Chapter 44:

Red Haired Demon

Adventures of Zeleon

"Dammit! Courtney let me go!" Leon yelled at her and squirmed trying to escape her strong grip. "Charlotte, what are you doing with Katrina?!"

"Hmm? I just took her because she fell into my lap. She'd be an interesting bargaining chip to use, especially since she was hanging around that Xaveran scum." She responded with an icy calmness, thinking she had something.

Courtney, Leon and Maeva looked at her with a blank stare. Despite all of the emotions, this was only news to the Komodrons and Charlotte. "Erm...she's working amongst them on purpose, got nothing, information wise." Leon said with a more relaxed tone.

"Damn, and here I thought I had leverage. The Shoud family is more shrewd than I thought. But, it was genius on their part. Personally, I'd kill them all." Charlotte chuckled. "Seems you're too important to kill Katrina, or…" She grabbed her and pressed the point of her scythe at her throat. "...important enough to get something out of them."

Katrina looked nervous as she shivered, with a few beads of sweat dripping from her brow. Leon was released by Courtney, as she was shaking as well. After their comrade was killed the Komodrons barely moved, even Varius and Salandra were silent. Maeva was stuck in her own head, unsure that she could do anything.

"Morale is looking really low right now, I need to figure out what I can do here….come on think…"

Leon was in his thoughts for a moment before determining the best course of action. One that would make everyone's heart skip a beat. "Take me!" He exclaimed, getting everyone's attention. "I'm the one you want, you've been having a keen interest in me ever since we met! So come on, let her go and face me, so I can beat you like the red headed stepchild that YOU ARE!" Leon boldly stepped out in front of everyone as he looked at Katrina, who looked as if she was going to cry.

"Leon...don't! It's a trick! She's not going to kill me!"

"Just give me an opening."

Charlotte smirked, holding herself back from laughing. But she pulled away the scythe from Katrina's throat and pushed her forward. "Bravo! Bravo! That's the kind of bravado I expect from my Guardian! I like you Leon, I really do. Your courage defies credible logic, but you're not the hero that can stop me.


Katrina held Charlotte with her telekinesis, holding her in place for a moment for Leon to use Blitz Movement. She managed to break out of Katrina's bind, but he was able to slash her across the chest and push her back to defense, moving deeper into the forest in doing so.

Katrina was on the ground panting as Maeva was the first to check on her. Varius and Salandra sent their troops back, as they'd get in the way at this point. Courtney fell to her knees, feeling so useless in the moment. "Why...couldn't I move…?"

Cynric looked over all of them and merely spoke a few words. "As per request of Charlotte, the others and myself are simply here to document and tell the story right about whatever happens. We are not your threat. As she wanted as little casualty to our parties as possible."

Rather than saying anything in response to him. Attention was turned to Courtney.

"Why didn't you do something?" Maeva asked.

"Courtney, this isn't like you. The fire you had earlier is gone." Varius stated.

"I don't even want to look at you. You were second in command and you want to be Queen with that tentativeness? What a joke…" Salandra sat off to the side, knowing she was no match for Charlotte.

Courtney didn't respond, her nerves and her thoughts had her overwhelmed.

"Varius. Let's go after him. There's no way he has a chance by himself." Maeva said, hopping into a tree.

"Yeah. Courtney, Salandra stay with Katrina." He said before joining Maeva, heading into the forest.

Katrina sat up, sighing to herself.

Courtney punched the ground, cracking it as she got up, glaring at her. "Why the hell are you here?"

"I..came with them. Ravlynn begged me so much that I couldn't say no anymore...then as soon as we got here, she jumped us and took me."

"That was incredibly dense of you. You could've died."

Salandra scoffed. "Stop trying to push your frustration on yourself onto her."

Katrina stood up and looked into Courtney's eyes. "At least I tried to do something for him…he did what he did for you. He was courageous for all of you!"

Courtney let out a growl of frustration before she stormed off into the forest. Leaving Salandra and Katrina with Cynric.

"Princess, you think we can actually win? You saw into her head. What's she thinking?" Salandra asked her.

"She wants to recruit everyone. That's her first goal, she baited whoever would take it. And Leon was the one she wanted most…"


Leon pushed Charlotte back with his hyper aggressive approach. Their weapons clashed time after time, making flashes that lit up the entire forest. He finally got a brief advantage when he pressed her into a tree.

The shorter Charlotte smiled at him. "That movement is intriguing. You turn it into a fluid motion through multiple directional changes, you only move as much as a lightning strike allows. A human wouldn't know...but a vampire is more keen to see that speed."

She pushed him back and immediately put him on the defensive, he blocked each strike desperation. She overmatched him with ease and pressed him back into a tree. "I love your bravery. But, you will die at this rate."

Silva let out a blue flame that engulfed her for a split moment making her back off of him, as her magic quickly made it dissipate before any real harm came to her.

"Hmm, not bad." She said to him.

He launched himself at her switching to lightning again, striking her with everything he had until she caught the flaw in his Blitz Movement. She veered through the trees, throwing him off. That moment of hesitation gave her a window to appear from behind a tree and kick him back into another, before rushing him full speed, striking with her scythe.

He barely blocked her. The scythe blade cut his cheek and made him bleed a bit, she gave him a fangy grin before kicking him in his leg making him lose leverage. He slid down a bit to her height, leaving him open for her to tease him by licking the blood off.

Something Vampires never do unless they turn someone is sample blood from a still living person. They are hit with the person's entire life, memories and emotions all in a matter of moments. Charlotte underwent this willingly, curious of Leon's past and his feelings. The result made her step back a bit and cry bloody tears. Leon looked at her curiously, not knowing if she was laying a trap for him.

"'ve been through quite a bit haven't you? Now I can see why you did this, I saw what you've seen. Earth is more broken than I thought. And you've been through more pain than I thought…" She took a deep breath as she wiped her tears of blood away. "Why are you loyal to humanity when so many treat you like dirt?"

Leon knew what she did. Courtney was very adamant to never touch his blood, feeling that it'd be cheating as a way of understanding him. He stood back to his feet and caught his breath.

"I wish to be better than a human, proving that a human can do that. I'm not saying that to be better than others, I'm saying that to be better than myself."

"Better than yourself? Self improvement is one thing, but becoming Guardian to better yourself is..a bit insane isn't it?" Charlotte asked him.

"No more insane than paying fees to college, or breaking the limits of your body to be the best athlete. Guardian is no different, the greater the risk the greater the reward. If that reward can iron out all that teenage bullshit that I pulled to get here, then it was for the best. Even if I die here today, I can have solace that I actually fucking tried." Leon responded with a resolute tone.

Charlotte got back into a fighting stance after taking a deep breath. "I want you to join me. If you would be so kind, I'd treat you like family, you'd never feel separated or isolated ever again. The friends you've made here are ones I plan to spare, I'll even spare Katrina. Together we can balance Zeleon, as vampires."

Leon shook his head. "Nope. Balance is not what you want. You want to take over and tilt the balance for yourself."

"Tsk. So sad."

Leon charged at her again, their weapons clashing with more intense force than before. But, now used to his movements, she countered him, hitting him numerous times with the blunt end of her scythe, before knocking him back several hundred feet through the air, through several branches before hitting the ground with a massive thud.

Charlotte stood over him after the dust cleared, he struggled to move after being thrown so far, while she stuck her scythe to his throat. "Seems like you've made the wrong choice."

"Heh...I know I can't beat you. But I can hold you off long enough to have someone else who can clean up."

"Ha! Are you talking about Courtney?! She can't even-"

Charlotte was cut off as Courtney sideswiped her. She launched her back into a tree and pounded her into it before pulling her halberd from its special zone and attempted to stab her through the head, but got her shoulder instead.

"Someone finally found the courage to face me now? Only after Leon risked himself for the group? What a terrible friend you are Courtney." Her tone was mocking, only sending Courtney into more of a rage.

"SHUT UP!" She yelled.

Charlotte slipped away from her, only to get caught by Leon, forcing her to block his strike while Courtney sliced her in the back. The Vampire Queen had to retreat back to get both of them in front of her as they charged. Leon got knocked back by her, while Courtney hung in going blow for blow. Leon again charged with Charlotte off guard and shoulder tackled her into a large, thick tree.

The next thing Leon heard was the squelch of metal tearing into flesh. He looked at himself, and felt nor saw any pain that'd be attributed to it. As he looked to the side, his eyes sank in horror. Somehow, Charlotte moved so fast he didn't feel her get away from him, and stabbed her scythe through Courtney, from left to right in her abdomen.

"COURTNEY!!!!!!" He yelled to her while she coughed up blood when the scythe pulled out of her. Leon caught her and set her down with his Blitz Movement, before closing the distance on Charlotte who smirked at his look of pure rage. He switched to the fire element at the last moment, the blue flame bursted out as he yelled once again. "AZURE DRAGON FLARE!!!!" A blue flame dragon materialized as Leon slashed upwards, and collided with Charlotte creating a blowback that made a cloud of dust.

Leon then went down to Courtney after she'd sat up already. " alright?! That looks really bad…"

She smiled at him gently. "I'm ok..this isn't as bad for me as it looks." She got up to her feet, with her stomach bleeding profusely, she coughed every few moments.

The dust cleared away, and up above with black bat wings fanned out flapping was Charlotte. She got out of Leon's attack completely unscathed.

"You can fly?!" He exclaimed.

"Courtney, you never told him?! Well Leon, you should be thanking me. I'm always telling you the truth, while others tell only half. Courtney, despite drinking blood, is not a true vampire. She's never fully accepted the so-called "curse" in its entirety, and because of that...she's weaker than me. All from being scared of becoming corrupt. Now, see the fault in your faith Leon? Courtney as she is, can't defeat me and she knew that." Charlotte explained.

Courtney shook, she knew Charlotte was right. Leon looked at Courtney and his gears started turning, before he saw shadows moving above.

Charlotte noticed the shadows as well, but her mood changed immediately once handmade silver bombs were tossed and silver dust exploded in the air. Leon moved with Courtney to get her as far away from it as possible.

Charlotte fell to the ground screaming in agony. The silver burned her skin like acid would for a regular human. Varius and Maeva stepped out into view as Leon helped Courtney away. The two pairs noticed each other.

"Leon what happened?!" Varius exclaimed.

"Courtney's hurt! I'm beat up but I'm standing."

"Go back for now and tend to her. We'll handle Charlotte!" Maeva commanded.

"Are you sure?!"

"Just GO!!"

Leon took Courtney back as Maeva and Varius took their turn in trying to take down the mighty Vampire Queen.