JR’s Characters

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    With the orb of Raijin, the volatile guardian of electricity, he is one of the more dangerous of the elements. Erratic, intelligent and not given to working with others often, he can use his orb to control any electrical object and transform himself into pure electricity to travel at hyper speed through electric cables.




    The person who possesses the orb of metal, containing the spirit of the steely guardian of the ore, Jinshu. She is highly confident, often boastful, and can come across as arrogant and self-centred. She takes pride in how she looks and how people see her. Her orb gives her the ability to absorb the properties of any metal she touches, making her quite a tough opponent, although she hasn’t got full control of this ability yet and always leaves one spot of her body normal, therefore open to attack.




    The wielder of the unparalleled force that is the orb of time, within which is Shunya, the lord of the ether. Whilst he is considered a member of the team of darkness, he does not affiliate himself with them much, preferring to act on his own. He is mostly passive when it comes to the battles the other elements fight, choosing instead not to get involved. However, when he does choose to fight, he is untouchable, able to manipulate the flow of time it’s self, slowing it down so his attacks seem to pass in the blink of an eye, or stopping it altogether. He is a useful ally, but not one who gives aid easily.



    And, finally.


    The defining member of the team of darkness and holder of it’s title orb, containing the mysterious and possibly malevolent spirit of darkness, Avatea. Little is known about his past, only that he must have a large amount of darkness in his heart to be able to control such a powerful orb, although he seems to be trying to do good now. It is said that when the power of the orbs of light and darkness combine, the full power of the elements will be unleashed.



    love em!



    Thanks Scatman.

    Team shots now.


    The elements whose spirits have the most heroic natures. Led by the holder of the orb of fire, they act in defence of the earth, protecting it from the forces that wish to destroy it.


    The team whose orb spirits are less inclined towards being heroic. Whilst they do still defend the world like team light, they do it in their own way, sometimes leading them in to conflict with their opposite numbers.

    I have to make a quick apology to Vampyrist. I didn’t use your face from the heads- winners bit, I took inspiration from your cover picture on deviant art. Your expression didn’t really fit the description you’d given me, I hope it’s ok as it is.

    As with all of my series, critique is much welcomed. What do you like, what don’t you like, who is your favourite, e.t.c.

    I’ll be back later with some Solarians for your inspection.



    Cool and as for my face, it’s fine. It wasn’t my best picture and the end result for mine and for everyone’s is great!



    Glad you like it.

    Now, some unfinished business. As I have finished my edits to the two winning designs for my Solaria contest that finished on Monday, I shall now post up the group shot. Massive credit and thanks to Blue Blazer and NHA247 for giving me such awesome designs to incorporate into the group.


    Purple- Centauri (Trust)
    A member of a highly emotionally sensitive race from the 6th sector, Lain Mal has always known who to trust and who not to. She can tell by sight if a stranger has good or ill intentions, but she often trusts unconditionally, hoping that she can persuade those who wish her ill to change. Her trusting nature drew the Centauri Solarian entity to her at a young age and she was raised and tutored by Epsilon, whom she trusts more than anyone else.

    Yellow- Andromeda (Joy)
    Born on a planet in the 42nd sector, on a planet of stunning beauty and amazing wildlife, Kal Manet was an explorer and a thrill seeker, one who loved to live life to the full. However, she was gravely injured during one of her many fool hardy exploits, but her life was saved by the Solarian entity, Andromeda, who sensed in her great joy. It offered to show her the stars and even greater wonders that she could not imagine, which Kal quickly accepted.

    Orange- Carin (Humility)
    Vova Vevu is and was one of the greatest gladiator champions from his home world. He was undefeated for years and years, which gave him a serious complex, even betting on his fights, making him rich. This continued until he pretty much had his head handed to him by some opponent who was way better to him. He was seriously put out of commission from the coliseum, the only life he’d ever known. Now gravely injured, he was forced to go out and live amongst those who had watched him fight, having lost all of his money on his last fight. However he found the people he was now forced to live with welcoming and friendly, even though he would not have given them a second glance when he was wealthy. His experience humbled him, drawing the Solarian, Carin, to him. Using the Solarians power, he pledged to aid those who had shown him that life was not all about winning.

    White- Epsilon (Hope)
    The oldest of the current Solarians, seemingly immortal. No-one quite knows what race Epsilon belongs to, where he is from or what his real name is. He trains all new Solarians and is the most adept at using his power, able to open portals to any sector of space. It is said that there have been very few white Solarians, and that all are still alive, their power just passed from one to the next. The greatest legends of the Solaria centre around the white light of hope, for it is said that if the holder dies it shall bring about the end of the universe.

    Red- Tucana (Rage)
    A member of a brutish race of aliens known for their violent natures, RAM always stood out as the most destructive. He killed many during his time on his home planet, decimating whole villages. In the end, he was exiled from his home planet, set adrift in the cosmos. During his exile he was captured by scientists, who studied him and discovered a rare dysfunction in his brain that caused his insatiable appetite for violence. However his captivity just made RAM more angry, until he eventually broke free and slaughtered the scientists. It was at the moment that the last scientist took his last breath that RAM was discovered by the Rage Solarian, unleashing his worst onto the universe.

    Blue- Orion (Courage)
    Constantly bullied at school and at home, by an alcoholic and violent father, Matt Stewart always knew he had to stand up for the weak, because no-one else will. His courageous act of saving a young woman from being mugged and killed by three armed gang members, an act which saw him hospitalised, drew the Orion Solarian to him. However, it also brought Odite, an energy draining alien. Matt managed to defeat Odite, a feat for even an experienced Solarian to be proud of, and now stands as the newest member of a line of the bravest beings ever to have lived, the blue Solarians.

    Green- Cygnus (Compassion)
    Lut Muk Nar once had a family and a home. A member of a highly empathic race, Lut was a doctor and a father, he devoted his life to helping others. However, his home planet was invaded, his family slaughtered and himself captured. However, Lut’s compassion did not waver, instead he helped the wounded and sick amongst his captors, drawing the Solarian of Compassion, Cygnus, to him, freeing him and allowing him to aid anyone in the universe who needs his compassion.

    Black- Corvus (Greed)
    A theif, murderer and con-man, Talad Thiis is a wanted man in virtually every sector of the galaxy. His greed is legendary, he will kill for even a credit, so when he heard that the holder of the Generosity Solarian was in his sector, he had to have it. He killed the Solarian, stealing and corrupting the entity and taking its power for himself. He now travels the galaxy as Corvus, taking anything he wants and enslaving those he meets, to serve him as his empire grows.

    Pink- Procyon (Love)
    Coming from a planet whose people live in a highly communal society, Yana Eron lived a perfect life for pretty much all of her life. Living within a very closely knit family group, she grew up knowing only love. She even had the perfect marriage, that is until her city was attacked by a vicious wave of space pirates, who slaughtered all of the inhabitants but her. She survived by hiding away in the sewage plant. Her love kept her strong and drew the Solarian Procyon to her. She has now found a new family amongst the Solarians and is learning to cope with her grief, spreading love through out the universe.

    Silver- Vela (Doubt)
    The most mysterious of the Solarians, the silver Vela are wanderers. Often chosen from solitary species, the Solarians who wield this power are gifted the ability of foresight. However, they always see two possibilities instead of one definite future, meaning their prophecies are always clouded in doubt.



    Now I’ll move on to something a bit different.

    Mr X

    The Renegade Chronicles

    The world ended before I was born.
    I don’t have much of an idea what happened. There was a war and the world I was born into was the aftermath. This world is one of oppression. One ruled by a corporation called Absence Incorporated (AbInc for short). The police, army and any other organisation that could oppose AbInc were dissolved and replaced by their private army, the Faceless, named after their identity masking uniforms. My parents where both killed fighting the faceless and I was raised by the freedom fighters, the Renegades. This is my story.

    Chapter 1
    The gas tanks exploded with ferocious force. It sent flaming debris everywhere, whilst me and Scout Sparrow flew about a hundred metres back. I don’t really need to tell you, it was fun, although I’d imagine the landing could have been smoother.
    As we picked ourselves up, we could hear the sirens of the incoming faceless. Now usually we wouldn’t back down from a fight with them but we’d just been blown half way to Zone 8, so now was not the time.
    This was our fifth successful raid on the supply trucks heading for Utopia. We must be the most wanted in Zone 4 by now. The zones are not an easy place to live. The war had a huge toll on the atmosphere. Now the zones are mostly desert, bombarded with radiation. It is a good idea to stay inside during the day. We operate mostly by night. Radiation does strange stuff to you if you stay out in it too long. That’s why the faceless don’t come looking for us that often. A few towns remain under their radiation shields, but hardly anyone who has a choice lives in the zones. Utopia has closed its doors due to over-crowding, which has made the people desperate. The zones are dying on their feet.
    By the time we’d made it back to our base, which is a converted old mechanics shop on the outskirts of Jago, just before dawn. It was one of the first Renegade bases in zone 4. It may not look like much on the outside, but under the ground it has living space for about 10 at a time. Not that there’s that many of us anymore. We had a full house at the end of the winter but we’ve lost a few of our team since then. Agent Revenge went in the spring; he got caught by some faceless sabotaging the detention centre. Battery Cola went soon after; she got ghosted by an agent. That one was hard, she was a good fighter and she had a lot of spirit.
    Of our motley group, only Venus Hunter was at the base when we got back. Venus is the kind hearted one of the group, always trying to be of help when ever it’s needed. She has bright pink hair, so you can see her coming a mile off. She is very quick thinking when needed and is good at getting us out of difficult spots. Her ray gun usually strapped to her thigh for easy access. But as we walked in she was sitting at the front desk, with her gun out on the table. The radio was on; Satellite Star’s show was coming through over the airwaves. She looked up as I entered. She gave me a nod as I walked over but, as usual, she ignored Scout Sparrow as he walked past. I guess she still hasn’t forgiven him for what happened to Battery Cola, even though he couldn’t have done anything to save her.
    “Hey Venus,” I said. “Where’s Doc Dread?”
    “Back in the garage, I think. He’s having a go at the ‘vette.”
    By that she means my Corvette. It’s 1969 vintage, in gold with a black dragon on the bonnet and massively turned engine. It’s been out of action since we got run off the road by an agent a few weeks ago.
    “Good, I’ve been asking him to look at that for ages.” I said as I turned to go to the garage.”Are Crash and Night-Streamer back yet?”
    “Nah, not yet. Crash said he wanted to check something out before they came back. Over by the radiation shield generators out west of the town.”
    Crash Solar is our leader. Not by choice, it’s just he was the oldest and most experienced when our last leader, Lithium Killer, got ghosted. He’s a good leader, but he has become quite cautious since we lost Revenge and Cola. Night-Streamer is Venus’ sister. She’s a great team member, she’ll help you in any way she can and if anyone gets out of line, she’ll kick them in the balls. Much like her sister really.
    As I made my way to the garage I could hear the sound of the local zone radio, DMT (detonation musical transmissions). It’s one of the few stations that have access to music from before the war, as one of the first things AbInc did was destroy any type of subcultures. Doc Dread is really into stuff from back then. Makes no sense to me sometimes, although some of the stuff is quite good, give me Hostile Intent any day.
    The garage was a mess. Parts of the car were all over the place. The car (what was left of it) was up on jacks and Doc Dread was underneath, doing something with the suspension. He didn’t seem to notice when I came in and carried on with whatever he was doing. I cleared my throat and he jumped, smacking his head on the chassis.
    “S’up” I said as he jumped to his feet and turned on me.
    “WHAT THE FUCK DID YOU DO THAT FOR” he shouted at me, getting right up to my face, which is quite a feat for him ’cause he’s about half a foot taller than me. “CAN’T YOU KNOCK OR SOMETHING”
    “You wouldn’t have heard me” I said walking round to the worktable and picking up a suspension damper. “You shouldn’t have that radio up so loud. Anyway, how is it?”
    “It’s fine” He sighed irritably, snatching the damper from my hand and putting it back on the worktable. “The front left suspension was collapsed. I’ve replaced the lot, it need upgrading anyway. How did you manage to make it collapse anyway?”
    “Got chased of the road by that agent, you know that bald guy. We ended up in the Boulder Fields.”
    Just then Sparrow appeared in the door. His face was white and he looked worried.
    “Quick guys, we need you!” He said. His voice was shaking.



    Phenom!great stuff!hey can you PM me a small tutorial on how to use word for group shots?If you are so inclined of course.



    Scout Sparrow


    Chapter 2

    We ran out the front. The sun was high in the sky by now and it threw a whole new spectrum of colors over the desert. Mostly brown. Then I saw Venus, hunched over a figure lying about a hundred meters from us. I realized who it was and my heart fell like a stone that had been dropped into a lake tied to a lead weight. It was Night-Streamer.
    I pelted over to where they were. Night-Streamer was covered in burn marks from where she’d obviously taken blaster shots as well as a larger burnt area on her coat. Her clothes were scorched and ripped and I could see a number of nasty looking gashes that could only have come from a knife of some sort. The hair on the back of her head was mated and covered in blood from what looked like an impact of a heavy blow.
    “Get her inside,” I said to Sparrow. He nodded and went over to Venus. Venus didn’t look up as Sparrow lifted Night-Streamer from her. I turned to Doc Dread.
    “Go with him, if anything happens contact me on my short wave transmitter.”
    Doc Dread looked solemn as he turned and followed Sparrow back to the garage. I turned back to Venus.
    “I’m sorry, but I’m going to need help out here and, although I’m sure Sparrow would be grateful for the help, I’d rather you weren’t in his face for the moment. Ok?”
    She looked up. Her eyes were full off tears. I knelt down so I was at her eye level.
    “Look” I said, “We need to find out what happened. Crash is probably still out there. It’s the best thing we can do if we want to help Night- Streamer, is to find out what happened.”
    She nodded and wiped her eyes with the bandana she wears around her wrist. I offered my hand as I stood up.
    “Come on, we’d better get going. The desert dogs are going to be all over this place in an hour.”
    It didn’t take us long to find Crash.
    We followed the trail that Night-Streamer had made dragging her-self back, until we got right out of the outskirts of town. We could see smoke rising in the distance and as we got closer we could see the remains of a burnt out car.
    The smell was awful. I have smelt death before, doing this you smell it frequently, but combining it with the stench of burnt rubber, the fuel & the effect of the radiation makes the smell unbearable. Inside the car were the burnt out remains of a body. The car was blackened, the windows had blown out & there was no interior left. There were footprints everywhere and tyre marks leading away from the wreck in both directions. Whilst I was examining the area around the car, Venus had gone over to the body. She looked up after a few seconds.
    “It’s definitely Crash, look, his symbol” She held up a charred piece of string. Dangling from it was a cartoon burst inside a circle, Crash’s Renegade symbol.
    “This had to have been the faceless,” I said turning back to the tracks. “These boot marks are standard faceless issue”
    Suddenly I noticed something odd about the tracks to my left.
    “However” I said kneeling down next to them “These aren’t. These look more like black market pre-war military style, no faceless wears these.”
    Venus came over to where I was for a closer look (at least, that’s what she made out, I think she just wanted to be close to some-one after this ordeal).
    “Who wears pre-war military boots?”
    “I don’t know. A few Renegades maybe, Halos definitely, but they never come this far out from Monroeville.”
    Just then my transmitter buzzed. I whipped it out of its holster with unusual energy for such a situation. Maybe I just needed good news. Though I doubted I was going to get any.
    “Yo. What’s the latest Doc?”
    The Docs face appeared on the screen. He looked strange; something not helped by the bad lighting in the transmitter room.
    “We’ve just received a distress transmission.” The Docs voice sounded concerned, even through the usual poor quality sound of the transmitters. “The signal is even worse than usual”
    I looked at Venus. She seemed just as puzzled. It isn’t very often we get any outside transmissions. Ok, we never get outside transmissions, except with a few notable exceptions & the less said about those the better.
    “Ok, send it.”
    The Docs face disappeared from the screen & was replaced by the face of a girl. She had to be around the same age as me, maybe a few years younger. Her hair was dark and messy. She looked like she hadn’t slept for days & like she had been running for most of those days. Her voice was very small, even over the transmitter.
    “Hello, is anyone there?”
    “Hi” I said. As I replied to her transmission I could see her face light up on the screen.
    “Thank god. Some-ones answered me. I’ve been trying all day.”
    “Who are you?”
    “My name is Ruby-Star, I was a member of the Zone 4 Renegades from out west of Jago, but we were attacked by faceless. I think I’m the last one. I’ve been trying to find another team for 3 weeks now.”
    “Ok Ruby-Star, I need to know where you are. To be on this wave length you must be in Jago, but we need to know which part.”
    “I’m not sure. I passed a sign a few miles back that said Monroeville Market, so that’s the nearest marker I’ve got.”
    That was just what I didn’t want to hear. Monroeville is the most dangerous part of Zone 4. It is the sector of Jago, which surrounds the Hell House, which is where the Halos live. The Halos are an underground gang that started before the war. They’re anarchists, drug runners & murderers and they will attack anyone who strays near one of their “holes”. We try to avoid going anywhere near Monroeville if possible, but this was a special situation. We never refuse to help another Renegade.
    “Ok, we’re coming. Stay where you are. We’ll be with you as soon as possible. If you have some sort of radio signal transmitter, I suggest you switch it on now.”
    “Ok I’ve done that. I’m transmitting that signal on 101.4.”
    The signal fizzed out as Doc Dread came back on the screen.
    “You get all that?” I asked.
    “Yeah, you want me to get everything ready for you and Venus?”
    “No, tell Sparrow he is coming, Venus can stay with Night-Streamer. This is going to be dangerous and I want Sparrows scouting skills with us.”
    “Yeah, understood.”
    “Also, Doc, if the ‘Vette is out of action, best kit the Charger out. We’ll need major firepower here so the bazooka will be needed & tell Sparrow to take the sniper. We’ll be back in a few minutes”
    “Did you find Crash?” The question was tentative, as if he didn’t want to know the answer.
    “Yes. He’s gone.”



    Doctor Dread


    Chapter 3

    When we got back Doc Dread was out front loading up the Charger. He nodded to us as we got closer.
    “Sparrow will be up in a moment, he’s just finishing off downstairs.”
    I nodded and shot Venus a sideways look. I could see she was getting twitchy, obviously wanting to be with her sister.
    “Go on,” I said “I’m sure she’ll be glad of your company.”
    She gave me a grateful smile and ran inside, almost knocking Sparrow over as he came out. He shot her a faux-annoyed look and walked over to the car, sniper over his shoulder.
    “How is she?” I asked as he loaded his sniper into the car.
    “She’s doing fine. I’ve stitched her up, most of her injuries where flesh wounds so she should be up by tomorrow.”
    “Good, we may need her soon. Get in, I need you to drive. Doc, keep that bazooka close, who knows what’s gonna happen here.”
    It was a surprisingly quiet trip into town. Most people where shut inside, staying out of the way of any random faceless patrols. They like to catch people off-guard and punish anyone who the find out when they are around. The only people you see around at this time of day are the agents, and that usually means a gunfight.
    We entered Monroeville about half an hour after we set off. There aren’t that many road signs up and only the faceless have access to maps but you can always tell when you enter Monroeville. It seems to suddenly get darker and colder, the buildings become ruined and graffitied. The faceless don’t come down here if they can avoid it, so the halos do what they want. A few streets in after you enter Monroeville you can start to see the Hell House. It used to be a shopping mall before the war apparently and it dominates the skyline around here. Luckily for us, the Halos aren’t all that active during the day, otherwise we would probably be dead by now. I checked the cars transmitter. We should have got a signal by now; we were tuned to the right frequency. Either something was blocking our signal or something was stopping Ruby-Star from transmitting. That thought made me feel uneasy. It was bad enough having to come out here at all, without the added bonus of not being able to find what we were looking for. Just then Sparrow stopped quite suddenly. I turned round to see what was wrong. He pointed down a side street. I could see a person walking down the street towards us.
    I nodded to Doc Dread and we both got out. Now we were closer I could see it was Ruby-Star, but there was something wrong. I couldn’t see anything but it felt weird. Then I saw it. In the shadows and in the buildings, shapes where moving. She was being followed. Doc Dread had noticed as well, he gave me a look and nodded in the direction of the closest building.
    “We need her to get here quick or we’re gonna have a hell of a time getting out of here.”
    I nodded in agreement. This was a tense situation. Ruby-Star was obviously unaware of the danger she was in. Just then she lifted her head, as if she had only just noticed us, and started waving. Rather stupidly Doc Dread started waving back and shouting.
    “Get out of there, you’re being followed.”
    No sooner had the words left his mouth the ally exploded. Halos burst from every window and every door of every building. Ruby-Star took a backwards glance over her shoulder and ran. Me and Doc Dread grabbed our blasters. I got the closest Halo straight out, in the head. I could hear the sound of blasting from behind me, which must mean that Sparrow had the sniper out. Ruby-Star was getting close, but it didn’t look good. We we’re outnumbered at least 20-1. Then I saw Doc Dread run forward out of the corner of my eye. Three Halos fell as he ran towards Ruby-Star. What happened next was a blur. We broke and ran. I don’t remember much until we reached the car. I remember looking back and seeing Doc Dread, Ruby-Star and about 200 Halos running after me. Sparrow had the car moving when I got there. I grabbed Ruby-Star’s hand and pulled her in, but Doc Dread was out of reach. Then it happened. I heard a shot and Doc Dread fell forward, his hand still outstretched. It all seemed to happen in slow motion. I felt a lurch as Sparrow accelerated away, but I couldn’t take my eyes off the crumpled form on the floor that had, a few seconds ago, been my friend.
    Time seemed to go very slowly as we tried to make our escape from Monroeville. I was only slightly aware of the sun setting on the horizon as we screeched out onto the main street. We were all silent. There wasn’t really much to say. After a few minutes, Sparrow slammed on the brakes and swore loudly, taking me and Ruby-Star both by surprise.
    “What! What’s wrong?” I exclaimed. Then it hit me. “Shit.”
    “What is it?” Ruby-Star asked incredulously. She looked worried.
    “We’ve exceeded curfew,” Sparrow explained. “We can’t get out of the city. The radiation shields have densified so as not to let any of the animals in or any of the people out.”
    “We’re gonna have to find some-where to stash the car.” I said, half to Sparrow, half to my-self. I didn’t like the idea of being stuck in town after-dark. Agents usually like to roam the streets after the sun has gone down.
    “There’s an alley over there” Sparrow pointed to this small side street a few hundred yards ahead of us. “Looks quite quiet, we should be able to hide it down there until the morning.”
    I nodded. It did look like our best bet. We couldn’t afford to be driving round any longer than we had to.



    Venus Hunter


    Chapter 4

    A few seconds later we had the car parked up down the alley. Sparrow had started work on the side door of the building. I had gone off down the alley a few steps and sat myself down on one of the trash cars. I was only slightly aware of Ruby-Star walking over and sitting down next to me.
    “It’s beautiful isn’t it, the sky.” She said. I sort of half nodded in response. I wasn’t really in the mood for romanticizing.
    “Never really ever looked at it before.” She carried on. “I was always too busy running. I wonder what it looked like before the war.”
    She glanced over at me and here expression became more solemn.
    “I’m sorry about your friend. I won’t have gone down there if I knew how dangerous it was.”
    Just then I heard some footsteps on the main street. I put my hand over Ruby-Star’s mouth and waved to Sparrow to stop what he was doing. I glanced round towards the main street and he nodded.
    “Ok Ruby-Star, we need to be really quiet” I whispered. “So when I take my hand away you need to be silent, got it.” She nodded.
    I maneuvered myself into a position so I could see what was happening in the street without being seen. The others did the same. It was pitch black by now and the only light we had was from the street lamps. The light from the lamps was enough, though, to illuminate the scene playing out in front of us.
    There was an Agent standing in the street. He was wearing the standard long grey coat, but unlike other Agents, he had long slicked back black hair. I shivered. We’d come across this Agent before. His name is Zane and he has a nasty streak a mile wide. He was the one who ghosted Battery Cola.
    He was standing over this guy who was lying in the road. By his dress sense he could only be a Renegade. He was wearing a bright blue Hostile Intent t-shirt with faded grey skinny jeans and a red leather jacket. Blood was trickling from his mouth. I heard Ruby-Star gasp under her breath behind me. I nearly turned round to her, but then Zane started to speak.
    “Well, this is a very great honor for me.” He said in a very cold, ironic voice. His hand twitched towards his holster. “The great Chaos Trail. The leader of the Zone 4 Renegades of the Western Plains. I’m flattered that you could take the time to meet me.”
    He paused as if expecting an answer. When none was forth coming he shook his head in mock disappointment.
    “Not feeling talkative are we. Well I can soon remedy that.” He wiped out his gun and shot the ground in between Chaos Trail’s legs. I could see him trying to drag himself backwards. Zane walked closer and put his foot on the Chaos Trail’s chest to stop him crawling any further back, leaning forward until they were almost nose to nose and the gun was pointing towards the side of Chaos Trail’s head. I looked over my shoulder, about to suggest that we go and help out our fellow Renegade, when Zane started to talk again.
    “Listen.” His voice was a menacing hiss as he gestured around the street with his free hand. “No-one is here. Now tell me about these plans you are making with Arcade Angel.”
    “You’ll have to kill me ‘cause I’m not telling you anything.” Chaos Trail said defiantly.
    Zane gave a cruel smile and there was a flash from his gun. I felt Ruby-Star recoil and Sparrow glanced over to me. I tried to avoid his gaze. There was no way I was going to try to save Chaos Trail, even with 3 of us against one agent. We were tired and demoralized and we would have been no match for Zane even if we had been a full fitness. I’ve seen him take out 30 Halos at once before and he wasn’t even armed. I looked back into the street. Zane was still standing over Chaos Trail’s dead body. It looked like he was in deep thought or like he was listening for something. I froze at the thought that he might have known we where there.
    After a few very tense moments Zane turned on his heels and walked off down the street. We waited another few seconds to make sure he was gone before venturing out onto the street. Ruby-Star ran straight over to her fallen friend whilst me and Sparrow both drew our guns. Zane may have gone, but we were still not safe.
    “Ruby-Star, we need to go.” I said, putting a hand on her shoulder. “We’re not safe here.”
    “We could have helped him” her voice was cracked and she spoke through sobs. She shook my hand off vigorously.
    “There was nothing we could do,” Sparrow said comfortingly. He knelt down next to her and took her hand to help her to her feet. She held on to him and cried into his shoulder as he comforted her.
    “We’re in no state to fight and that agent would have ghosted us easily,” I said as I knelt down to examine Chaos Trail’s body. “Believe me, we’ve met him before. He killed one of our friends a few weeks ago.”
    “What shall we do with him,” Sparrow said nodding towards Chaos Trail. I looked down on his crumpled body. We had room in the car now, but I don’t think anyone would want to have a dead body in the car with us. Shoving him in the trunk seemed a bit harsh and it would look a bit suspicious if the faceless had been informed of his death and turned up to find him missing.
    “Leave him here” I said. Ruby-Star started crying again as I said it. “If the faceless come and he’s not here they’ll know that someone else was out here. Get her inside and get her warmed up, she’s had quite a shock. I’ll be a minute.”
    Sparrow nodded and led Ruby-Star off back to the alley. I waited until they were out of sight before knelling down again. I removed Chaos Trail’s gun from its holster and shoved it in my jacket pocket. I checked his pockets. There wasn’t much, some gum, a canteen of what smelt like strong whiskey, his symbol and a small shred of paper with the word Courage written on it. I pocketed the canteen and his symbol; it may be of some small comfort to Ruby-Star. I let the paper fly away as I turned and headed after the others. It had been a day that I would like to end.



    Love the hair on Venus Hunter! Cool



    Thanks Kaylin

    Night Streamer


    Chapter 5

    The morning was very bright. We woke up at the crack of dawn but the sun rises fast in the zones as there are no clouds to obscure the sun’s rays. We packed the Charger in silence. The less noise we made the less likely we were to be caught. The faceless are changing over around about dawn so it is the perfect time to get out of town. The journey its self was easy, we didn’t see anyone around. Of course it is understandable; now-a-day’s no-one goes out anywhere. They’re too sacred. Within the hour we were back at base. Venus was waiting outside for us.
    “What happened?” She asked as we got out the car. “We expected you back yesterday…. Hang on.”
    Her expression became more worried. “Where’s Doc Dread?”
    She looked between me and Sparrow expectantly. I shook my head and I could see her heart sink.
    “How’s Night-Streamer?” Sparrow asked in a vain attempt to try and cheer her up.
    “She’s fine,” Venus said gloomily. “She’s in her room.”
    I looked back at Ruby-Star who was standing next to the car, obviously unsure of what to do.
    “Venus, this is Ruby-Star.” I said beckoning Ruby-Star forward. “She’s going to be with us for a while. I want you to take her inside, sort her out in one of the disused rooms and show her around.”
    Venus nodded and walked off inside with Ruby-Star in tow.
    With Venus and Ruby-Star gone I turned to Sparrow. He was looking out over the wasteland. I walked over to him.
    “What’s up?” I asked.
    “Something big is about to happen,” he said without looking at me. “I can feel it.”
    I didn’t reply. Instead I just stared out into the distance. There was a definite strange air around today. I don’t know if it was because of everything that had happened over the last couple of days or if it was something else, something bigger. But this wasn’t really the time. There were other things that needed to be done.
    “Well we can worry about that later,” I said as I turned back towards the base. “If I’m needed I’ll be with Night-streamer.”
    The door to Night-streamer’s room was open. She was sitting on the bed looking at an old photo album. She had found an old pre-war camera and developing fluid a couple of years ago and she took it upon herself to photograph everything we did. She must have at least a few hundred photos knocking around. She glanced up as I entered and smiled.
    “How are you feeling?” I asked, sitting down on the end of the bed. She didn’t answer she just grimaced. “That good, huh.” I said looking down at the photo she was currently looking at. It was an old photo of her and Crash, I think I was the one who took it. It was taken when we all went out to the white area to meet up with a Renegade team from Zone 5. It must have been one of the few times we’d gone out and not had some Faceless come along and try to kill us. It was also one of the last times we’d truly had fun. Crash and Night-streamer where good friends and you didn’t need to be one of those drug doctors to figure out what was going through her head.
    “It wasn’t your fault, what happened to Crash” I said. “You were lucky to get out of there alive yourself.”
    She shook her head. She was starting to well up.
    “Come here,” I said holding my arms out. She lent her head on my shoulder. “There was nothing you could have done. Crash wouldn’t want you to be feeling bad over him; he’d want you to be strong. Ok.”
    She nodded and wiped her eyes with the back of her hand. Just then Sparrow stuck his head round the door.
    “Hey X, Arcade Angel is on the transmitter. She says it’s urgent.”
    Arcade Angel is one of the few Renegades from other Zones that we ever get transmissions from. Though getting transmissions from her is not usually good news. She usually has come up with a new and exciting way for us to get our brains fried.
    “Ok” I said as I got up. “Tell her I’ll be there in a minute.”
    Sparrow nodded and disappeared back into the corridor.
    “Are you going to be alright?” I asked Night-streamer.
    “Yeah, I should be.” She said. “Thank you.”
    “That’s ok,” I said as I walked towards the door. “That’s what friends are for.”

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