Chapter 30:

Chapter Twenty‑Four: The Tragedy at the Rhyine

Beyond the Borders Volume 1

Another day passed as Klryizer stared at the photo on his dresser. He
missed her more then he lead on but like a soldier he hid the pain and
buried it deep inside. It had been eleven years since she had died after
giving birth to their daughter. The only happiness he felt was when he
would look at his daughter’s smiling face. However, in reality he knew
that the kingdom was on the verge of a civil war and it was only a
matter of time before there would be a line dividing them between the
East front and West front.Bookmark here

Klryizer was growing a bit older in his age. His hair had grown out to a
medium length along with a five o’ clock shadow that required him to
shave at least twice a week. The black tee‑shirt that he wore showed
many more wrinkles then it had before, mainly thanks to his wife’s
ability to be a good wife. She took care of him when he would forget to
take care of himself. In a way, she was his goddess, always watching
over him.Bookmark here

As he continued to stare at the picture in a quiescent state the sound
of his daughter’s voice soon jarred him from his thoughts.Bookmark here

“Daddy! Daddy! I learned to do magic,” she said with a cheerful smile.Bookmark here

Aryia looked very much like her dad. Long forest green hair and emerald
colored eyes were clear signs that she would be a wind magic‑user, if
only in due time. She bared no trace of her mother’s side, not in magic
or in looks. It was possible — in time — she would forget her own mother
without having a connection with her. Klryizer gently stroked his
daughter’s hair and smiled.Bookmark here

“That’s great.”Bookmark here

Klryizer continued to pack his bags for the black operation that was
said to take place in a few hours. The Death Stalkers had been called in
to quell a riot in the City of Rhyine although to him it was more like
massacre. He didn’t like the idea of killing his own people but when he
looked at his daughter he knew it was for her safety. Without his
daughter he would be nothing, and he was well aware of that.Bookmark here

Once he had packed everything he needed — including his Death Stalker
<abbr>BDU</abbr> and weapons — he threw his backpack over his shoulder.
Like a good father he picked up his daughter and planted a kiss on her
forehead as he carried her downstairs.Bookmark here

“Remember Aryia be a good girl and be nice to Priscilla.”Bookmark here

“Okay daddy.”Bookmark here

After making his way downstairs and into the lobby he looked to
Priscilla — who had the longest name in all of Sylveria.Bookmark here

“Sorry to ask you to look after my daughter like this again Priscilla.”Bookmark here

“Its fine Klry. Marilyn loves playing with her,” she said with a smile.Bookmark here

“I am glad she has a close friend that is her age,” Klryizer said as he
put his daughter down.Bookmark here

“Daddy when you go on your trip can I get a present if I am really
really good?”Bookmark here

Klryizer hated the thought of lying to his daughter but there was no way
around it. He was under orders not to speak of it to anyone but the
people involved. With a smile he bent down to eye level with Aryia.Bookmark here

“Sure sweetie. You have to be good, promise?”Bookmark here

“Promise!”Bookmark here

Klryizer made his way out the door where a cargo truck was waiting to
pick him up. Without any further delay he got on the back of the truck.
The truck was rather long in length and had a large dull green cloth
drawn over the back of the bed. This was to hide the Death Stalkers as
they drove through the city. In the back of the truck was Major Lyreh
and First Lieutenant Celeste.Bookmark here

Time had clearly not been nice to Lyreh as her forty‑seven year old body
looked the worse for wear. Celeste was fairing a bit better as she was
pushing into the late thirties. Klryizer sat across from Lyreh but did
not say a word. No one did as the truck started up with a loud roar and
headed for its destination. Everyone there knew why they were here but
no one wanted to face it.Bookmark here

“Right, lets go over what our mission is. There are increasing riots in
the City of Rhyine and we have been called in to stop them. We will be
working with the army so check your targets and no friendly fire.”Bookmark here

Silence…Bookmark here

“As you know… kill on‑site. Emperor’s orders.”Bookmark here

The words echoed throughout Klryizer’s head. No one wanted to do this
but what could they do? Refusing to obey an order from the Emperor was
grounds for treason. With the sound of the cargo truck heading down a
bumpy dirt road Lyreh looked to Klryizer and Celeste. She knew they
didn’t want to do this but would do their duty until their last breath.Bookmark here

“If there are no questions then gear up.”Bookmark here

The three of them got changed into their Death Stalker <abbr>BDU</abbr>s
and loaded their rifles. As the truck continued on twilight fell below
the horizon, the perfect time for Death Stalkers. Klryizer readied
himself mentally for what he had to do. Even Lyreh had to prepare
herself.Bookmark here

“Right, lets get this over with,” Lyreh said as the truck came to a
halt.Bookmark here

All of them disembarked from the truck as they pulled up their hoods.
With a simple hand signal Lyreh ordered them to move out and clear the
city. As they entered the city a loud explosion was heard off in the
distance, followed by another one. The army was testing a new piece of
equipment they had acquired from the Death Stalkers. It was a new weapon
that allowed grenades to be propelled into the sky and hit the enemy. It
was called a mortar that Klryizer had named himself. Looking back,
however, he questioned why he had named it that in the first place.Bookmark here

As the explosions continued followed by gunshots, people started to flee
their homes in terror and fear. Klryizer swept an alleyway with his
weapon at the ready; his finger resting lightly on the trigger.
Suddenly, two people dashed in front of his line of sight. Without a
second thought he squeezed the trigger twice, nailing both civilians in
the head. They dropped to the ground like rocks. Klryizer didn’t even
stop to look at the two people he had killed. There was no time to drown
himself in sorrow, that would come later.Bookmark here

Crossing over into another street Klryizer met up with Celeste. With a
signal of her hand she told Klryizer to cover the right side of the
street. He nodded as he held his rifle at the ready. The two of them
stalked down the street as if they were one person. Anyone that came
into their field of view dropped like a moth to a flame. As the two of
them turned the corner into an alleyway Celeste trained her sights down
the left half of it as Klryizer watched the right.Bookmark here

The two of them moved to the end of the alleyway with their weapons at
the ready. As they came to the end of the alley Klryizer looked to the
right while Celeste covered the left.Bookmark here

“Four targets, left side,” Celeste called out.Bookmark here

Klryizer quickly turned one hundred eighty degrees on the ball of his
foot, lining up next to Celeste as she fired off two shots at the adults
that crossed into her fire arc. Like before Klryizer squeezed the
trigger but found himself stopping before the bullet could fire. In
front of him were two kids that had to be around his daughter’s age.
Klryizer had killed many people in his life, however, killing children
was something he could not bring himself to do.Bookmark here

“The other two are kids…”Bookmark here

Klryizer began to lower his guard as Celeste watched him out the corner
of her eye.Bookmark here

“Shoot everyone on sight—”Bookmark here

Before she could finish her sentence Celeste found herself encased in a
coffin made of solid rock. Without a fraction of a second she was
crushed alive as her body no longer drew breath.Bookmark here

“Celeste!”Bookmark here

Just like her friend and comrade Klryizer soon found himself in a coffin
of dirt and rock. Suffocation was a painful way to die but he was proud
that he could at least think of his daughter with his last breath of
life.Bookmark here

Darkness soon overtook him.Bookmark here

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