Re: Behind the Eyes of Cipher [PG-13] ~Chapter 8 UP~
A forest in Hoenn
Nearly six years before present
The forest is a wondrous place. Vast, unknown, and full of interesting secrets and dark mysteries. Some are even home to many Pokemon that many Hoenians never knew existed, let alone lived in an environment like the forest. Such as the Blaziken.
Blaziken are known for their natural love of fighting, much like their pre-evolution, Combusken. During the day, the mothers nurture their baby Torchic, and the fathers hunt - quite an unusual form of hunter, one would think; to see a Blaziken ripping through the forest is an astonishing sight. As day fades to dusk, the fathers wrap up any remaining tasks that need to be done. Because the families are individual - a couple of Blaziken usually have three or four Torchic - it is rare that two families cross paths. But when it happens, hell breaks out in the forest.
A fight between two large, male Blaziken is better defined as a battle to the death. There are some other violent species of Pokemon like such, but none possess the raging fire that Blaziken do. The rare midnight glow produced by some rare forests are solely caused by the fierce flames of two fighting Blaziken. Their shrieks are occasional, as the fighting males usually communicate through kicks and punches. The noises around them - the woosh of trees going up in flames, the cries of their mates - are more prominent than the cries of the Blaziken themselves.
In his case, the battle was not merely the result of an unfortunate encounter for territory in the forest. It was revenge. He had three chicks to raise, and all on his own, for his mate had been killed by an overly territorial alpha. This battle was between the alpha and him, and it would be decided by the split blood of the dead loser.
He snarled as his beak and wrists flared furiously, the flames enveloping nearly his entire arm. His ankles provided the same effect. He was easily the most visible creature in the forest, but the forest had yet to see whom was the strongest. His opponent was much calmer than he, giving him a cool stare as his wrists ignited in return. The two gave each other deadly glares, neither one going to back down until the end.
But the fight was momentarily stopped then and there. An unnaturally powerful gust of wind rippled the forest's leaves into the two Blaziken's faces. The alpha male whirled around in shock. Seizing the moment, he flew through the air like a fatal bullet. In less than a millisecond he was kicking his opponent down, seeking nothing less than death. The alpha was utterly shocked once more, but could do nothing; after the first attack, they all saw the strange creature - the source of the wind - landing on their battleground.
He had never seen humans, or anything of the like, because of how deep he and his family had lived in the forest. Naturally, this was unthinkable to him. The creature glimmered in the moonlight, as if its hide were made of some shiny stone. Its wings were long and skinny, located at the creature's top, and they rotated possibly hundreds of times per second. Immediately he was thrown into disbelief - it couldn't be that this unnatural creature actually lived and breathed.
And, of course, it didn't. The creature was not real. That was the first time the Blaziken saw humans. Less than a minute later, he was tearing through the forest with no hope of escaping. The humans had him. He would never see his three chicks again, nor the forest, nor Hoenn in its entire.
"Ah, Commander Hester... you certainly have some explaining to do."
Caiden winced at the sound of Baron's voice. Normally it was more than unpleasant, but now especially he heard how it was swathed in savagery. Somehow it seemed different before. What a strange thing it was, revelation...
The crude Arcanine released him, making sure to leave a prominent gash in his arms. He cringed again, but reluctantly proceeded to stand in front of Baron. Naturally, he was much shorter than the commander, as he was with most people. That didn't intimidate him. Neither did the mad grin Baron wore on his face.
"You're lucky I didn't kill you," he said affably. "That's what I would have liked to do. But the Lord is... a little less than pleased with your recent decisions." His grin widened, enveloping the lower half of his thick face. "He said he'd have to see to your punishment personally. Now, doesn't that make you a little happier?"
"Why would it?" Caiden growled. To his response, Baron emitted a deep, raspy laugh.
"The Lord just loves you, now doesn't he, Hester!"
Caiden averted his gaze and clenched his teeth together, straining to keep from firing back. He knew he didn't have a chance against all of them.
But as he looked away, he noticed the expressions of the soldiers behind Baron. His entire sector stood before him, some lowering their heads at the pathetic sight of their commander. The ones who were not completely blank - their expressions obviously hardened from hatred and disgust - held tortured expressions. Caiden knew exactly what they were thinking. He had betrayed them all, especially those who were uncertain of their pacts with Cipher. He had destroyed what little hope they had left by leaving them. His decision had come to this.
Finally, as Baron was about to speak again, Caiden threw his head back and flung himself at his holder. Baron was larger than him, but he was somewhat taken by surprise. Seconds later, Blaziken released a Flamethrower upon the shadow Linoone and leaped away. And all of a sudden, Blaziken performed another act of impossible loyalty to Caiden.
Hurdling itself forcibly between the struggling Caiden and Baron, Blaziken shrieked and crushed its flaming leg down upon Baron's chest. The commander roared in pain and attempted to stand up. Without hesitation, Blaziken further knocked Caiden away, and proceeded to once more let loose a fatal Flamethrower directly at Baron's face.
When Blaziken relaxed its body and jumped lightly away, Baron James did not follow the Shadow. Nor did he move. Nor did he even twitch. His life had been terminated in mere seconds.
Aurora was speechless, holding both her hands over her mouth and sobbing violently at the sight of death. Eagun held her close and refused to move. Caiden closed his eyes temporarily and when he opened them, he nodded at Blaziken in a rather distant way. He didn't bother to approach Aurora and Eagun, but instead turned to the escaping Cipher agents. If they aren't dealt with, they'll easily tear the entire village apart out of rage.
Caiden and Blaziken raced tore down the path, not quite sure of what their plan of action was. Suddenly, one of his ex-subordinates came into view, standing and ordering the Arcanine to use Fire Blast on one of the larger buildings. A shopping mart. Caiden tackled him to the ground.
"You will exit this village," Caiden barked angrily. "And you will make the others follow. Or I will make of you what I made of Commander James. Is that understood?"
Shortly after, all that was left were the few defiant Shadows who had, evidently, not been tamed by their owners. Caiden and Blaziken made short work of them, and Caiden returned them in one of the numerous pokeballs he had previously stolen from the headquarters. Nothing they can do now... The villagers were frightened and confused, and Caiden knew clearly that they wouldn't accept the fact that Caiden had killed and kept at bay their enemies. Cries and screeches, similar to what Caiden had heard before, echoed throughout the trees and small buildings. He heard footsteps behind him, slow and hesitant.
"What... did you...?" Aurora mumbled incoherently. Her eyes were swollen and red, her nose watery, and her mouth trembling. Muddy tears were streaking down her face and onto Eagun's robes as he shielded her from Caiden.
Caiden was taken aback. "I... got rid of them."
"You bastard, we all know what you did," Eagun spat. "You brought them here! This is the second time you've -- "
"Father..." Aurora heaved a grieving sigh. "Don't you see what he did?"
Eagun's eyes blazed, his mouth gaping open in response.
"He... he protected us. Are you so blinded... that you can't see that he's helping us?" Aurora gently pushed herself away from Eagun so that she could stare him directly in the face. "Don't you get it now?" She paused and scrutinized her father's face. "Because I do."
Though the two were silent, the tension between Caiden and Eagun only strengthened. Caiden found himself immensely remorseful whenever he looked at Eagun. In turn, the old man could not stand the sight of Caiden. Yet his daughter seemed to have faith in him. It was an unexplainable thing.
"We need to get out of here," Caiden finally said. "I know they are gone now, and it seems like it's over... it isn't. Like I said, Cipher is powerful. Very powerful. No doubt the Lord is -- "
"Who is the Lord?" Eagun inquired severely.
Caiden cleared his throat. "The chief commander of Cipher. He, too, possesses unthinkable authority and power over all of the organization." He paused, glancing at Blaziken. The Pokemon held the same stance as Caiden. "In any case, the other commanders can locate me in no time. They will come here if we don't leave immediately."
Eagun wasted no time in his reply, though his voice was cold and unkind. "There is a hidden road that leads to the River Orre, where I know of a train station that goes west to Gateon Port. The route is short and I've traveled it before. We can make it..."
Caiden's mind went blank. Memories slowly crept back into his brain, and they were memories that he had left behind years ago. He wasn't quite sure he would be able to face seeing his hometown again, let alone his family.
Mother... and Sandy...? What happened to them? Suddenly, Caiden's heart thumped frantically against his chest, surely ready to escape his body entirely. He felt almost faint at the thought of his mother and his sister.
"...her house is somewhere in the southern port, I think," Aurora replied. Caiden glanced at her face and saw that her eyes had cleared. They were shining once more, as if she wasn't facing any problem in the world. She actually looked hopeful. She really must trust me...
It was then that he decided he couldn't let Aurora down. He would go back to Gateon Port and face the zone commander, and the entire sector, there. And somehow, he would bring them down.
The nearby Center, though humble in size, only supported a few people. The three of them did not go unnoticed among the small crowd of people. Strangely enough, no one looked at Caiden like he was an assassin.
The light of day had passed. Along the way there, Aurora stayed by Blaziken, studying the Pokemon diligently. No doubt she was still traumatized by what she had seen earlier, but Caiden noticed that her attitude had lightened. Blaziken, at first, shied away from her in natural repulsion, but later got used to her presence and even let her speak to it. Aurora obviously took a liking to Blaziken, and it seemed to return the favor. It provided a sense of security for her. Even though she watched it kill a human.
Caiden tried to keep his mind off distraught and traumatic thoughts by scrutinizing their relationship, when Aurora abruptly had told him, "You know, Blaziken looks up to you. It obviously feels worthy of your respect, even in this... state it's in."
Caiden's stomach dropped. Shadow...
"It must like you, then," Aurora added softly, gazing at Blaziken's face in wonder. The Pokemon snorted.
Eagun was silent, mostly in mortification. Mortification that his daughter had not only accepted this evil fiend, but put her trust into him; but even more mortified that he had offered to help him escape, by telling him where they would go. At the Center, Eagun shook his head back and forth while he contemplated this.
As Aurora offered to help the meek secretary, Eagun stepped outside. Caiden and Blaziken followed uncertainly, only to be met by Eagun's harsh words.
"...shady characters... Oh, anyone who would look like him." He jabbed a finger in Caiden's direction. It was almost like getting slapped across the face. Even though the old man hadn't said much, Caiden knew what he was thinking. All too well. I probably deserve it, anyway.
"No... sorry," the man replied skeptically. Eagun nodded hastily and walked away, ignoring Caiden's presence.
The boy decided to stay away from him. Blaziken growled, nodding its head in Eagun's direction and taking Caiden's shoulder in its claws. Caiden looked at it, locked eyes with its piercing gaze, and was forced to look away. This is hell... no, this is worse than hell.
"There's a train leaving in four minutes," Aurora called loudly, exiting the Center. "It's just this way. Let's go." She hurried off, Eagun close behind her. It hit Caiden that he would, in no less than two hours, be arriving back at the Port after two years.
Gateon Port... the commander... He squeezed his eyes shut, struggling to pull the memory from the depths of his brain. With little more thought, it swiftly came to him then, and his tired eyes widened in astonishment. Other scenes projected in his mind like a terrible horror movie. The Arcanine, the face, the grin, the intense flames. It had all come to him, and in either some seriously messed up coincidence, or in the form of karma's wicked strike. Baron James.
Last edited by Silvyre; 06-12-2009 at 12:36 AM.