Chapter 0:

Prologue: Fenrius The Mad Cadet

Runeverse: Dawnstrike Assassins

A Chthonian roar echoed throughout the Drought Desert. A Courier passes a red zone warning sign to deliver an important message to one of the Demolitionist settlements. The Chthonian is an ugly creature that can mutate, has a giant body, and comes from the bottom of the deepest abyss. The creature often makes terrible noises, and its giant carcass or skeleton can be found in dangerous places. From the desert highlands, the Courier peered deep through his mask for any threat. He saw a ravine covered with mountains, there was a dismembered carcass of an anaconda. Nearby was an inhabited area, and that was where his destination was. However, his eyes were fixed on the expanse of the corpses of the troops that had encroached on a tent. At first, he was afraid that something might happen there, but since he has a principle that work is more important than life, then do it or die. There was a jolt beneath him, but his legs didn't stop walking since this area was prone to minor earthquakes. The closer to his destination, his curiosity pushed him, even more, to go there. He spoke to himself as he passed the corpses of the Demolitionists, "You're still not deterred, are you? Using firearms and radiation against that creature..."

The Courier inspected the tent since his second task was to steal treasures from the dead. There was a treasure chest that had been opened, and its contents were empty as if it had been taken by someone. On a table was a meal of raw anaconda meat and a drink filled with fresh blood, next to it was an untouched metal object. He picked it up and dusted it with his hands, then said, “Jackpot! A Jetpack!”

(“Apparently, that man was in too much of a hurry to forget about this rare item, or could it be that he was so kind-hearted that he gave this item away?”)

The Courier was startled by the arrival of someone limping behind him. The Demolitionist Captain was injured, his legs could no longer support his fragile body, then he collapsed in front of him. The Courier didn't like to add negative karma, so he preferred to lean the old man against one of the tables. After all, the Jetpack in his hands wasn't going anywhere, and what could this old man do to him? Then he took something from his bag, an automatic injector loaded with various healing drugs and stimulants. He injected it into the dying old man's body.

"Message from whom?" asked the Captain. “I hope you have a good message this time...”

“From the Assassin Academy, they inquired where—”

"Stop it!" interrupted the Captain whose head was about to burst. "I can't take it anymore, it must be about that person again right?"

"Yeah, the content of the message this time is still the same, but the rewards keep increasing."

The old man articulated his annoyance while scratching his head, “First is the Chthonians, second is that man! Can't you see these corpses?! Are you still not satisfied to see us suffer?! Aren't the Nightblade and Occultist factions also incapable of dealing with that crazy cadet?!”

The Courier was also frustrated, "How many times have I told you old man, it's useless to use firearms and radiation against such a terrifying creature!"

“What do you mean by such a terrifying creature? A Chthonian or Fenrius Nightfang?”

“Of course, Fenrius Nightfang,” replied the Courier straightforwardly. “That's why I followed in his footsteps all the way here. And because of that Mad Cadet using my name, my bag is filled with hundreds of death threats and one-on-one challenge letters."

The Captain's face darkened and his gaze vacant. Since yesterday he thought this Courier warned him about the dangers of the Chthonians, but it turned out to be a human in question. He did not think that the man could attack his settlement because he just wanted to stop by for a moment to eat. Now he regretted not allowing the man to eat in peace, and the lives of his forty troops at the cost of his folly. Perhaps he needed to ask Chief Vergan about the three factions' temporary alliance to take care of the Mad Cadet.


The Demolitionist troops lurked from the highlands, and across from them was a wide field traversed by paths. They used these green hills as a suitable place for ambushes, and it was the first time they realized there was a hill this steep. They had been waiting for over three hours, and they had only one task: to wait for their target to arrive, and to surround him.

"What's his name again?" the captain asked his subordinates.

“Fenrius Nightfang—not a Malazenian name—from Ardaenor, perhaps. He is being hunted everywhere from the southern tip of the Blaze Desert to the Dragon Mountains.”

"Why haven't I heard of him?"

"Goon goes by many names, Nick O'Problem, Mr. Higgins, Kingpiss Asscrack..."

"Kingpiss Asscrack? What a clown name..."

Before long, dust and sand flew up to create a storm, dark clouds came as if a bad omen and the sun was out of sight. Lightning echoed back and forth, and in a matter of seconds, they felt as if they were in a different realm. From a distance, they saw someone running so fast that the surrounding sand was blown away, and it was like splashing waves from the ocean. That person was heading for their trap, and they knew it from the race track the guy used to run on.

They weren't the only faction aiming for his head, dozens of assassins from the Nightblade faction were seen chasing the man from behind, and this was the perfect time to show themselves too. The Captain pressed the trigger a few times, the gunshots towards the sky deafening everyone. A Jolly Roger Demolitionist (a skull head with two guns) was lifted from the hills, stopping the fugitive—and the Nightblade squad as well.

The fugitive Draconic's eyes darted back and forth, he was already surrounded from both sides. After he thought there was nothing worse than this, then a portal opened in the air and came the third faction, the pyromancers of the Occultist. The Demolitionists prepared with their rifles and pistols, the Nightblades with their crossbows, the Occultists with their fire magic, and all aimed at one person. The three strongest factions in Malazen came together with no agreement whatsoever other than their instinct to exterminate the troublemaker named Fenrius Nightfang, one of the new cadets of the Assassin Academy.

Fenrius raised both hands, instead of annihilating this man to dust, but for some reason, they were still holding back their weapons. The situation became tense as if they unified and understood what had to be done. What happened after the first trigger was fired, could mean that only bones and blood remained in this place. In order to prevent that, they naturally committed themselves to not attacking each other before getting the prize from this man's head, if anything, then dividing the prize into three.

“Kingpiss—Fenrius Nightfang!” snarled the Demolitionist Captain which was followed by a thunderous shout from the sky in hatred with the name 'Fenrius'. “You have something I want! Would you rather die, or give it to me?”

“Who is Fenries? His name is Banjo Cocaine!” rebutted the leader of the Nightblade. “What a coincidence, he also stole something valuable from us!”

“It seems we all have something in common,” said the lead pyromancer of the Occultist. “That means he has stolen the shards of the three Great Runes. However, in our records, this person's name is not Banjo or Fenries, but its Anti-Runaway."

There was a small earthquake that shook their feet, a strong wind passed from the east. The reddish sky slowly enveloped, and the monster's roar drew closer. The pungent stench had already spread around them. They saw a glaring giant centipede-type Chthonian with round eyes and shining like diamonds. Chthonian has a hard shell. The skin could withstand deadly attacks, and it had been proven that the weapons of these three factions were unable to penetrate it. From a distance, the creature glided in revolt as if in a state of great rage, it could smell the presence of the crowd, and remember the face of the person who had blown up its nest.

The Mad Cadet took a totem from his robes, and crushed it before their eyes, then wiped his hands of the dust. His action really took them by surprise because it was a precious totem of the Chthonic Cult. This man must have discovered Chthon's hole, and done something predictable. The earthquake was twice as loud. From behind the Demolitionist army, the green hill stood up, a green golem-like creature awakened from its slumber by a noisy roar. What an irony for those who tried to surround this man. Now they understood that every time this person left a mark, there would always be a being that held a grudge against him.

As the vessel of the Aetherial, the giant being's body was filled with green power. Sounds of screaming and panic erupted from the Demolitionist troops. Some people who were contaminated by the green virus shot their own comrades mercilessly. The Chthonian and Aetherial attacks swept across the overwhelmed armies of the three factions. They had no choice but to cooperate against these creatures.

Due to their intense battle, the ground in the Drought Desert cracked and spread in all directions, and this was what the Mad Cadet had been waiting for. His hands searched for something from inside his black robe, but couldn't feel anything. Then he realized that his Jetpack had been stolen by someone, or maybe fell while he was running. No wonder his body felt light, and the only thing left in his pocket was the rare plant seeds he had gotten from each of the four different deserts.

("Oh, shit, I screwed it up...")

Holes of sand sprang up from below, absorbing them into it, and the green giant's body fell on them. They had no chance to react when the desert they had stepped on collapsed—to the bottom of the abyss. All that remained was the sound of the Chthonian roars, and their presence had disappeared from this desert—after the highlands had buried them alive. This natural disaster left only a few survivors to tell the tale. The light of the sky splits the darkness, and the clouds are bright again: healthy without grudges. The sun came perched on the mountain and shone on the desert again. Things returned to normal as before, after the Mad Cadet was swallowed deep into the void and saw a flashback of his death. The next day, news of Fenrius Nightfang's death spread like a gust of wind throughout the Malazenia Peninsula.