Chapter 11:


No Hero: Chronicles of a Nameless Misfit

My hands and legs were tied to the wall by shackles. The cold steel squeezed my skin, almost freezing it. That was what brought me back. My head was still spinning, my eyes fuzzy, and my nose full of a disgusting but at the same time sweet smell. Sharp pain on the back of my skull reminded me that I was dragged there and hit something on the ground. I could see blurry stains of blood under my feet, probably coming from my head and my hand. The bandages I just used were coated in red but the wound under them had stopped bleeding.

I was in a room we didn’t find during our exploration underground and since everything could have been one of Clara’s illusions, I didn’t have a clue where exactly I was at that moment.

“The Hero is back with us” Brad joked.

He was grabbing Lua by the back of the neck, she had a cloth inside her mouth. Tears poured from her eyes as she tried to free herself, punching Brad’s harm without even budging it. Her staff was in Gray’s hands.

Female arms were gripping my waist over one of the other wounds. Clara was clinging to me with a pleased smile. Hearing Brad’s words and seeing my eyes open she rejoiced and caressed my face leaning for a kiss. Lua was shouting something but I couldn’t hear her muffled voice. I evaded Clara’s lips and pushed her aside moving my hips.

“You’re hard to get aren’t you, Honey? This will make me even more excited to have you. Not that you could rebel or anything now” she pointed at her neck.

I felt something around mine tighten. A leather feeling on my Adam's apple and the light of a magic circle functioning led me to understand I had one of the black collars on. Electricity flew through my body and I couldn’t move anything anymore. Was it paralysis?

“Now let’s try again”

Clara got closer again. Even if I wanted to push her away again my body didn’t move an inch. My head turned on its own as Clara’s face approached me. Her hand brushed my chest as our lips touched. I tried to escape the Man-Eater but I was already sure that nothing would have happened. My body was being controlled by her and the fact that my conscience was still intact scared me the most.

“Good boy” she pinched my cheeks “With just a little bit of external help you’re finally mine”

She took out a key hidden in her chest to open my restrainings and my body touched the ground again. My arms moved to try to embrace Clara and bring her closer to me. She dodged laughing and shook her index finger.

“I know you want me, but we have some prying eyes watching us right now. You’ll have to wait” she clapped her hands twice.

I got on my knees, my back lowered and my arms extended towards the ground. Clara sat on my back using me as a stool. She placed her hand on my chin and forced my head to look at her.

“You were so manly fighting the Goblins for my sake. My Hero, not the one of that slave girl Magnus let escape, nor the one of this little slut right here” she pointed her staff at Lua.

“I am not your Hero, Clara” I could still speak “And if you call her that one more time…”

“What are you going to do Honey? Kiss me until I die? Because that’s the only thing you can do now”

“Can we take the girl to the Boss now?” Brad was getting impatient “We would like to have some fun too”

Lua tried again to escape without success. Brad lowered his arm forcing Lua on her knees. Her hands were tied in front of her with rope.

“Or we could use her here in front of the Rookie, Keke. That will break him for sure” Gray licked the blade of one of his knives and cut himself “Damn”

“You are all ruining my precious moment with my Honey!” Clara shouted “My place, my rules, understand? You’re lucky that I didn’t turn you into mindless slaves before”

She relieved her anger by shoving one of her heels in my thigh. I tried not to scream from the pain. They were all a bunch of crazy weirdos, we got caught in a trap. This all happened because I was stupid enough to not realize it sooner, I had only put Lua in danger. Right after I promised to protect her. I would have punched myself in the face if only I could move a muscle. Apparently, the fault was all mine for having rescued that girl weeks ago. Lua was now crying, scared and I was powerless. I could only feel shame and contempt towards myself and those three bastards in the room.

“I want to try my toy out for a bit” Clara snapped her fingers as she stood up “Now fight Honey, fight for me and become a true Hero”

One of the doors of the room exploded and Goblins started filling the place. We were all controlled by the collars. I moved, it would be better to say that Clara moved me, and ran unsheathing my sword. The Goblins did the same with their weapons and the fight started. A 1v50 that I could have never won in normal conditions. My body felt light and sprinted on the stone pavement. Goblins from left and right threw lances at me deleting every possibility I had to dodge them all without getting hit. My arms started parrying without rest, blades grazed my skin and clothes.

When the barrage of lances had ended the chivalry came. My sword cut through a couple of Goblins before getting stuck in one of their armors. With inhuman strength, I lifted my sword and the three Goblins my blade had pierced and used them as a meat shield to block the next wave of attacks.

With a quick spin, the corpses of the Warriors became projectiles shot from the tip of my sword and broke the improvised formation of monsters. Without wasting a second my hands launched my sword into the mask of a Goblin killing it on the spot, I quickly retrieved the sword and began slashing in front of me to create an opening in the wave. My head didn’t have to think about what moves to make since I wasn’t doing anything, and could analyze the fight as it went on. Even if the situation wasn’t the best I could still learn something for when I eventually freed myself from Clara’s control.

Hours passed as I dragged on that inhumane fight against monsters against my will. Heads were flying, bodies dropping like flies. What was at first an army of Goblin had now reduced to less than a dozen.

I was covered in green blood as I struck everything that moved in front of my eyes. The recoil from hitting the Goblin’s bones when slashing sent shivers down my spine. It was a macabre experience of carnage in first person. The screams, the pain I felt every time a blade cut my skin, the blood in my mouth and everywhere on my body scarred my mind. It was a never-ending hell. What I thought at first to be a chance to learn something became a nightmare I would have liked to wake up from. Every time my sword moved, claiming another life, my anger increased for the one who was controlling me and the ones who were just waiting to hurt Lua. My thoughts were lost and I couldn't think of a way to escape. The last Goblin died slashing my face during the fall.

“Make it stop” I wanted to puke. My hands couldn’t even shake.

“Please let Rei go!” Lua had managed to move the cloth out of her mouth “I’ll do everything you want, just let him leave” I couldn’t stand seeing her like that anymore.

“I can’t do that to my Honey” Clara came closer with a vial in her hand “I have to break him entirely if I want to build him into a magnificent and obedient lover”

She forced me to drink what I recognized as a health potion. The wounds on my body closed up before my eyes just like after Lua’s spells. I wanted to swing my sword at her neck so badly, the first time in my new life where I wanted to end someone’s life. I was going crazy, thinking like that was wrong. She had to pay in another way.

“You might want to close your eyes Lua” Brad spoke excited for what was coming next “It’s time for the second wave”

“That hag might even kill him before he breaks Keke” Gray ignored Brad’s words and forced Lua’s head to watch in my direction.

Hundreds of gleaming eyes could be seen in the darkness behind the door. Goblin Warriors waited patiently for their turn to be killed by my hands, just for a woman to make me fall for her. What a shit world this was, Aurora wasted her powers giving me a second chance if this was my future.

Goblins came into the room marching over their dead comrades, stealing their weapons and armor. My breath was short once again, how unusual. I dragged the blade of my sword on the stone, sparks flew in the air. Another dash. A shortsword cut my leg, an arrow pierced my shoulder, not even poison was working on me. An immovable killing machine. My blood was boiling, the ringing of my ears blocked every other sound. My heart squeezed and I was out of breath. The sword fell to the ground, my hands scratched my neck trying to let air in. Tears of pain washed some of the blood on my face away. The ground came closer to my eye as I crashed into it. Pure black engulfed my surroundings and I was lost in infinity again.

[Lua, under Corola Forest]

Rei had just fallen headfirst in front of my eyes. He had multiple wounds on his body. Even a body controlled by others would have succumbed to fatigue one way or the other. The Goblins stopped attacking all of a sudden. Clara let out a gasp and ran towards Rei’s body, keeping him in her arms. I didn’t have enough force in my voice to scream out his name hoping he somehow woke up. I could only cry, I was useless. Rei ended up dragged in my problems even though I did all I could to prevent it. I couldn’t bear seeing him like this, I couldn’t bear seeing him in arms that weren’t mine. I asked him to not let go of me and I was the one who had done it in the end.

“Ah, he broke”

Captain had his hand still around my neck. It wasn’t the first time and if things didn’t change this was yet to be the last. My staff was in Gray’s hands leaving me unable to even cast a single spell. If only I had been a Roch...I was lucky enough to have been blessed with magic and Lux but what I needed the most now was out of arm's reach. I hoped Rei could have forgiven me someday for the troubles I got him into.

“Come on Rookie, you have more spirit than that” the man obsessed with knives wasn’t happy about the outcome of the battle “Get up! Fight on!”

Clara forcefully let Rei drink another potion feeding it to him, mouth to mouth. He had been treated like that just because of a woman. Rei’s hands twitched, then closed. His eyes lit up again, this time they were different from the usual green. Amber irises had taken their place. Rei got up on his feet again and brushed some dust off his clothes. He tried to clean his hands from the blood of the Goblins but seeing that he was covered in it he brushed them in his hair slicking the back. A smirk I had never seen before crossed his face.

“He reminds me of Magnus in some way” Brad commented “Must be the clothes”

“Wow, you’re right dude” both of them were caught in awe by that sight.

“Honey, are you ok? Can you continue? Do you want a hug?” Clara tried to catch him in her arms only to get pushed away “Did the mind control lift?” she checked the bracelet she was wearing “No, it should be fine”

“I have some trash to take care of, be there in a sec baby”

I had never heard Rei speak like that before. Even Clara was surprised by it but in a more excited way. Brad and Gray agreed that now Rei was way cooler than the boring and gutless Rookie they had in their Unit. I didn’t like it, Rei wasn’t like this. Did he keep this side of him secret?

Rei picked up his sword from the ground and invited Clara to resume the fight. He dashed forward at a speed higher than the one I had experienced before. He jumped right in the middle of the monsters and began slashing around him. He kicked every Goblin that tried to attack him from behind, spinning on his leg and hitting them with the heel of his boots. I was watching a strange blade dance where heads fell at every swing. It was a brutal way of fighting.

Using the masks of the Goblins as support he jumped onto another monster, he was laughing from enjoyment. My legs trembled just by seeing his face.

“What happened to you Rei?” I had lost the man I fell for.

Continuing his murderous dance while laughing like a maniac he dashed back and forth through the room as if he was playing a deadly game of tag with the Goblins. The floor was getting painted green as time passed. Clara looked at him, she was happy that her plan worked. Now that Rei was under her control I was as good as dead. Brand and Gray would have used me until they got bored to then throw me away. I had to find a way to cut the rope and bring Rei back to normal.

“You can’t catch me red and green fuckers Ahah” Rei jumped back into the crowd

After another couple of minutes, a Goblin corpse got kicked in the chest and flew away landing in front of me. My two guards were too engaged in the fight to notice that the monster had his dagger still in hand. The dead body was right under my eyes. I was shocked by the wound that Rei inflicted on the Goblin's body, the head was miraculously still attached to the neck while its belly was split apart. The green puddle reached my knees staining my boots, even if my whole body was petrified from the terror I still had to move. I leaned forward trying to catch the dagger with my hands. The blade slipped because of my hands shaking and cut one of my fingers. I bit my lip to avoid screaming and finally grabbed the sharp bone. I cut the rope and got up on my feet as fast as I could now that Brad had taken his arm off me. I got behind his back and pointed the blade at his neck.

“Stop this right now or I cut him open” I shouted, my words echoed in the room.

Rei, the Goblins, and everyone else stopped doing their thing and looked at me. I didn’t have the guts to cut anyone and my hands were still shaking like crazy. I was sniffing and tears kept coming out of my eyes.

“Don’t make the situation difficult” Brad spoke “Let the dagger go and be a good girl”

“Only if you let Rei go” I was determined to at least save him before myself “Then I’ll drop it”

“Ok, ok, as you wish” Clara accepted my offer “I don’t want to lose one of my brutes”

She touched her bracelet and Rei’s collar ripped in half. The magic circle broke. I wanted to run to him but I couldn’t let the hostage go or we would be back to square zero.

“Rei run away” I screamed with everything that was left in me “Tell Roxy what happened”

“Why would I? This is so fun” he stabbed a Goblin standing next to him with his sword.

My heart shattered. Everything I had managed to do to get to that point, that possibility to save Rei had been useless. Why was he acting like this? Why did he have to hurt me so much by staying here? I was lost. I dropped the dagger on the floor. Brad turned around and slapped me in the face, throwing me on the ground. Gray jumped on me to keep me blocked. I tried with all my strength to get him off but I was tired. I just wanted to give up. The only light I had in my life died before my eyes. Rei was looking directly at me. For a second his eyes turned back to normal.

He leaned on the ground to grab something and then his arm moved. A bone shard flew before my eyes and stuck into Gray’s shoulder.

“Watch out Rookie! Clara keep your thing in check”

Rei picked up another shard and threw it in the same spot. Gray shouted.

“If you don’t stop him, I’m not gonna hold back” he took out two knives.

“Clara, block him somehow” even Brad grabbed his axe.

Rei began walking towards me, his sword in hand.

“I can’t control him anymore, he’s gone berserk” Clara moved her hands and the army of Goblins started grabbing onto Rei trying to slow him down.

The blade cut through the skin of the monsters and Rei kept advancing.

“This is beginning to become a bother” he spoke and turned.

Every Goblin remaining was now beheaded and started dropping on the ground. He had moved his arms in a way that my eye didn’t catch. He raised his leg from the ground and disappeared. Gray wasn’t standing on me anymore. He got kicked in the chest by Rei and crashed into the wall behind us. It was more than five meters away. I grabbed Rei’s arm begging him to stop. He tore away from my grip and went to Gray who was just now getting back on his feet. Rei’s sword stabbed him in the shoulder where the shards had hit him. The blade passed through the flesh and chipped the wall. Gray used his knives and slashed the arm that was wielding the sword.

Rei kicked Gray in the chest one more time making him cough blood, looked at his wounded arm, and extracted the sword from Gray’s body. He took a step back evading Brad’s axe. The blow was so powerful that the stone pavement broke into pieces and the room shook. Brad swung his sword again and again, just like Rei did before, he too was laughing in enjoyment. Whenever the fight got serious Brad was always happy to risk his life. The fight began distancing itself from me and Gray, after recovering with a potion, jumped right back in backing his friend.

“Guys stop, don’t hurt my Honey!” she begged but none of the three was listening.

They were trading deadly blows as if it was a child’s game. Blood began spilling from both sides. Rei was agile and quick but had to keep a defensive stance to block both of his enemies’ attacks.

I regained composure and grabbed my staff. I tried casting a healing spell but my arms immediately went up in flames from the fatigue. I had depleted my mana pool during the exploration. If only I had one of those recovery potions.

Clara was worried about Rei’s sake. I caught her off guard and smacked her with my weapon. She cursed at me and smacked me in the legs with her staff. We were both fighting for Rei’s sake but I was the only one who truly cared about him. Clara was a master at using underhanded tricks. A Goblin raised from the ground, spared from Rei’s previous carnage and seeing women smacking each other, decided to join us. Clara cast an illusion spell and the Goblin split into three, I couldn’t dodge all of them and didn’t know which one was real. Blades were aimed at me and my hands were trying to block Clara’s offense.

A sword pierced one of the Goblin’s heads making the other two disappear. Rei ran past me and recovered his sword sliding on the ground in order to evade knives flying at him. Brad followed smashing his axe where Rei had just been. A foot kicked the Captain under his chin, a blade closed in. Gray blocked it saving Brad from certain death. Rei kicked Gray’s chest for the third time making him collide with the man behind him, distancing both of them from me. A smiling Rei charged again into battle.

In the distraction created by that, I let go of my staff, grabbed Clara’s, and headbutted her in the face, breaking her glasses. A river of blood fell from her nose. She covered her face leaving her pouch unguarded. I quickly snatched a vial of red liquid and drank it. Grabbing my staff again I was finally able to cast my last spell.

“First Heal” Rei’s body glowed and his wounds closed.

A staff hit me in the chest and I fell to the ground. Clara was standing on top of me and started beating me.

“You had to ruin everything, REI IS MINE! MINE!” I was now the only one sane in that room, but not for long.

I wanted Rei to save me but I knew that wasn’t possible anymore. My body hurt like hell, some of my ribs were breaking under Clara’s rage. I was out of options. In what I believed were my last moments alive I could only think of Rei, Chevy was right...we would have been a great couple. Maybe if things weren’t this way. Maybe in another life. My eyes were glued on him and his battle.

A beast was moving before me, something had awakened inside Rei. He evaded another one of Brad’s blows and used the handle of his axe to jump in the air. Gray saw an opportunity and threw all the knives he had in his hands at the man falling on him. Rei caught one of them and redirected it in my direction, hitting Clara in the leg and giving me a break. He then landed in front of Gray and lowered his sword on the man’s body. Knives dropped on the floor.

“One down”

Seeing his friend fall Brad charged at Rei trying to run him over. His axe cut Rei’s belt apart and stuck it into the floor. The lower blade shattered.

“You’re gonna pay for that Rookie!”

Brad swung again, catching Rei with the wooden part of his weapon. Another slash leading into an uppercut. Rei evaded with ease and kicked Brad’s leg making him trip. The axe flew across the room bouncing on the floor as the sword’s blade pierced Brad’s chest. The captain grabbed the sword with both hands and forcefully removed it from its body. He threw a straight punch at Rei who managed to parry, his boots slid on the stone after the impact.

“Be a man and fight with your fists, come on” Rei dropped his sword “Good choice, Rookie, now DIE!”

Brad charged. If he landed one of his fists the battle would have had its winner. Rei raised his boot as his sword was still falling and kicked it into the Captain's abdomen. Brad slowed down, unable to continue.

“You don’t bring fists to a sword fight. Your friend Magnus taught me that” Rei slapped Brad’s face and laughed.

We had won. Against all odds, luck helped us pull this off. I had to thank the Gods once I got back home.

A heel punctured my skin. Clara was still there.

“Stop if you don’t want me to kill your girlfriend” the Man-eater pointed her staff at my head.

“What are you going to do? Kiss me until I die?”

Rei had one of Gray’s knives hidden in his hand and threw it at Clara making her drop her staff.

“What do you want from me? If it’s money I have tons in this base, the key is right here” she puffed her chest out in a desperate attempt to seduce him.

“Money would be good” Rei took Clara’s bracelet “Do I just order your minions around with this?”

Goblins entered the room again. I was scared another fight would break out. The Warriors walked to Clara and grabbed her legs.

“Wait, Wait! I can give you anything else, what do you want? My body? I’ll give it to you. Just spare me” she ripped her clothes. Her eyes were lost in despair and terror.

Monsters started pulling her away from me. She sank her nails into the ground trying to stop. She screamed, calling Rei’s name hoping that her Hero would save her. She started crying just like I had done before, I knew what she was feeling. The ones who made me aware of that were now laying on the cold stone.

Her body faded away in the hallway just as her voice. Rei took his sword back from Brad’s body and searched the members of our Unit for anything of value. I still couldn’t move. The Goblin King was as mellow as a Bovur in front of this side of Rei. I didn’t even realize I had wet myself terrorized from watching the fight.

I was tired. I just wanted Rei to bring me home and tell me that everything was going to be alright. I wanted to hold his hand again while sleeping. As if nothing had happened.

Hey! Ecspo here. Hope you liked this chapter!

Since this is my first serious work and also my first work in English I would very much appreciate any tips, critiques, comments of any kind. Tell me if the chapters are too long, short, or whatever, it would mean a lot to me.