowd hollered in delight as they all pulled out their weapons and immediately went after each other’s neck. Gunfire after gunfire echoed through the auditorium, now a complete warzone with everyone desperately shooting, bombing, and throwing hands (literally) at each other in a desperate attempt to claim the all-powerful Delirnium ore.
In the midst of it all, Sir Copperhead was currently hiding under the seat in front of him alongside Mako and Fyra.
“Well, that turned out great for ya!” Fyra sarcastically remarked.
“Yeah... I guess we are in a bit of a predicament right now.”
The trio got up and immediately ducked once more when a rocket launcher (yes, the whole launcher) flew right past them before crashing and bombing two/three men upon impact.
As all of this played out, somewhere on the corner of the auditorium stood the horned-reptilian man that challenged Fyra for the auctioned shin guard back during the first auction. He took cover after shooting a round or two, before texting a message on a handheld communication device.
“The Delirnium and the auctioneer are here boss!” the reptile man texted, in which he received a response that ordered him to take position.
Putting down his comms device, the reptile man noticed Fyra and her two companions as the devil noticed him as well. He gave Fyra a nod and gestured to her to take cover. Confused but compliant, Fyra pushed Mako and Copper down as the trio hid underneath their front seats for the umpteenth time.
An armoured bus crashed through the walls behind the trio out of nowhere. The bus was filled with armed bandits, and from the roof hatch emerged a fearsome face immediately recognized by everyone in the room.
“I’M COMING FOR YOUR HEAD MISTER AUCTIONEER!!”
[ SANDKING ANUBRAX ]
What is he doing here?
Anubrax jumped off the bus and charged straight towards Zed. In panic, the auctioneer ordered his robot to open fire at the Sandking. The robot launched two missiles directly at Anubrax and much to Zed’s horror, he simply swiped away both rockets with his bare hand.
The robot fired high-caliber rounds at Anubrax, who simply shielded it with his force-field summoning cape. None of the robot’s actions slowed down the Sandking who at this point arrived right in front of the force-field protected stage.
“YOU’RE NOT GETTING AWAY THIS TIME ZED!!”
Anubrax clenched his fist. With one mighty swing, he punched the force-field with all his might.
The whole room was in awe, the sand-bois inside the bus cheered, and Zed watched in horror as the force-field capable of withstanding tank-busting missiles cracked and shattered by the Sandking’s mighty punch.
“Robot! Get us out of here!” Zed ordered in panic, shoving the Delirnium ore into a sack, carrying it away as he climbed onto his robot’s back. The robot instantly took flight and crashed through the auditorium’s ceiling as they both made their escape.
“Don’t let him get away Mako-Fyra! We must catch up on him!” Copper ordered, flinched as two more buses suddenly crashed into the auditorium.
“Why’d we have to do that!?” Mako shouted his question. “Why’d you want that ore so badly!?”
“Listen, I’ve said before that Delirnium grants people powers right? Well, we can’t have that going around at pretty much ANYONE in this room, especially him-” Copper pointed at Anubrax, uppercutting an unlucky man all the way to the ceiling- “It’s best that I obtain it! For my intention is none other than to destroy it!”
“How can you assure us that? What if you’re planning to use the Delirnium for yourself!?” Fyra asked.
“That’s the reason why I insist on bringing you two tonight. If I ever go power crazy while holding the Delirnium or something, I want you two to shoot my head off! No hesitation! We must not let Delirnium fall into anyone’s hand!!”
Mako and Fyra were surprised by the gentleman’s determination. His speech convinced the duo to help him, thus Mako quickly digistructed his Silverbolt and the duo immediately took off. They rode past the crowd and crashed right through the wall in front.
“ENEMY TAILING US. 50 YARDS BEHIND.”
“What!?” Zed turned around upon hearing his robot’s announcement. There he saw shining under the moonlight, Mako and Fyra hot on his trail on their silver hoverbike.
“Ugh- Those two kids. Robot! Finish them off!”
The robot turned his body around while swapping rocket thrusters to his front side, allowing it to maintain its flight path by flying backwards while its vision set to the chasing duo.
Immediately, dozens of micro-missiles were launched from pods all over the robot’s body to the duo. Mako swerved Silverbolt left and right dodging the missiles, while Fyra tried to shoot down the robot with her SMG.
Not long after, the duo heard a honk coming from their right side. It was Sir Copperhead, driving a steampunk-ish looking convertible with a sack seated on his side.
“Take this you two!” Copper tossed the sack as Fyra successfully caught it. She opened the sack and found it filled with the items they had purchased in the auction; the portable turret, the invi-cape, and the fire-shooting shin guards.
“Thanks!” Fyra shouted, quickly putting on the shin guards and clipped the invi-cape on Mako’s back.
“You two best hurry on! Anubrax and his gang are catching up from behind!”
Just as Copper stated, not far behind was Anubrax’s convoy, consisting of one main bus rode by the Sandking, two smaller buses on both the main one’s sides, and dozens of hoverbike riders passing through the three catching up to Copperhead and the Silverbolt duo.
“I’ll try to distract them as best as I can!”
Copper got up from his seat and pulled out two belt-fed machine guns. Kicking the 'autopilot' lever for his car, Copper proceeded to open fire on the pursuing riders. Bullets rained from the convertible exploding pursuing hoverbikes one after another. Despite his valiant effort though, several riders managed to slip through Copper's bullet hell and caught up to Mako and Fyra.
One unfortunate rider instantly received a chained crossbow bolt to the head. Fyra pulled the dead rider down from his bike and chugged Mako's cubic 'familiar' right at his body. The cube stuck itself on it and transformed into a turret, shooting down other riders as the dead body continued to be dragged onwards as it became a mobile platform for the turret.
With the threat behind them dealt with, there was still the issue of a big flying robot firing its weapons at our protagonists. Both its arms and shoulder attachments turned into a gatling gun, firing away hundreds of high-caliber rounds at Mako and Fyra. As the witch drove his bike left and right to dodge the bullets, an idea struck Mako's mind.
"Hide under my cape Fyra!"
"Like this?" Fyra raised Mako's invi-cape and covered herself beneath it.
"Yeah! Like that! Now, don't move." Mako activated the cape by turning a gear on its brooch. Immediately, Mako, Fyra, and the entirety of the Silverbolt disappeared from sight.
"NO THREAT SIGHTED. TARGET HAS BEEN ELIMINATED. RESUMING NORMAL FLIGHT POSITION"
"That's not how it works you iron buffoon- AGH!! I should've installed heat sensors on you, you overglorified tin can!"
Meanwhile, Mako and Fyra sighed a breath of relief seeing the robot turned its back on them. Though the invi-cape ceased the robot’s attack, there was still the issue of catching up to the flying machine currently 50-feet above the air. On the other hand, the Silverbolt was only two feet above the air.
“Any idea how we’re gonna get up there?” Mako asked Fyra. The one-horned devil squinted her eyes when something caught her sight far front.
“That rock! We can use it as a ramp!” Fyra told him.
“Alright! Then hold on to your butt!-”
Mako stomped the accelerator pedal of his bike, instantly speeding the Silverbolt onwards at hundreds of miles per hour. Fyra held tightly to Mako as they both braced themselves to soar the night skies.
“Uhhh... Mako, we missed the rock.”
“I know dammit! It’s hard to see where we are when we’re invisible!”
Right at this moment, a whistle-like sound boomed the sky out of nowhere. The duo and Zed turned and were shocked by the sight of a huge glowing ball of energy flying straight towards their position.
“You aimed a bit too low, sir.”
“I KNOW!!” Anubrax shouted to his subordinate.
Mako speeded his bike in panic as the energy ball was seen crashing down towards him and Fyra. They managed to dodge barely Anubrax’s gauss cannon blast, but the impact sent the duo flying off their Silverbolt, soaring the skies at great speed heading straight for Zed and his flying robot.
The auctioneer was caught off guard as he witnessed Mako falling right above and in front of him. In a slow-mo moment, the witch pointed his Boomthorn directly at Zed’s surprised face.
“Oh come one!” Mako crashed straight to the ground without firing a single shot from his jammed shotgun.
On the other hand, Fyra didn’t get pushed far enough from the blast compared to Mako. She stretched her right arm in an attempt to grab the robot’s leg but fell short for a mere meter less. It was at this time though, she was reminded about her powered shin guard.
Fyra clicked her heels and immediately a powerful stream of fire blasted from her shin guards down her feet, thrusting her upwards and onwards like a rocket. She stretched her arm onwards until finally, she succeeded in reaching the robot’s leg.
“Haha! I did it!” Fyra cheered delightly. The celebration was cut short though when a pistol pointed directly on her greeted her sight.
“Blithering idiots! Always so determined to get your dirty hands on this ore!”
Zed fired his pistol while his other arm was hanging strongly on his robot. Fyra ducked for cover as the shot missed completely. Bullet after bullet, Zed open fired recklessly at Fyra, but shooting while hanging onto a robot flying at 200+ miles per hour proved to be a great burden for an accurate shot.
Missed after missed shot, Zed finally ran out of bullets which made him angrily throw his gun at Fyra, which also missed. The devil climbed her way closer to the auctioneer when yet another whistling sound was heard thundering the sky.
Both turned their attention to the source of the sound. This time, the projectile was not an energy ball, but heading straight towards them both was an oversized cleaver, shaped almost like a boomerang and had chainsaw blades.
Oh, and there’s tons of dynamite sticks strapped on to it too.
“HAHA! I TOLD YA BOIS I’M A PRO ‘RANG SHARPSHOOTAH!!”
Anubrax’s men gave their king a huge round of applause for his accurate throw from nearly 100 meters away. The cleaver-chainsaw-boomerang thing (let's call it Chain-a-rang) flew back to its owner’s hand, no longer strapped on any form of explosives.
Back to Zed and Fyra, they both crashed to the ground alongside burning debris of Zed’s destroyed robot. Both struggled to get up after a rather violent fall, but Zed strengthened his heart as he tried crawling away with the sack containing the Delirnium ore in his hand.
Soon enough, Copperhead’s car arrived at the crash site with both the gentleman and Mako whom Copper picked up along the way after the witch’s fall. Mako quickly attended Fyra while Copper fired a warning shot near Zed’s feet with a sleeve gun.
“End of the line Zed! Hand us the ore or be prepared to headbutt this next bullet-”
Copper’s speech was cut short when a bullet shot his gun out of nowhere, disarming the gentleman. The four of them were greeted by the horned-reptile man, pointing his revolver at Copper. A split second later, blinding headlights shone behind the reptile man.
Anubrax’s convoy had arrived.
“NO MORE RUNNING YOU SLY FOX!!”
Anubrax hopped off the bus roof and went straight for Zed. He snatched the sack of Delirnium and shoved the helpless auctioneer down. Unveiling the sack’s content, Anubrax lifted the glowing purple-blue ore proudly as strobes of electricity pulsed violently across the mineral.
The trio and Zed watched in despair, the sand-bois hollered in delight, and the Sandking took a deep breath. Immediately, Anubrax smashed the ore to the ground.
“Wha- How could it-” Copper stared in disbelief. The same could be said for Mako and Fyra, for all that’s left of the great Delirnium was a million shattered pieces.
“But- it’s- it’s supposed to be unbreakable!” Copper exclaimed. “A Delirnium ore could withstand great amounts of force! It should not shatter just like that!”
“YOU’RE RIGHT, MOUSTACHE MAN. BUT I’M NOT HERE FOR THE ORE-” Anubrax turned to Zed and lifted him up with a choke- “YOU SURE HAVE THE GUTS SELLING FAKE ORES IN MY TURF! DO YOU HAVE ANY IDEA HOW MANY PESKY BASTARDS YOU’VE BROUGHT INTO MY LAND CUZ OF YOUR SHIT!?”
Zed didn’t reply. How could he when his windpipe was crushed by the Sandking’s vice grip.
“CAN’T WAIT TO SEE YOUR HEAD SKINNED AND STAKED ON MY WARSTOMPA…” Anubrax spoke ominously, earning a terrified gulp from a doomed Zed. “LET’S SCRAM BOIS! WE’VE GOT WHAT WE NEED! TIME TO PAY THOSE SKULLIES A VISIT!!”
With that, Anubrax and his men left the scene with Zed in his grip, but not before stopping at Mako and Fyra right as the Sandking passed them, having recognized their faces before.
“YOU TWO! I WOULD’VE KILLED YA RASCALS RIGHT HERE RIGHT NOW, BUT I’VE GOT OTHER BUSY STUFF TO DO! NEXT TIME WE MEET, WE’LL BE OUR LAST!!”
The Sandking rode off alongside his men. In the end, all that’s left were a confused trio and pieces of shattered ‘Delirnium’ scattered across the sandy floor. Morning dawned at this point as the first ray of sunrise began shining down the desert plains of Kaandur.
“Well, I guess that’s the end of it all,” Mako spoke, breaking their silence. “It’s been a wild ride not gonna lie.”
“I agree with your words Mako. This planet never fails to cease me from surprises and twists,” Copper replied.
“So, now what?”
“Now, I suppose we have no reason to dilly-dally here any longer-” Copper got up and went straight into his vehicle- “it’s been a real pleasure sharing this venture with you two, but I assume you both have your own planned journey ahead as the same could be said for me.”
“I wish you two the best of luck, and the deadliest of bullets! Until we meet again-” the gentleman pulled out a hat from the glove box and wore it solely to give them both a hat tip. With that, Copper rode off back to his hometown, leaving behind our duo protagonists staring at the gentleman as he slowly disappeared on the horizon.
“Well, at least Mr Copper didn’t backstab us unlike our partners before,” Fyra commented.
“Yeah. To be honest, he’s the coolest dude we’ve hung around with. I wonder if there are more people like him…”
“Meh, we can ponder about it later Mako. Let’s get the hell outta here!”
And with that, our duo protagonist rode off into the sunrise to who-knows-where to do who-knows-what. Whatever their next adventure, stupid shit will always follow the Devil, the Witch, in this wicked world called Delirith!