Beyond The Stars
Chapter 232: Whole Again
Narrator: Zeth has consumed Crimson and while Zeth was speaking to Crimson in his subconscious, we now see what happened to Zeth’s body in reality.
*In reality, Zeth’s body fell on his back where he remains unconscious after consuming Crimson*
*Zonbi looks at the mysterious boy*
Zonbi: You know what to do.
*The mysterious boy jumps onto the arena. He tries to grab Zeth but he is intercepted by Sasha, Kurt, and Emily who stand in front of Zeth’s body and stop the boy*
Sasha: Don’t even think about it!
Zonbi: So you sniffed out my little game, have you?
Kurt: We have been suspicious of you from the start!
Emily: You wanted Zeth to participate in this tournament for a reason! We don’t know exactly why but it’s obvious you want him!
Boy: And we will have him. Step aside or I will kill all three of you.
*The boy prepares to fight*
Zonbi: Wait, don’t engage.
Boy: Huh!? Why not?
Zonbi: Let me explain to them.
*She then looks at the three heroes*
Zonbi: I desire to have Zeth in my possession because I plan to overthrow the Dark Goddess.
*The heroes are shocked*
Sasha: Zeth has vowed to help take down the Dark Goddess and so have we! You are wasting your time.
Zonbi: I will help him obtain the power to defeat her. Before I could do anything to power him up, he needed to become whole again. With this tournament, I gave him the ability to train without distractions. Then he and Crimson would become whole. It didn’t matter who consumed who.
Kurt: Why does he need to be under your watch!?
Zonbi: Have you even grasped who he is? He is a divine being, an heir of the Light Goddess.
Emily: Yeah, we get that!
Zonbi: With divinity returned to him, you can expect that he won’t feel the need to hang around with mortals such as yourselves. Sasha is the only one he will likely want to still be around with. You have demon modifications but you are still mortals at heart.
Sasha: What is your point!?
Zonbi: My point is that soon, Zeth will drop his mortal companions like yesterday’s news and I’m giving him the necessary environment to train to his potential.
Emily: What makes you say that?
Zonbi: Many divine beings look down on mortals. They see their divinity as making them superior to mortals in every way. Zeth could end up like that too.
Sasha: I’m the Dark Goddess’s daughter and I don’t look down on mortals!
Zonbi: Oh really? You may have been conditioned a little because you lived in the mortal world but how you truly feel about them comes out when you fight them. Think about it. One sign is when you call them “mortal” when talking to them whether you know their name or not. Or you point out their mortality.
*Sasha’s face turns to shock*
Sasha: (Thinking) She’s right! Not just when I was a little kid but when I clashed with that ninja in the mansion or when I kept looking down on Kogen no matter how powerful he got! Is it instinct!? Are we really meant to look down on mortals!?
*Sasha now responds to Zonbi out loud*
Sasha: Even so! I know how I truly feel! I would protect any mortal that does not serve the Dark Goddess!
Zonbi: It matters not because I need to take Zeth.
Kurt: How would you power him up!?
Zonbi: I will put him under some of the most intense training he can go through and I may also give him biological enhancements if needed. Most importantly, I will keep him focused. There will be no distractions.
Kurt: You better be careful because that enhancement part sounds almost like what Kogen wanted to do!
Emily: And even then, why do you need him!? You look like you are already a powerful demon!
Zonbi: There is a hierarchy of divine beings. Because he has the powers of an outright god from birth, he has a higher ceiling than me. In other words, he is a part of that top level in the hierarchy.
Kurt: Why do you, a demon, want to kill the Dark Goddess anyway?
Zonbi: I hate the ways in which the current Dark Goddess operates. But even more than that, she had my parents executed. My parents were the previous king and queen of the undead and they were on the Dark Goddess’s Council of Demons. The Council of Demons is a group that consists of some of the most powerful demons of Hell. My parents did nothing to betray her and yet she executed them without cause.
Sasha: Ironic considering she got angry with me when I killed the demons of Hell for my own entertainment.
Kurt: Are you sure they did nothing?
Zonbi: Yes, I’m positive.
Kurt: I still have my doubts.
Zonbi: Anyway, one of the members of the current council I’m sure you know of is Korobu. The council is no joke. You would have to take them down before you could even think to take on the Dark Goddess.
Sasha: And you think you could get Zeth the ability to do it alone?
Zonbi: It could take centuries but I would get him past their level and up to the Dark Goddess. He can’t be focused on anything else.
*Suddenly, Zeth’s body begins to glow gold*
Boy: Oh no! It’s too late!
*A golden blonde color begins to fill into Zeth’s hair and becomes that color after it has been black since he and Crimson were made into separate beings. Zeth opens his eyes. His iris color is now green after having been black since Crimson was separated from him*
*Zeth stands up and scratches his head*
Zeth: I heard everything all of you were saying. Sorry Zonbi, but I think I will pass.
Zonbi: I was going to do it by force but it looks like it is too late.
Zeth: Don’t think you need to keep me here for me to become powerful enough to take down the Dark Goddess. I will do it my way.
Zonbi: Well, then you better not die while trying to. I suppose I should give you your reward for winning the tournament. I will release your friend as well as Maskodon. But if you recall, I also promised you information.
Zeth: And what is that information?
Zonbi: My son is your half-brother.
*The heroes are shocked*
Zeth: My half-brother?
Zonbi: Yes. Your father, Kyle Dredon, is still out there.
Zeth: My mother told me he had disappeared.
Zonbi: Yes, he left without being tracked but he was still out there. Let’s just say that he has changed a lot since the time Harmona was with him.
Zeth: Changed? In what way?
Zonbi: I don’t want to spoil all the fun. One day you will meet him and you will see for yourself.
Zeth: Come to think of it, I still don’t know this boy’s name.
Zonbi: He remains unnamed.
Zonbi: Anyone in your father’s bloodline can be “The Key”. It’s a curse. The only way to make sure you can’t be affected by it is to not have a name.
Zeth: I don’t get it.
Zonbi: Maybe I shouldn’t have brought it up. One day, you will understand it but today is not that day. That’s all I’m going to say about it. To be honest, I don’t even know all of the details myself.
Zeth: Well, thanks for the info but we will be taking RAG and Maskodon. Then we’re leaving.
Zonbi: I will have him brought out. Just know that I’m putting my trust in you. When it comes time to fight the Dark Goddess, know that I and my undead forces will be joining your side.
*The heroes meet outside the destroyed stadium with RAG and Maskodon*
Maskodon: I apologize for failing to save your friend. I am ashamed for ending up just another hostage in need of saving.
Zeth: It’s okay. I’m just glad Zonbi released both of you without a fight. I can tell she is super strong so we probably would not have been able to take her down in a fight.
RAG: And to think that little kid, her son, is your half-brother. And you say he doesn’t have a name either?
Sasha: That’s right. That curse Zonbi mentioned is something we may need to look into at some point.
Emily: I think we should all get out of here. After all, Zeth, you can finally return to Heaven.
Zeth: That’s right! Let’s get going!
Maskodon: One last thing before we part ways.
*The heroes look at Maskodon*
Maskodon: I believe you all would make great allies. If the time comes that I need your help, I will come seek you out. Now, I shall be on my way.
*Maskodon walks away while the heroes just stare at him*
Narrator: Zeth has obtained Zonbi’s trust and when the time comes, she and her forces will be on the battlefield! However, what darkness awaits the heroes from here?
Chapter 232 END
To be Continued in Chapter 233: Command of the Crow Beak Divine Killers
END OF ARC
Arc Completed: March 6th, 2016
Author's Note: Over on the Scribble Hub posting of this chapter, I have posted the artwork of Zeth with his divinity restored within the chapter.