Chapter 21:

High Commander Unefet: The Beginning of the End

Setting Sun Story: Beta

West Gate of Baustas - 6:00 PMBookmark here

Movement has stopped.Bookmark here

By all means, Baustas should have crumbled beneath our fingers.Bookmark here

Everything was calculated, from the potency of the Chaos aura, to the population of the city.Bookmark here

Without the use of spies, we could only rely on the guidance of the Researchers, they launched everything, entirely behind the back of the Queen.Bookmark here

I know she'll forgive us for denying her orders when she sees Lumina's capabilities.Bookmark here

Alas, it'll take just a little more.Bookmark here

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The High Commander was never meant to see battle today. Having barked his orders out this morning, he prepared for a swift trip home.Bookmark here

But word came back, informing him that the West End was being pushed back due to a lack of troops, while the South and East remained intact.Bookmark here

Unefet knows well the possibilities of Baustas' Deacons. There's a certain power that lies here, within the red aura.Bookmark here

He prepares now, standing at the gates of the West End, with an executioner's great-sword.Bookmark here

The thick and squared tip of the straight-blade points skyward, as High Commander Unefet looks into the gem of blue Light encrusted in its gray hilt.Bookmark here

"Forgive us, Queen Ciel. Lumina will see a clear blue sky once again."Bookmark here

With a knife, he chips away the adornment in his blade, cutting out the beautiful crystal, and taking it in his hand.Bookmark here

It shines bright against the red world, held to the sky between his finger and thumb.Bookmark here

"I do this for you..."Bookmark here

He swallows the Light crystal whole, its blue glow lighting the veins of his neck as his throat pushes it down into his core.Bookmark here

What follows is a transformation unlike the grunts and killers of his subordination.Bookmark here

His skin begins to emit a bright white, as his insides, not shifting nor disassembling, fade into pure energy.Bookmark here

A rebirth. Perhaps some kind of ascension, albeit temporary.Bookmark here

What light isn't held in the orbit of the awakening fetus, expands outward, in a fleeting image of six dazzling wings, barely apparent as they cascade down to nothingness.Bookmark here

From the aura of the unborn silhouette, a cage of metal, of solidified blood, turned the light gray of stone, builds out of the air.Bookmark here

Three rings of this make, all spinning furiously, etched in pattern on their outer edges to point eyes to the world.Bookmark here

An intangible form. An Old Angel Monstrosity takes to the sky, in a blinding ball of white, its eye-draining emission seeming to flash behind the motion of its protective rings.Bookmark here

West End Residential District - Erin - 6:02 PMBookmark here

The exhaustion weighing on his face, and the loss of staggering force coming from his attacks, Erin's blade comes down, lodging into the chest armor of an enemy soldier.Bookmark here

Planting his foot on the foe, he rips it out, stepping back as his allies continue down the street ahead of him.Bookmark here

"Can you keep going?" Jun asks, running up to his side and putting a hand on his shoulder.Bookmark here

Her face is stained in dirt and blood.Bookmark here

"What a first day," Erin responds, letting out a tired breath as he regains his stature.Bookmark here

"Everything seems to be in order here, we should head back to the central square and see where we can help next," he continues.Bookmark here

Jun nods next to him, and the two turn away from the push through the district, the enemy forces dwindling.Bookmark here

Suddenly, Jun stops.Bookmark here

Before her, crushed flat, is her house.Bookmark here

"Sure lost a lot today," she coughs out. "I never kept a lot but... seeing this is just..."Bookmark here

"C'mon, lets make sure we don't lose any more, okay-?" Erin is cut off before he can finish calling out to Jun.Bookmark here

Down the road, the intense sound of heavy and pure energy belts out, mixing with sudden screams and the breaking of stone.Bookmark here

They both turn, finding a white light in the sky, beaming down from an eye momentarily stationary, a giant, thick beam of Light Aether.Bookmark here

The sight is perplexing, unnerving. A chill echoes down Erin's spine as he stares, frozen at the sky's ray.Bookmark here

It hurts his brain to see it, as if he's immediately scarred seeing some side to life that one should never witness.Bookmark here

The beam travels along the road, splattering, crushing, and splitting the Baustian soldiers into a storm of limbs and red mist.Bookmark here

Erin grabs at Jun's arm, still unable to fully understand this moment.Bookmark here

The attacking layer of the Old Angel Monstrosity, the outermost ring, turns one etching, the first eye seemingly fully expelled of its Aether.Bookmark here

After an eerie moment of silence, the stone glyph moves, blinking before another beam carves out.Bookmark here

"J-Jun, run. G-go... move!" Erin screams, pulling her as he runs down the road.
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Their first priority is to get out of its line of sight, ducking behind a tall house before moving on.Bookmark here

The being spares no wood, no stone, and no steel, ripping through the foundation of the building, its blue ray blowing holes in the New Bloods' defenses.Bookmark here

They pick up the pace, the razing laser at their feet.Bookmark here

The strike lets up as they barrel through the front door of a home bordering the West Lake.Bookmark here

The Old Angel rotates another eye, and blindly fires into the house.Bookmark here

Inside, Erin and Jun are hiding behind either side of a sofa.Bookmark here

"What the fuck is that? What... is that!?" Erin yells over to his partner.Bookmark here

"Quiet. It stopped," Jun whispers back, peaking her head over the couch back to the Western windows.Bookmark here

She wraps her fingers over the leather, ever carefully.Bookmark here

Jun's jolted, before leaping to the side in reaction, as the beam explodes straight through the interior, cutting the couch in two.Bookmark here

It shoots straight through, opening a path out of the house's back wall.Bookmark here

They both give a glance of relief, and nod in unspoken agreement before sliding through the hole the airborne atrocity left.Bookmark here

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Into the city's center they retreat, where they will find the last stand of Baustas' main forces, and the Chosen One, ready to play the Savior's trump card.Bookmark here

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