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war

Oltari
4Mins Each
5
ISSUES
Strange
Updated Jun 17, 2018
PG-13
0
610
0
Dystopia

In a distant future, the world's miniscule population of mutants is all sent to one place to live their lives "free from discrimination", in "safety" and in "harmony"; at least that's how it was advertised. This community is named "Strange".

The newcomer to Strange that everyone is talking about is the siren that goes by P-Kim. She's managed, within the first week of her arrival, to bring people together when all that Strange had seen was anarchy and bloodshed. But her pacifist approach and friendly smile won't get her anywhere when the dark intentions of Strange itself starts to bore its ugly head.

Sci-Fiction
Dystopia
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Strange

In a distant future, the world's miniscule population of mutants is all sent to one place to live their lives "free from discrimination", in "safety" and in "harmony"; at least that's how it was advertised. This community is named "Strange".

The newcomer to Strange that everyone is talking about is the siren that goes by P-Kim. She's managed, within the first week of her arrival, to bring people together when all that Strange had seen was anarchy and bloodshed. But her pacifist approach and friendly smile won't get her anywhere when the dark intentions of Strange itself starts to bore its ugly head.

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Rosy
1Min Each
0
ISSUES
Red Hood
Updated Jun 15, 2018
PG-13
0
4
0
Dystopia
Action

Jimena Rosa Sanchez is a fourteen-year old girl just trying to make it on her own, as the deceiving alter-ego Red Hood. When she encounters her assumed-dead foster family after a crash, she gets swept up in a whirlwind trying to help defeat the Blue Masks, an extremist group, who has taken control of most of the country. No one knows how it will end, but one thing is certain: things will never be the same.

Young Adult
Dystopia
Action
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Red Hood

Jimena Rosa Sanchez is a fourteen-year old girl just trying to make it on her own, as the deceiving alter-ego Red Hood. When she encounters her assumed-dead foster family after a crash, she gets swept up in a whirlwind trying to help defeat the Blue Masks, an extremist group, who has taken control of most of the country. No one knows how it will end, but one thing is certain: things will never be the same.

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Solo Work
Jochern
15Mins Each
11
ISSUES
Enderal I Lords and Mages
Updated Jun 15, 2018
PG-13
0
432
0
Fantasy
War

Selene Costayne wants to reclaim her family's old crown, now held by the Red Queen of House Silverstag.

Aleron interrupts his raiding to raise a female dragon pup as an elf with a vengeance seek out his family and the Silverstags try to maintain their hold on power.

In the north of the world hosts gather for war.

Fantasy
Fantasy
War
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Enderal I Lords and Mages

Selene Costayne wants to reclaim her family's old crown, now held by the Red Queen of House Silverstag.

Aleron interrupts his raiding to raise a female dragon pup as an elf with a vengeance seek out his family and the Silverstags try to maintain their hold on power.

In the north of the world hosts gather for war.

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Solo Work
TheGirlWhoseStillUnKnown
7Mins Each
32
ISSUES
Rein
Updated Jun 15, 2018
PG-13 Completed
13
3247
0
War
Friendship

It has been a century since the world experienced a war. After the last war, the world was left in a state of destruction that made recovery impossible. Almost-- if it aren't for the people who revealed that they have special abilities.

Year 2119, the war had started again. And Reins must run or fight for their lives.

Fantasy
War
Friendship
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Solo Work

Rein

It has been a century since the world experienced a war. After the last war, the world was left in a state of destruction that made recovery impossible. Almost-- if it aren't for the people who revealed that they have special abilities.

Year 2119, the war had started again. And Reins must run or fight for their lives.

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Solo Work
Zero Dantez
12Mins Each
25
ISSUES
The Midnight Series Vol: 1
Updated Jun 15, 2018
PG-13
75
1978
5
Action
Adventure

Follow the story of progression, starting with the current day war of the Tribe and Hive.  Holly, leader of the Tribe's daughter, survives the clan and must stop the reawakening Hive as they plot their return to Earth after losing the war thousands of years prior.  Many will be caught in the progression of the war, including those with their own selfish goals and those who had no intent.  How will it turn out for our planet?  How will it turn out for those drug into it?  Those caught in the middle?  Those with their own goals?

New Chapters available every Thursday!!

The full story won't be available here on Penana (for now) however it is available over on Amazon for both paperback and kindle purchase: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1520745443.You can also donate to my Patreon to gain full access by donating, more details there: https://www.patreon.com/ZeroDantez

Fantasy
Action
Adventure
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Solo Work

The Midnight Series Vol: 1

Follow the story of progression, starting with the current day war of the Tribe and Hive.  Holly, leader of the Tribe's daughter, survives the clan and must stop the reawakening Hive as they plot their return to Earth after losing the war thousands of years prior.  Many will be caught in the progression of the war, including those with their own selfish goals and those who had no intent.  How will it turn out for our planet?  How will it turn out for those drug into it?  Those caught in the middle?  Those with their own goals?

New Chapters available every Thursday!!

The full story won't be available here on Penana (for now) however it is available over on Amazon for both paperback and kindle purchase: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1520745443.You can also donate to my Patreon to gain full access by donating, more details there: https://www.patreon.com/ZeroDantez

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Solo Work
DabblePie
9Mins Each
6
ISSUES
A Place of Promise
Updated Apr 25, 2018
PG-13
6
521
3
Fantasy
Adventure

A world is nothing without sacrifice. Leaders sacrifice face and honor, people sacrifice money and power, and others sacrifice their lives to sustain the balance of their world. It takes only a moment of negligence to set an imbalance to a world, and sets a domino effect of perturbing consequences to lay destruction in its path.

It happens every year in Altair known as Amyths where the story of two lovers are commemorated for being reunited by a bridge across the milky way. However, every two years a single person goes missing, and every two years a new tale is spun.

Romance
Fantasy
Adventure
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Solo Work

A Place of Promise

A world is nothing without sacrifice. Leaders sacrifice face and honor, people sacrifice money and power, and others sacrifice their lives to sustain the balance of their world. It takes only a moment of negligence to set an imbalance to a world, and sets a domino effect of perturbing consequences to lay destruction in its path.

It happens every year in Altair known as Amyths where the story of two lovers are commemorated for being reunited by a bridge across the milky way. However, every two years a single person goes missing, and every two years a new tale is spun.

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Solo Work
BrotherAlameen
1Min Each
1
ISSUE
World Wide Economical Collapse
Updated Apr 22, 2018
PG Completed
0
86
0
War

Have you ever thought what Donald Trump meant when he said, "We are living in a bubble." Well, this story is about to explain every content about that area from different parts of our community, decided to put this in war category since I believe that Financial War would commence worldwide soon. Stay tuned as I keep you updated.

Article
War
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Solo Work

World Wide Economical Collapse

Have you ever thought what Donald Trump meant when he said, "We are living in a bubble." Well, this story is about to explain every content about that area from different parts of our community, decided to put this in war category since I believe that Financial War would commence worldwide soon. Stay tuned as I keep you updated.

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Solo Work
Nicole Armas
10Mins Each
4
ISSUES
On Wings of a Dragon
Updated Apr 11, 2018
PG-13 On Break
1
916
5
Action
Adventure

For well over two hundred years, the four Dragonrider Guilds have defended Bourassa against all that had threatened the security of her people. When one of the Guilds is betrayed and destroyed, this high honour is tarnished. Soon Alexander Enceladus and the remaining Dragonriders are thrust into an uncertain battle for the survival of their people; a battle they could not have foreseen.

A board for this story has been made on Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/Voltara/on-wings-of-a-dragon/

Fantasy
Action
Adventure
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On Wings of a Dragon

For well over two hundred years, the four Dragonrider Guilds have defended Bourassa against all that had threatened the security of her people. When one of the Guilds is betrayed and destroyed, this high honour is tarnished. Soon Alexander Enceladus and the remaining Dragonriders are thrust into an uncertain battle for the survival of their people; a battle they could not have foreseen.

A board for this story has been made on Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/Voltara/on-wings-of-a-dragon/

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Solo Work
crazy normal 1864
3Mins Each
3
ISSUES
Tattoos
Updated Apr 6, 2018
PG-13
1
241
0
Romance

this story is about a parallel universe, Lovers, Enemies, Lovers that are enemies and a bit of fantasy stuff jumbled in. in this universe two Great countries are at war

Fantasy
Romance
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Tattoos

this story is about a parallel universe, Lovers, Enemies, Lovers that are enemies and a bit of fantasy stuff jumbled in. in this universe two Great countries are at war

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Solo Work
lesbihonest
6Mins Each
1
ISSUE
The Spoils Of War
Updated Mar 28, 2018
R
0
70
0
Romance
Dark

This is a roleplay transcript from the app Rolemance.

this is a dark fantasy roleplay with some pretty heavy themes and some smut, I guess a trigger warning would be appropriate. if you see any errors, please suggest edits if you see errors, this was transcribed using OCR so errors are inevitable.

Fantasy
Romance
Dark
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Solo Work

The Spoils Of War

This is a roleplay transcript from the app Rolemance.

this is a dark fantasy roleplay with some pretty heavy themes and some smut, I guess a trigger warning would be appropriate. if you see any errors, please suggest edits if you see errors, this was transcribed using OCR so errors are inevitable.

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Solo Work
DylanHenEurepa
17Mins Each
20
ISSUES
The Underdogs
Updated Mar 20, 2018
R
17
314
0
Action
War

Hey guys, This is a story I partially wrote as a kid when I was borderline illiterate. I always had the ideas and creativity to write, but I didn't have the skills. My friends have helped me come along way but I still have a lot to learn. I love feedback even if it points out weaknesses.

also just a note, the names of the characters may seem ridiculous, but let me explain. This story is inspired by many real life events however unrealistic it may seem. the setting and what not are totally false, but many of the characters are real people and a lot of the conversations, personal struggles, and fights, actually occurred.

Its a war story that takes place shortly after WW2, North America was almost wiped out in a coordinated mass attack that no one saw coming. The attack was defeated, just barely, and USA and Canada were forced to reissue conscription, but since there were so many losses. The minimum age was reduced to the point were 13 year old kids are on the front lines. Nothing big was expected of these kids, however, this story follows a group of kids that not only proved themselves, but gave the Allied forces a fighting chance.

this story has a lot of sarcasm and humor in it, but it is in general a very serious and develops into a dark, sad story. All thoughts are welcome :)

Fantasy
Action
War
Read More
3 Collaboration Spaces Available

The Underdogs

Hey guys, This is a story I partially wrote as a kid when I was borderline illiterate. I always had the ideas and creativity to write, but I didn't have the skills. My friends have helped me come along way but I still have a lot to learn. I love feedback even if it points out weaknesses.

also just a note, the names of the characters may seem ridiculous, but let me explain. This story is inspired by many real life events however unrealistic it may seem. the setting and what not are totally false, but many of the characters are real people and a lot of the conversations, personal struggles, and fights, actually occurred.

Its a war story that takes place shortly after WW2, North America was almost wiped out in a coordinated mass attack that no one saw coming. The attack was defeated, just barely, and USA and Canada were forced to reissue conscription, but since there were so many losses. The minimum age was reduced to the point were 13 year old kids are on the front lines. Nothing big was expected of these kids, however, this story follows a group of kids that not only proved themselves, but gave the Allied forces a fighting chance.

this story has a lot of sarcasm and humor in it, but it is in general a very serious and develops into a dark, sad story. All thoughts are welcome :)

Read More
3 Collaboration Spaces Available
Elcid
1Min Each
0
ISSUES
LEI TAI
Updated Mar 4, 2018
R
0
51
0
Dark
Fantasy

Synopsis

Felix Sobek is from an illustrious martial arts family and after spending five years in prison, his dream is to be the next champion of the Lei Tai. Remembering a promise, he had made to his mother when she was still alive. But with the rise of the Separatists, a group that is against the Union of Nations, Felix's dreams might be in peril. As he tries to focus on winning the Lei Tai and achieving something for once in his life.

Chapter One-The Separatist

Once upon a time, long before the birth of the universe, in the state of nothingness was wuji, which gave birth to taijitu, the two opposites that complemented each other, yin and yang. From these two arose the five elemental phases. Metal, water, wood, fire and earth and from the five, the myriads of things that make up the expansive universe.

These observations were made from the dawn of civilisation, by Daoist sages, who were hermits meditating in the high mountains, in an area known as the Dragon’s Lair. Where it is believed dragons once resided (thus the name). The Daoist sages, observing nature made many discoveries.

They created meditative exercises, that increased longevity, amongst many other things. Their knowledge on the inner workings of nature also helped them create martial methods, all in the objective to adapt and survive all the changes that nature brought with it. They summed up their knowledge calling it the Dao, meaning the way.

Soon, their knowledge spread, reaching the rest of mankind. Knowledge that was supposed to be used to maintain or restore balance in oneself and aid in living in harmony with one’s surroundings. Nonetheless, this knowledge was used for self-gain by some, leading to war and from this disease, came it’s many symptoms.

The world was engulfed in chaos, fathers and sons fought; brothers murdered brothers; for hundreds of years the world experienced this carnage. Moments of fragile peace were always broken by sporadic skirmishes amongst nations leading to calamity.

It was a young man, of a fiery nature, taught in the ancient traditions of the Water School of Daoism in the mountains of the Dragon’s Lair. That brought peace to the world; his name was Fei Yue; he had a violent temper and was unbearable as a child. His mother, a single mom had him sent away as a last resort, to douse his flaming temper, once he was thirteen years of age.

He was sent to the Water School, where his strict teachers managed to extinguish these flames and bring balance to his heart. Within three years, the young Fei had finally find some form of inner peace. He was then taught all the secrets of the Water School. Training night and day, till he could not sweat no more. It was finally on the tenth year, since his training had begun that he had mastered the hermits’ teachings.

Given the very secretive nature of the Water School, compared to the other schools of thought in the area, the young Fei now at that time a twenty-six-year-old man, was their only disciple. Having passed all their trials, he was made a master of the Water School. It was now time for him to return to his mother. However, the Daoist hermits on the day of recognising his mastery in their sciences and arts, told him that with the knowledge he now possessed it was his responsibility to cure the world and restore balance. Since he was not going to join them in living as a hermit. His contact with the outside world meant that he had to heal it. Fei honourably yielded to their demands.

Upon his return to his village, horror struck him; the village was laid to waste and everything that moved had lost their breaths to a violent death. A wasteland composed of decapitated heads and the corpses of people, their pets and livestock. Amongst the grim images was the mutilated body of his mother.

Head down and aimlessly strolling amongst what was left of the massacre with tears starting to streak down his cheeks. He spotted a short sword left by the murderers. Grabbing it, he firmly held it by the hilt as he sighed.

Gazing around him, an anger long lost and now found, erupted and with brewing thoughts of revenge, he returned to the mountains.

The hermits from the Water School received a sobbing Fei, broken down and crawling on the floor holding the short sword on the other hand. Trickling tears and gasps of helplessness described him at that time. Days went by and Fei had calmed down and one day, after having finished a session of meditation, he approached the hermits, with the short sword he had brought from his village. There were only three sages in the Water School.

‘We here at the school, have abilities that could have stopped what happened,’ these were the first words spoken by Fei ever since his return. The Daoist blankly stared at him, Fei himself also looked detached. ‘I know the teachings can be interpreted to teach one not to get involved in worldly affairs,’ Fei paused and then continued, ‘Regardless, the tragedy that has occurred could have been stopped, I blame myself. But I look at you lot!’ his voice now rising in tone, ‘calling yourselves servants of the Water School, when my village was in flames where was your WATER! I will save this world. But most important of all…I will also rid it of weakness and indecision.’ By this time, he was pointing the short sword at the sages.

‘You have already made your decision,’ one of them said. ‘You will save the world, for that we have no regrets for the full knowledge we have transmitted to you,’ the other added. ‘This is our end, and your beginning, although you will succeed in many battles that await you. Today is one war you have lost,’ the third one concluded. ‘Cowards!’ snarled Fei, as he moved towards them like a swooping falcon with precision, cutting them down using techniques he was taught but most importantly he had mastered. He burned their bodies after the massacre, and now he was the sole lineage holder of the Water School, a powerful school of Daoism. Using his knowledge, Fei raised an army and started conquering parts of the world, marching through land and sailing by sea. Peace was brought to his conquered subjects and despite having become a king due to his conquests, Fei was simply known as General Fei.

His ambition was to have the whole world under his rule, having brought peace and order in his kingdom, Fei set out to build an empire. His small kingdom soon had other dominions under its rule as kingdoms fell and he became an emperor becoming more powerful. So, did his fear that he would lose it all. A looming paranoia grew within him, with this began his purge and tyranny.

Subjects, lieutenants anyone he suspected to being against him, he killed. The more he killed the more the fears he felt grew. It was then that his eyes were set on the Dragons' Lair. Daoist sages still dwelled there, their knowledge he thought would stop his plans. At first, he brushed the thought of getting rid of them away. But it was during one of his campaigns in the Southern regions of the world, that he acted on those thoughts. Where he struggled to conquer the small principality of Sud. A small city state that was the home to the Loham Temple, where Buddhist adherents had fused their ways with Daoism, a synchronisation known as Chan Buddhism.

Sud was the home of the holy and the bravest of warriors; the warrior monks from the temple had shared their knowledge with the populace and its ruler, a lineage holder himself of Loham pugilism and all its other arts or sciences. The Sud ruler was more than a sore thorn in General Fei's passage. Unlike Fei, he was a sturdy short man, black skinned with a thick black beard and large black eye brows that stuck out like flames. Prince Rey Sud was his name, a mighty warrior known for his hidden temper and conspicuous kindness. He had halted Fei’s advance into the Southern lands (the world's only resistance to General Fei’s ambitions of world conquest).

Prince Rey Sud managed to form an alliance with all the nations of the Southern regions and with time began to push Fei's forces back. His end however came under the hands of Yu Guan, who was known as General Red Crow. He was a faithful lieutenant of Fei and one of his greatest students.

With Sud captured, Fei ordered the murder of all of Prince Rey Sud's sons. One managed to escape through the aid of loyalists and since the alliance was still intact, they held what remained of the South. While Prince Rey Sud’s last son, Dos Sud made his way to the Dragons’ Lair.

There he joined the school of fire. This school was the opposite to the school of water in that it began its basic teachings with movements and ended it with stillness. The school of water did the opposite. Both however, came to the same result and Dos Sud being the only one out of all of Prince Rey Sud’s sons to have been trained in the ways of the Loham Temple, quickly grasped the concepts he was taught by the Daoist hermits.

Fei’s spies finally had managed to gather information on Dos Sud’s whereabouts and once the news passed the ears of Fei, he was furious. It was the last straw, not only was he going to kill Dos Sud, he planned also ridding the Dragons’ Lair of any Daoist hermits. His enemies’ plans were obvious (Dos Sud was to learn from the fire school to stop Fei). Nevertheless, by the time Fei himself entered the mountains slaughtering the Daoist hermits. The news had reached him too late, years had already passed, a good ten years. The Southern lands still resisted and the alliance although now weaker, it still held ground. Worse of all, he began to experience insubordination from his own troops, who were tired, and the long wars cost him economically.

Dos Sud was back in the Southern lands, and strengthened what was left of the alliance, winning various battles, he regained what was lost, including Sud. Where he was crowned Prince the following day after its liberation.

Confused and disoriented from the tormenting fear he felt, one evening Fei resorted to the finest wines he could find from his imperial cellar, during an imperial banquet. It was then that his end came, seeing the degradation of his master become more visible, General Red Crow had enough as he glared at Fei (who was drunk beyond consciousness and thoughtlessly swinging his sword). Seizing the moment, General Red Crow drew out his sword, ‘Your lordship this madness! Comes to an end tonight!’ he said sternly as he marched towards Fei. Fei beamed at his disciple chuckling as General Red Crow got closer, ‘Even in my drunkenness, your no match for me.’ Once he spoke those words Fei wasted no time and swung his sword at General Red Crow who dodged the blow. He was taken aback, feeling the power behind the blow; Fei was just toying with him. The confidence the general felt earlier quickly faded and astonished he awaited his death. Fei was now screaming, going frantic and saying words that could not be comprehended and with one wild swing heading for General Red Crow, he tripped losing his balance as he fell. Somehow, he ended having his own sword pierce his body.

His blood poured out and there in a sudden flash he remembered the words of one of his masters, ‘This is our end, and your beginning, although you will succeed in many battles that await you. Today is one war you have lost.’Fei then realised too late that he had forgotten the most basic of the teachings, inner peace. His worst enemy, had been himself the whole time; the fear that he felt had given birth to his undoing. A sharp swing beheaded him, the cut coming from General Red Crow as he stood from the top, gazing at Fei’s head, which had rolled to the side with its eyes wide open and the tongue rolled out.

The days that came after had the Fei Empire in a civil war, General Red Crow controlled parts of the empire and fought for what was left with the other generals. The alliance in the South was now known as the Sud Empire, with Dos Sud as emperor. There, there was peace and the decay of the Fei empire brought peace around the world.

Within the centuries that came by, to avoid losing many lives and instead of having nations have their troops engage one another in battle. Nations had their best champions fight each other, in one on one combat to the death on a raised platform, this way of conducting diplomatic disputes was to be known as the Lei Tai.

Then the Union of Nations was formed, and this global institution was the only one to have armed forces, known as the Union Guards. The Union Guards kept the global peace and the world was divided into 8 regions. The Northern Republics, the Nordic East, the Nordic West, the United West, Eastland, the Sud Republic, the East-South Union and the Sud-West Republics. The Union of Nations, was run by the council of the eight permanent elders, each elder coming from the eight different regions. Their focus was in keeping world peace. In addition, there was the annual Lei Tai fighting tournament, to commemorate the world’s past.

Each region of the world sent their best fighters to the Lei Tai, and the chosen fighters went through qualification by first competing in their regions’ Sanshou competitions. The Sanshou was the name given to these qualification fights that also took place in a raised platform. The champions of these competitions were then sent to compete in the Lei Tai.

Years into the future and modern day, in Main Central (Wobbleton City’s high maximum-security prison) and isolated from the rest of the prison population, was a twenty-three-year-old man. His legs were chained and so where his hands, this did not stop him from training. With most of his weight on his back-right leg, he stepped slightly with his left foot and punched out simultaneously with his right foot following; landing the same time as whichever fist was in front. The air was displaced like a gust of wind, with each punch as he stepped in a straight line, back and forth in his cell. His blue prison uniform’s sleeves were rolled up, with sweat rolling down his black skin on both of his tattoos. Each one slightly below the shoulders of both arms, the tattoos being trigrams, the one on the right had two straight unbroken lines with one broken line split in two in between them. The tattoo on the left arm was the opposite of the latter. The one symbolised fire and the one on the left water. Daoist in nature, the tattoos were a representation of the union between fire and water.

This twenty-three-year-old man was Felix Sobek, jailed for manslaughter, he had been imprisoned since the age of sixteen. First to Wobbleton City’s Juvenile Centre and then once he reached the age of eighteen, to Main Central. A prison housing the most dangerous criminals of the Sud-Republic.

A small spherical opening appeared on the cell door, with the gaze of one of the prison guards, ‘It’s time,’ he said as he opened the cell door. It was time for Felix to take his last chi kung class (breathing exercises for health of a meditative nature, which he taught the prisoners). Their where also martial methods of chi kung, used by martial artists.

That day was Felix Sobek’s last day in prison, he was to be freed in the next few hours. After the class, he had the whole prison courtyard to himself. This time unchained, he strolled towards a boulder and the guards watched still flabbergasted by what was about to take place. Felix first began to slam his hands against the boulder looking calm and relaxed. It was then followed by a series of punches. His hands were too conditioned to show any signs of damage and the boulder had indentations from years of abuse, by the hands of Felix.

Another prisoner stepped in the courtyard it was his time as well, a felon convicted for life and known to have killed five hundred people through deadly duels. He had grey hair, a flat snake like nose and wolf like small yellow eyes, with epicanthic folds. His skin was like milk with a tinge of coffee and his name was Silver Serpent. He was an old man but with an upright posture of an adolescent with lean muscles and barely an ounce of fat.

Belonging to an ancient clan believed to be extinct, Silver was thought to be the only one left, he was a lineage holder of the ancient martial art, Serpent Style. It was created by his clan known as the Slang Nyoka; one of his ancestors had transmitted bits of it to the Loham Monks who then formulated their own style, calling it the Loham Snake.

‘Hi Shirfu,’ said Felix as he saluted Silver using the yin yang gesture (his left hand was open with the fingers pointed straight and on top of his right hand, which was closed into a fist). Chuckling, Silver replied with the less martial version of the gesture, (his left hand on top, wrapped on his right hand which was held as a fist). ‘I am not your Shirfu, boy,’ he said as he pulled out a vial from one of his pockets, which contained some red-brownish liquid and upon seeing the vial, a smile covered Felix’s face. ‘Here,’ Silver handed the vial to Felix, who took it and quickly replied with, ‘Thanks.’ ‘Anytime boy, you like family, do not forget to tell your uncle I send him my greetings,’ began Silver and he continued, ‘the dit da jow should help you heal after the bruising session you just had boy. Delivering before you bother me.’ ‘You make the best dit da jow Silver, really…thank you,’ said Felix as he sprayed some of the liquid from the vial on both his hands and massaged them. It had an earth like scent with a hint of alcohol. The dit da jow was a liniment used by martial artists to aid in healing, after the gruelling conditioning of their limbs. ‘One more thing before I leave…just one technique,’ said Felix. ‘HA!’ bellowed Silver, ‘Your family’s Harmonious Fist is good enough,’ he concluded.

Waiting out of Main Central’s main gate, Felix looked up at the clear skies and gazed directly at the sun. He did not mind its rays blinding him one bit. He closed his eyes, as he felt an exhilarating sensation rush throughout his body. And he screamed out loud in joy with both hands in the air, he was free.

After ten minutes of waiting outside, he suddenly heard the loud smooth roar of a car engine from a distance. The car was then within sight, red and fancy; it slowly slowed down in front of him. Both of its suicide doors smoothly flung open. And out of the driving seat stepped out a tall bald black man with a skilfully trimmed full beard, shorter than the thick trimmed beard Felix had across his face. The man was neatly dressed in a black suit with a crimson neck tie that had black polka dots. While his feet were adorned with polished maroon shoes. Tightening his tie as he beamed at Felix, it was Mr Carl Sobek, his father.

He was the last person Felix expected to pick him up. ‘Where is Uncle Fred?’ asked Felix. ‘Wow,’ frowned his father at the question. ‘How about you greet me first, son!’ he said. ‘Sorry, how have you been?’ asked Felix. ‘Great!’ laughing, Carl approached his son; once he was close, he grabbed his son by the shoulders as Felix gazed up at him. Beaming back at Felix, Carl said with a teasing tone in his voice, ‘Hope they did not turn you into a bitch up in there.’ Shrugging him off, Felix replied nonchalantly, ‘Yea whatever…let’s get out of this hell hole,’ and then he headed for the car.

The engine roared as they drove off, and the moment of silence inside the car was broken by Carl as he said, ‘Look you and I haven’t seen eye to eye and we probably still would not, however, you will be staying with me. I may have not been the greatest of fathers even when your mom was alive, but I did and do my best. By the way, heard you studied while inside,’ Carl glanced at his son and back at the road as he changed gears. ‘Yea, studied Biotechnology and got my honours last year,’ answered Felix. ‘That is very good well-done son, your uncle mentioned it. Just did not know what exactly it was that you studied,’ said Carl. ‘You will be looking for a job?’ he asked. ‘Eddy has managed to get me a job at Gaia Corp,’ answered Felix.

Eddy Sobek was Felix’s cousin, they both were the same age with Felix being older by a few months. Eddy was a young executive working at Gaia Corp, unlike Felix, Eddy had never seen a prison cell and nor had his adolescences been as troubling.

Silence had fallen again in the car. Carl took a left turn and drove up on an incline as the road went up. Felix glanced around reminiscing younger days when he had crashed a few times riding down the sloping road with his bicycle. A smile painted itself on his face and then faded away. Driving up and then reaching level ground right in front stood big gates with dragon statues on each side, it was the Sobek residence.

Carl pressed a button from a miniature remote and the gates flung open. Even before heading to prison, Felix had left his house a year before after having a huge fight with his father. Now looking at the mansion, he saw nothing much had changed. Getting out of the car, they were received by a short and stocky old woman, in her black uniform. She was white and pale of complexion, with piercing sky-blue eyes and long grey hair; her name was Mrs Mary Witkins.

'Felix!' She exclaimed as she smiled. Felix smiled back as he opened his arms wide and hugged her, 'Been a looong long time,' said Felix. Mrs Wilkins reached up for Felix's cheeks and squeezed them and said, 'You nearly gave me a heart attack! With your nonsense!' Then she slapped him, frowning and slightly shocked Felix massaged his cheeks and Mrs Wilkins added with a grin, 'Now we equal,' turning to Mr Sobek she then said, 'Okay I am going to get back to work.'

Mrs Wilkins was more than just the house keeper, she was the de facto mother to Felix ever since his mother passed away when he was ten years old. She took care of him the best way she could. Now and then she would also be Mr Sobek's carer, he would seek her counsel when he was drunk past reason and she would tuck him in. Despite the years of service, Mrs Wilkins a widow was still a mystery, she was one of the first female Union Guards in her younger days and despite her age she was unusually strong.

Felix had gone to relax in his room, which he had not seen in eight years, everything seemed just like he had left it. Gazing around at the items in his room, brought in nostalgic emotions of his teenage years. They were posters of Lei Tai champions of old and one poster caught his eye, it was that of a bikini model. He smirked as he looked at it and then his eyes fell upon his computer. It clearly had outdated software, he walked towards it anyway and switched it on. Felix was slightly surprised that it still worked. His computer looked dustless, first thing that came to mind was Mrs Wilkins, she had cleaned up his room.

Opening a browser to browse the internet, he decided to take a quick peek at his social network. Felix went into the popular website known as Journal, it was not too popular when he went to prison. But had become the trend over the years with over a billion active users. The prison had facilities with computers for studying purposes, only in seldom occasions did he log in to his Journal account. Feeling a bit of excitement, he updated his status, writing in capital letters, “FREEDOM! I AM OUT!”, and then logged out. Looking at his bed, he plunged in and sighed as he looked at the ceiling.

What began as Felix slowly blinking, eventually led him to sleep. Lasting only a few minutes, it was suddenly broken. His bedroom door was suddenly opened; ‘Felix!’ Mrs Wilkins muttered briskly. Yawning as he looked at Mrs Wilkins and his body and head rose with his legs still rested on the bed. ‘Yes, Mrs Wilkins?’ he said. ‘Your parole officer is here, better not keep the officer waiting,’ after those words, Mrs Wilkins scurried away. He was a free man he thought, there was no need to be nervous. Brushing off the mild anxiety that he began to feel take presence, as he got out of his bed.

Realising Mrs Wilkins had not told him where the parole officer was in the mansion, Felix took his chances and went to the pool. There was his father in a more relaxed clothing; shorts and a golf shirt with flip-flops. Calmly puffing away as he smoked his cigar, he was seating on the poolside dining table near the fireplace that was used for barbecues. Next to him was a lady in a navy-blue suit and skirt. Felix felt an unexpected rush, as he glimpsed at the lady, scanning her up and down. His eyes falling on her gorgeous legs then sliding back up staring at her face. The lady looked young, about Felix’s age. She was fair skinned with blonde hair and dark blue eyes. Felix thought to himself to keep calm as he strolled towards his father doing his best to appear unperturbed.

When she looked back at Felix he nearly froze as he was now close and caught a glimpse of her full lips. 'Hi,' she said, as she got up; not waiting for Mr Sobek to introduce his son. She stretched her hand and Felix reacted only a few seconds later, shaking her hand as he kept looking straight into her eyes. His façade of a confidence was broken at that moment.

After he shook her hand, she introduced herself, 'I am Claudia Fern.' She was about Felix's height, as he noticed at that moment. As an attempt to control the situation, Mr Sobek who was still sitting down spoke, 'Yes Felix Mrs Wilkins probably told you, this is your parole officer.’ Felix quickly glanced at his father who grinned at him and then glanced at Claudia before winking back at Felix.

‘We have little time, we will need to discuss a few things, let’s sit,’ said Claudia, as she sat back on the chair with Felix following suit. Once they sat down, he then noticed on the table was a folder, which Claudia began browsing through.

‘Okay, look my job is too simply make sure you do not go back on the wrong track,’ began Claudia, ‘you were already briefed on me seeing you a few days before your release, now the crime you were convicted of was manslaughter, do not want to get into too much details. But simply it was a brawl between two people from opposing gangs. Has your former gang tried to make contact with you?’ Felix sighed feeling like he was knocked back into reality, his head rocked slightly back and forth and then he responded, ‘I was their leader I cut all ties and only spoke to a few of them, a year into my incarceration as I told one of the correctional service workers who visited before my release.’ ‘The last person you spoke to…’ before Claudia could finish the question, Felix intercepting her thoughts answered abruptly, ‘His dead.’

Claudia asked him a few more mundane questions, which were answered quickly. Her job was to monitor Felix for a year, while he was rehabilitating back into society. She was then to write a report, which was then to be presented by the correctional services to the court. Should everything go according to plan. Felix would be completely free without having a parole officer monitoring him. She was happy to have heard that Felix’s cousin had gotten Felix a job. Everything looked great for him, he had just to keep himself out of trouble. Nevertheless, there was one more document she had forgotten to bring that Felix needed to sign. Claudia frantically searched her hand bag and found nothing, exhaling deeply she then said, ‘I will have a look in my car, will be right back!’ Rushing away with her heels making sounds; Felix could not help but gaze at her posterior.

‘Your day looking good, that is one hell of a beauty,’ said Mr Sobek as he chuckled. Felix did not respond, nevertheless he agreed with his father, Claudia was a stunner. ‘Son if you land that, I will pay you a thousand Dinares,’ continued Mr Sobek this time leaning towards his son. ‘Whatever,’ said Felix. ‘No pressure,’ replied Mr Sobek, sniggering.

Claudia reappeared marching back towards them. ‘Look! Um we need to head back to my office, need to forward that document today with your signature,’ she said. ‘So, I must come with you…’ before Felix finished his sentence Mr Sobek snapped, ‘You heard the woman, you need to go with her! Hurry up, geez!’ Felix then got up and Mr Sobek added, ‘Excuse my son he is a tad bit slow.’ He then walked off with a subtle smirk on his face. Felix just shook his head in retaliation.

During the drive in a chill of silence, Felix began to feel anxious as his heart beat increased with pace. He hardened, feeling erect with every occasional glance at Claudia, who in that uncomfortable silence had noticed the glances and asked 'What?' mildly frowning. ‘Nothing,' muttered Felix. It dawned on him that the scarcity of contact with women had left him unbalanced (He felt timid and childlike in front of Claudia).

The drive was still dictated by silence, until Claudia finally arrived at the destination and parked her car. 'You feel safe around me?' Felix enquired. Claudia first smiled and then she answered, 'Well why not? Besides I can defend myself and I have studied your case and files,' sighing as she peered around for something and continued, 'your psychological profile does not make you a threat. Okay you wait here, I’m quickly going to go fetch the document, my office is not far.' Claudia hurried away after closing the door.

Felix wondered how Claudia was clearly comfortable dealing with ex-prisoners. Nevertheless, if she left him alone in the car there must be a guarantee there was a tracking device or something. Locking his eyes on Claudia as her frame got smaller, he saw her head towards a tall brown building with the flag of the Sud Republic.

It was a red flag with a bright yellow rectangle in its centre and in the rectangle, was an orange pentagon with a black trigram inside it, in the middle. The trigram was like Felix’s tattoo on his right arm, which symbolised fire.

They were in town and Felix could recognise some of the imagery around him. On the other side of the brown building was a big shopping mall, that was new to Felix.

Glancing down for a second, an explosion sent a shockwave that shattered the parked cars’ windscreens. Claudia’s car was fine, but Felix felt tremors shake him up inside as he peered around, trying to gather back his senses. He quickly got out of the car hearing screams of fear coming from different directions. He looked ahead to see if it was perhaps the correctional services’ building that blew up (the brown building Claudia had headed in); however, the explosion had come from the mall.

He crouched down and crawled back to the car as gun shots were being fired. He caught a glimpse of a small family, a father, mother and their toddler of a daughter whom the father carried as the daughter cried. ‘GET DOWN!’ bellowed Felix. The family managed to hide crouching down, next to a green car as the father did his best to calm down his daughter. The thought of if Claudia was alright surged around Felix’s mind, he felt helpless and like a coward.

Five minutes after the explosion helicopters appeared in the sky heading for the mall with it rising smoke. They were gunmen in the helicopters firing shots. It seemed like they were aiming their shots at suspects. Within the chaos, Felix saw Claudia sprinting his direction, she was barefoot to ease her mobility. Once she was close, Felix grabbed her and asked, ‘Are you alright?’ as he looked at her shocked face. ‘I am fine,’ she quickly answered regaining some of her composure. She slightly pushed him away and Felix backed off astonished, she seemed fine with the whole ordeal.

‘I do not know what is happening, but I need to get you back to your father in one piece,’ began Claudia, ‘seems like the police special forces have this under control,’ gazing at the mall, she turned back to Felix. ‘OK let’s go,’ she commanded. They hurried into the car and Claudia pressed her foot on the accelerator as they sped off.

On the road, Felix helped himself to increase the car radio’s volume and Claudia did not object. Both were silent and attentive to everything that came out of the radio news. ‘It seems there was an alleged terror attack happening as we speak, at the Westick Mall in town. The police’s special forces unit is on the scene. No arrests have been made this far and no deaths have been confirmed yet. No confirmation yet as to who is behind this, people at the scene have been filling social media with the news that it was an explosion inside one of the stores...’ After the radio news, the latest pop song was being played.

Claudia sighed and then said, ‘I will not be surprised if it’s a terror attack. Must be the Separatist Group, anyway I assume so.’ ‘Who are they?’ Felix quickly asked. ‘Some crazy terror organisation, anyway crazy bunch.’

Felix signed the document Claudia had gotten from her office after she dropped him off. Receiving a call on her cell phone she quickly left. Felix heard her speak to what seemed to be another man on the other line. She mentioned the name, ‘Richard,’ letting this Richard know she was fine. Felix wondered if this Richard was her boyfriend.

Wuxia
Dark
Fantasy
Read More
Solo Work

LEI TAI

Synopsis

Felix Sobek is from an illustrious martial arts family and after spending five years in prison, his dream is to be the next champion of the Lei Tai. Remembering a promise, he had made to his mother when she was still alive. But with the rise of the Separatists, a group that is against the Union of Nations, Felix's dreams might be in peril. As he tries to focus on winning the Lei Tai and achieving something for once in his life.

Chapter One-The Separatist

Once upon a time, long before the birth of the universe, in the state of nothingness was wuji, which gave birth to taijitu, the two opposites that complemented each other, yin and yang. From these two arose the five elemental phases. Metal, water, wood, fire and earth and from the five, the myriads of things that make up the expansive universe.

These observations were made from the dawn of civilisation, by Daoist sages, who were hermits meditating in the high mountains, in an area known as the Dragon’s Lair. Where it is believed dragons once resided (thus the name). The Daoist sages, observing nature made many discoveries.

They created meditative exercises, that increased longevity, amongst many other things. Their knowledge on the inner workings of nature also helped them create martial methods, all in the objective to adapt and survive all the changes that nature brought with it. They summed up their knowledge calling it the Dao, meaning the way.

Soon, their knowledge spread, reaching the rest of mankind. Knowledge that was supposed to be used to maintain or restore balance in oneself and aid in living in harmony with one’s surroundings. Nonetheless, this knowledge was used for self-gain by some, leading to war and from this disease, came it’s many symptoms.

The world was engulfed in chaos, fathers and sons fought; brothers murdered brothers; for hundreds of years the world experienced this carnage. Moments of fragile peace were always broken by sporadic skirmishes amongst nations leading to calamity.

It was a young man, of a fiery nature, taught in the ancient traditions of the Water School of Daoism in the mountains of the Dragon’s Lair. That brought peace to the world; his name was Fei Yue; he had a violent temper and was unbearable as a child. His mother, a single mom had him sent away as a last resort, to douse his flaming temper, once he was thirteen years of age.

He was sent to the Water School, where his strict teachers managed to extinguish these flames and bring balance to his heart. Within three years, the young Fei had finally find some form of inner peace. He was then taught all the secrets of the Water School. Training night and day, till he could not sweat no more. It was finally on the tenth year, since his training had begun that he had mastered the hermits’ teachings.

Given the very secretive nature of the Water School, compared to the other schools of thought in the area, the young Fei now at that time a twenty-six-year-old man, was their only disciple. Having passed all their trials, he was made a master of the Water School. It was now time for him to return to his mother. However, the Daoist hermits on the day of recognising his mastery in their sciences and arts, told him that with the knowledge he now possessed it was his responsibility to cure the world and restore balance. Since he was not going to join them in living as a hermit. His contact with the outside world meant that he had to heal it. Fei honourably yielded to their demands.

Upon his return to his village, horror struck him; the village was laid to waste and everything that moved had lost their breaths to a violent death. A wasteland composed of decapitated heads and the corpses of people, their pets and livestock. Amongst the grim images was the mutilated body of his mother.

Head down and aimlessly strolling amongst what was left of the massacre with tears starting to streak down his cheeks. He spotted a short sword left by the murderers. Grabbing it, he firmly held it by the hilt as he sighed.

Gazing around him, an anger long lost and now found, erupted and with brewing thoughts of revenge, he returned to the mountains.

The hermits from the Water School received a sobbing Fei, broken down and crawling on the floor holding the short sword on the other hand. Trickling tears and gasps of helplessness described him at that time. Days went by and Fei had calmed down and one day, after having finished a session of meditation, he approached the hermits, with the short sword he had brought from his village. There were only three sages in the Water School.

‘We here at the school, have abilities that could have stopped what happened,’ these were the first words spoken by Fei ever since his return. The Daoist blankly stared at him, Fei himself also looked detached. ‘I know the teachings can be interpreted to teach one not to get involved in worldly affairs,’ Fei paused and then continued, ‘Regardless, the tragedy that has occurred could have been stopped, I blame myself. But I look at you lot!’ his voice now rising in tone, ‘calling yourselves servants of the Water School, when my village was in flames where was your WATER! I will save this world. But most important of all…I will also rid it of weakness and indecision.’ By this time, he was pointing the short sword at the sages.

‘You have already made your decision,’ one of them said. ‘You will save the world, for that we have no regrets for the full knowledge we have transmitted to you,’ the other added. ‘This is our end, and your beginning, although you will succeed in many battles that await you. Today is one war you have lost,’ the third one concluded. ‘Cowards!’ snarled Fei, as he moved towards them like a swooping falcon with precision, cutting them down using techniques he was taught but most importantly he had mastered. He burned their bodies after the massacre, and now he was the sole lineage holder of the Water School, a powerful school of Daoism. Using his knowledge, Fei raised an army and started conquering parts of the world, marching through land and sailing by sea. Peace was brought to his conquered subjects and despite having become a king due to his conquests, Fei was simply known as General Fei.

His ambition was to have the whole world under his rule, having brought peace and order in his kingdom, Fei set out to build an empire. His small kingdom soon had other dominions under its rule as kingdoms fell and he became an emperor becoming more powerful. So, did his fear that he would lose it all. A looming paranoia grew within him, with this began his purge and tyranny.

Subjects, lieutenants anyone he suspected to being against him, he killed. The more he killed the more the fears he felt grew. It was then that his eyes were set on the Dragons' Lair. Daoist sages still dwelled there, their knowledge he thought would stop his plans. At first, he brushed the thought of getting rid of them away. But it was during one of his campaigns in the Southern regions of the world, that he acted on those thoughts. Where he struggled to conquer the small principality of Sud. A small city state that was the home to the Loham Temple, where Buddhist adherents had fused their ways with Daoism, a synchronisation known as Chan Buddhism.

Sud was the home of the holy and the bravest of warriors; the warrior monks from the temple had shared their knowledge with the populace and its ruler, a lineage holder himself of Loham pugilism and all its other arts or sciences. The Sud ruler was more than a sore thorn in General Fei's passage. Unlike Fei, he was a sturdy short man, black skinned with a thick black beard and large black eye brows that stuck out like flames. Prince Rey Sud was his name, a mighty warrior known for his hidden temper and conspicuous kindness. He had halted Fei’s advance into the Southern lands (the world's only resistance to General Fei’s ambitions of world conquest).

Prince Rey Sud managed to form an alliance with all the nations of the Southern regions and with time began to push Fei's forces back. His end however came under the hands of Yu Guan, who was known as General Red Crow. He was a faithful lieutenant of Fei and one of his greatest students.

With Sud captured, Fei ordered the murder of all of Prince Rey Sud's sons. One managed to escape through the aid of loyalists and since the alliance was still intact, they held what remained of the South. While Prince Rey Sud’s last son, Dos Sud made his way to the Dragons’ Lair.

There he joined the school of fire. This school was the opposite to the school of water in that it began its basic teachings with movements and ended it with stillness. The school of water did the opposite. Both however, came to the same result and Dos Sud being the only one out of all of Prince Rey Sud’s sons to have been trained in the ways of the Loham Temple, quickly grasped the concepts he was taught by the Daoist hermits.

Fei’s spies finally had managed to gather information on Dos Sud’s whereabouts and once the news passed the ears of Fei, he was furious. It was the last straw, not only was he going to kill Dos Sud, he planned also ridding the Dragons’ Lair of any Daoist hermits. His enemies’ plans were obvious (Dos Sud was to learn from the fire school to stop Fei). Nevertheless, by the time Fei himself entered the mountains slaughtering the Daoist hermits. The news had reached him too late, years had already passed, a good ten years. The Southern lands still resisted and the alliance although now weaker, it still held ground. Worse of all, he began to experience insubordination from his own troops, who were tired, and the long wars cost him economically.

Dos Sud was back in the Southern lands, and strengthened what was left of the alliance, winning various battles, he regained what was lost, including Sud. Where he was crowned Prince the following day after its liberation.

Confused and disoriented from the tormenting fear he felt, one evening Fei resorted to the finest wines he could find from his imperial cellar, during an imperial banquet. It was then that his end came, seeing the degradation of his master become more visible, General Red Crow had enough as he glared at Fei (who was drunk beyond consciousness and thoughtlessly swinging his sword). Seizing the moment, General Red Crow drew out his sword, ‘Your lordship this madness! Comes to an end tonight!’ he said sternly as he marched towards Fei. Fei beamed at his disciple chuckling as General Red Crow got closer, ‘Even in my drunkenness, your no match for me.’ Once he spoke those words Fei wasted no time and swung his sword at General Red Crow who dodged the blow. He was taken aback, feeling the power behind the blow; Fei was just toying with him. The confidence the general felt earlier quickly faded and astonished he awaited his death. Fei was now screaming, going frantic and saying words that could not be comprehended and with one wild swing heading for General Red Crow, he tripped losing his balance as he fell. Somehow, he ended having his own sword pierce his body.

His blood poured out and there in a sudden flash he remembered the words of one of his masters, ‘This is our end, and your beginning, although you will succeed in many battles that await you. Today is one war you have lost.’Fei then realised too late that he had forgotten the most basic of the teachings, inner peace. His worst enemy, had been himself the whole time; the fear that he felt had given birth to his undoing. A sharp swing beheaded him, the cut coming from General Red Crow as he stood from the top, gazing at Fei’s head, which had rolled to the side with its eyes wide open and the tongue rolled out.

The days that came after had the Fei Empire in a civil war, General Red Crow controlled parts of the empire and fought for what was left with the other generals. The alliance in the South was now known as the Sud Empire, with Dos Sud as emperor. There, there was peace and the decay of the Fei empire brought peace around the world.

Within the centuries that came by, to avoid losing many lives and instead of having nations have their troops engage one another in battle. Nations had their best champions fight each other, in one on one combat to the death on a raised platform, this way of conducting diplomatic disputes was to be known as the Lei Tai.

Then the Union of Nations was formed, and this global institution was the only one to have armed forces, known as the Union Guards. The Union Guards kept the global peace and the world was divided into 8 regions. The Northern Republics, the Nordic East, the Nordic West, the United West, Eastland, the Sud Republic, the East-South Union and the Sud-West Republics. The Union of Nations, was run by the council of the eight permanent elders, each elder coming from the eight different regions. Their focus was in keeping world peace. In addition, there was the annual Lei Tai fighting tournament, to commemorate the world’s past.

Each region of the world sent their best fighters to the Lei Tai, and the chosen fighters went through qualification by first competing in their regions’ Sanshou competitions. The Sanshou was the name given to these qualification fights that also took place in a raised platform. The champions of these competitions were then sent to compete in the Lei Tai.

Years into the future and modern day, in Main Central (Wobbleton City’s high maximum-security prison) and isolated from the rest of the prison population, was a twenty-three-year-old man. His legs were chained and so where his hands, this did not stop him from training. With most of his weight on his back-right leg, he stepped slightly with his left foot and punched out simultaneously with his right foot following; landing the same time as whichever fist was in front. The air was displaced like a gust of wind, with each punch as he stepped in a straight line, back and forth in his cell. His blue prison uniform’s sleeves were rolled up, with sweat rolling down his black skin on both of his tattoos. Each one slightly below the shoulders of both arms, the tattoos being trigrams, the one on the right had two straight unbroken lines with one broken line split in two in between them. The tattoo on the left arm was the opposite of the latter. The one symbolised fire and the one on the left water. Daoist in nature, the tattoos were a representation of the union between fire and water.

This twenty-three-year-old man was Felix Sobek, jailed for manslaughter, he had been imprisoned since the age of sixteen. First to Wobbleton City’s Juvenile Centre and then once he reached the age of eighteen, to Main Central. A prison housing the most dangerous criminals of the Sud-Republic.

A small spherical opening appeared on the cell door, with the gaze of one of the prison guards, ‘It’s time,’ he said as he opened the cell door. It was time for Felix to take his last chi kung class (breathing exercises for health of a meditative nature, which he taught the prisoners). Their where also martial methods of chi kung, used by martial artists.

That day was Felix Sobek’s last day in prison, he was to be freed in the next few hours. After the class, he had the whole prison courtyard to himself. This time unchained, he strolled towards a boulder and the guards watched still flabbergasted by what was about to take place. Felix first began to slam his hands against the boulder looking calm and relaxed. It was then followed by a series of punches. His hands were too conditioned to show any signs of damage and the boulder had indentations from years of abuse, by the hands of Felix.

Another prisoner stepped in the courtyard it was his time as well, a felon convicted for life and known to have killed five hundred people through deadly duels. He had grey hair, a flat snake like nose and wolf like small yellow eyes, with epicanthic folds. His skin was like milk with a tinge of coffee and his name was Silver Serpent. He was an old man but with an upright posture of an adolescent with lean muscles and barely an ounce of fat.

Belonging to an ancient clan believed to be extinct, Silver was thought to be the only one left, he was a lineage holder of the ancient martial art, Serpent Style. It was created by his clan known as the Slang Nyoka; one of his ancestors had transmitted bits of it to the Loham Monks who then formulated their own style, calling it the Loham Snake.

‘Hi Shirfu,’ said Felix as he saluted Silver using the yin yang gesture (his left hand was open with the fingers pointed straight and on top of his right hand, which was closed into a fist). Chuckling, Silver replied with the less martial version of the gesture, (his left hand on top, wrapped on his right hand which was held as a fist). ‘I am not your Shirfu, boy,’ he said as he pulled out a vial from one of his pockets, which contained some red-brownish liquid and upon seeing the vial, a smile covered Felix’s face. ‘Here,’ Silver handed the vial to Felix, who took it and quickly replied with, ‘Thanks.’ ‘Anytime boy, you like family, do not forget to tell your uncle I send him my greetings,’ began Silver and he continued, ‘the dit da jow should help you heal after the bruising session you just had boy. Delivering before you bother me.’ ‘You make the best dit da jow Silver, really…thank you,’ said Felix as he sprayed some of the liquid from the vial on both his hands and massaged them. It had an earth like scent with a hint of alcohol. The dit da jow was a liniment used by martial artists to aid in healing, after the gruelling conditioning of their limbs. ‘One more thing before I leave…just one technique,’ said Felix. ‘HA!’ bellowed Silver, ‘Your family’s Harmonious Fist is good enough,’ he concluded.

Waiting out of Main Central’s main gate, Felix looked up at the clear skies and gazed directly at the sun. He did not mind its rays blinding him one bit. He closed his eyes, as he felt an exhilarating sensation rush throughout his body. And he screamed out loud in joy with both hands in the air, he was free.

After ten minutes of waiting outside, he suddenly heard the loud smooth roar of a car engine from a distance. The car was then within sight, red and fancy; it slowly slowed down in front of him. Both of its suicide doors smoothly flung open. And out of the driving seat stepped out a tall bald black man with a skilfully trimmed full beard, shorter than the thick trimmed beard Felix had across his face. The man was neatly dressed in a black suit with a crimson neck tie that had black polka dots. While his feet were adorned with polished maroon shoes. Tightening his tie as he beamed at Felix, it was Mr Carl Sobek, his father.

He was the last person Felix expected to pick him up. ‘Where is Uncle Fred?’ asked Felix. ‘Wow,’ frowned his father at the question. ‘How about you greet me first, son!’ he said. ‘Sorry, how have you been?’ asked Felix. ‘Great!’ laughing, Carl approached his son; once he was close, he grabbed his son by the shoulders as Felix gazed up at him. Beaming back at Felix, Carl said with a teasing tone in his voice, ‘Hope they did not turn you into a bitch up in there.’ Shrugging him off, Felix replied nonchalantly, ‘Yea whatever…let’s get out of this hell hole,’ and then he headed for the car.

The engine roared as they drove off, and the moment of silence inside the car was broken by Carl as he said, ‘Look you and I haven’t seen eye to eye and we probably still would not, however, you will be staying with me. I may have not been the greatest of fathers even when your mom was alive, but I did and do my best. By the way, heard you studied while inside,’ Carl glanced at his son and back at the road as he changed gears. ‘Yea, studied Biotechnology and got my honours last year,’ answered Felix. ‘That is very good well-done son, your uncle mentioned it. Just did not know what exactly it was that you studied,’ said Carl. ‘You will be looking for a job?’ he asked. ‘Eddy has managed to get me a job at Gaia Corp,’ answered Felix.

Eddy Sobek was Felix’s cousin, they both were the same age with Felix being older by a few months. Eddy was a young executive working at Gaia Corp, unlike Felix, Eddy had never seen a prison cell and nor had his adolescences been as troubling.

Silence had fallen again in the car. Carl took a left turn and drove up on an incline as the road went up. Felix glanced around reminiscing younger days when he had crashed a few times riding down the sloping road with his bicycle. A smile painted itself on his face and then faded away. Driving up and then reaching level ground right in front stood big gates with dragon statues on each side, it was the Sobek residence.

Carl pressed a button from a miniature remote and the gates flung open. Even before heading to prison, Felix had left his house a year before after having a huge fight with his father. Now looking at the mansion, he saw nothing much had changed. Getting out of the car, they were received by a short and stocky old woman, in her black uniform. She was white and pale of complexion, with piercing sky-blue eyes and long grey hair; her name was Mrs Mary Witkins.

'Felix!' She exclaimed as she smiled. Felix smiled back as he opened his arms wide and hugged her, 'Been a looong long time,' said Felix. Mrs Wilkins reached up for Felix's cheeks and squeezed them and said, 'You nearly gave me a heart attack! With your nonsense!' Then she slapped him, frowning and slightly shocked Felix massaged his cheeks and Mrs Wilkins added with a grin, 'Now we equal,' turning to Mr Sobek she then said, 'Okay I am going to get back to work.'

Mrs Wilkins was more than just the house keeper, she was the de facto mother to Felix ever since his mother passed away when he was ten years old. She took care of him the best way she could. Now and then she would also be Mr Sobek's carer, he would seek her counsel when he was drunk past reason and she would tuck him in. Despite the years of service, Mrs Wilkins a widow was still a mystery, she was one of the first female Union Guards in her younger days and despite her age she was unusually strong.

Felix had gone to relax in his room, which he had not seen in eight years, everything seemed just like he had left it. Gazing around at the items in his room, brought in nostalgic emotions of his teenage years. They were posters of Lei Tai champions of old and one poster caught his eye, it was that of a bikini model. He smirked as he looked at it and then his eyes fell upon his computer. It clearly had outdated software, he walked towards it anyway and switched it on. Felix was slightly surprised that it still worked. His computer looked dustless, first thing that came to mind was Mrs Wilkins, she had cleaned up his room.

Opening a browser to browse the internet, he decided to take a quick peek at his social network. Felix went into the popular website known as Journal, it was not too popular when he went to prison. But had become the trend over the years with over a billion active users. The prison had facilities with computers for studying purposes, only in seldom occasions did he log in to his Journal account. Feeling a bit of excitement, he updated his status, writing in capital letters, “FREEDOM! I AM OUT!”, and then logged out. Looking at his bed, he plunged in and sighed as he looked at the ceiling.

What began as Felix slowly blinking, eventually led him to sleep. Lasting only a few minutes, it was suddenly broken. His bedroom door was suddenly opened; ‘Felix!’ Mrs Wilkins muttered briskly. Yawning as he looked at Mrs Wilkins and his body and head rose with his legs still rested on the bed. ‘Yes, Mrs Wilkins?’ he said. ‘Your parole officer is here, better not keep the officer waiting,’ after those words, Mrs Wilkins scurried away. He was a free man he thought, there was no need to be nervous. Brushing off the mild anxiety that he began to feel take presence, as he got out of his bed.

Realising Mrs Wilkins had not told him where the parole officer was in the mansion, Felix took his chances and went to the pool. There was his father in a more relaxed clothing; shorts and a golf shirt with flip-flops. Calmly puffing away as he smoked his cigar, he was seating on the poolside dining table near the fireplace that was used for barbecues. Next to him was a lady in a navy-blue suit and skirt. Felix felt an unexpected rush, as he glimpsed at the lady, scanning her up and down. His eyes falling on her gorgeous legs then sliding back up staring at her face. The lady looked young, about Felix’s age. She was fair skinned with blonde hair and dark blue eyes. Felix thought to himself to keep calm as he strolled towards his father doing his best to appear unperturbed.

When she looked back at Felix he nearly froze as he was now close and caught a glimpse of her full lips. 'Hi,' she said, as she got up; not waiting for Mr Sobek to introduce his son. She stretched her hand and Felix reacted only a few seconds later, shaking her hand as he kept looking straight into her eyes. His façade of a confidence was broken at that moment.

After he shook her hand, she introduced herself, 'I am Claudia Fern.' She was about Felix's height, as he noticed at that moment. As an attempt to control the situation, Mr Sobek who was still sitting down spoke, 'Yes Felix Mrs Wilkins probably told you, this is your parole officer.’ Felix quickly glanced at his father who grinned at him and then glanced at Claudia before winking back at Felix.

‘We have little time, we will need to discuss a few things, let’s sit,’ said Claudia, as she sat back on the chair with Felix following suit. Once they sat down, he then noticed on the table was a folder, which Claudia began browsing through.

‘Okay, look my job is too simply make sure you do not go back on the wrong track,’ began Claudia, ‘you were already briefed on me seeing you a few days before your release, now the crime you were convicted of was manslaughter, do not want to get into too much details. But simply it was a brawl between two people from opposing gangs. Has your former gang tried to make contact with you?’ Felix sighed feeling like he was knocked back into reality, his head rocked slightly back and forth and then he responded, ‘I was their leader I cut all ties and only spoke to a few of them, a year into my incarceration as I told one of the correctional service workers who visited before my release.’ ‘The last person you spoke to…’ before Claudia could finish the question, Felix intercepting her thoughts answered abruptly, ‘His dead.’

Claudia asked him a few more mundane questions, which were answered quickly. Her job was to monitor Felix for a year, while he was rehabilitating back into society. She was then to write a report, which was then to be presented by the correctional services to the court. Should everything go according to plan. Felix would be completely free without having a parole officer monitoring him. She was happy to have heard that Felix’s cousin had gotten Felix a job. Everything looked great for him, he had just to keep himself out of trouble. Nevertheless, there was one more document she had forgotten to bring that Felix needed to sign. Claudia frantically searched her hand bag and found nothing, exhaling deeply she then said, ‘I will have a look in my car, will be right back!’ Rushing away with her heels making sounds; Felix could not help but gaze at her posterior.

‘Your day looking good, that is one hell of a beauty,’ said Mr Sobek as he chuckled. Felix did not respond, nevertheless he agreed with his father, Claudia was a stunner. ‘Son if you land that, I will pay you a thousand Dinares,’ continued Mr Sobek this time leaning towards his son. ‘Whatever,’ said Felix. ‘No pressure,’ replied Mr Sobek, sniggering.

Claudia reappeared marching back towards them. ‘Look! Um we need to head back to my office, need to forward that document today with your signature,’ she said. ‘So, I must come with you…’ before Felix finished his sentence Mr Sobek snapped, ‘You heard the woman, you need to go with her! Hurry up, geez!’ Felix then got up and Mr Sobek added, ‘Excuse my son he is a tad bit slow.’ He then walked off with a subtle smirk on his face. Felix just shook his head in retaliation.

During the drive in a chill of silence, Felix began to feel anxious as his heart beat increased with pace. He hardened, feeling erect with every occasional glance at Claudia, who in that uncomfortable silence had noticed the glances and asked 'What?' mildly frowning. ‘Nothing,' muttered Felix. It dawned on him that the scarcity of contact with women had left him unbalanced (He felt timid and childlike in front of Claudia).

The drive was still dictated by silence, until Claudia finally arrived at the destination and parked her car. 'You feel safe around me?' Felix enquired. Claudia first smiled and then she answered, 'Well why not? Besides I can defend myself and I have studied your case and files,' sighing as she peered around for something and continued, 'your psychological profile does not make you a threat. Okay you wait here, I’m quickly going to go fetch the document, my office is not far.' Claudia hurried away after closing the door.

Felix wondered how Claudia was clearly comfortable dealing with ex-prisoners. Nevertheless, if she left him alone in the car there must be a guarantee there was a tracking device or something. Locking his eyes on Claudia as her frame got smaller, he saw her head towards a tall brown building with the flag of the Sud Republic.

It was a red flag with a bright yellow rectangle in its centre and in the rectangle, was an orange pentagon with a black trigram inside it, in the middle. The trigram was like Felix’s tattoo on his right arm, which symbolised fire.

They were in town and Felix could recognise some of the imagery around him. On the other side of the brown building was a big shopping mall, that was new to Felix.

Glancing down for a second, an explosion sent a shockwave that shattered the parked cars’ windscreens. Claudia’s car was fine, but Felix felt tremors shake him up inside as he peered around, trying to gather back his senses. He quickly got out of the car hearing screams of fear coming from different directions. He looked ahead to see if it was perhaps the correctional services’ building that blew up (the brown building Claudia had headed in); however, the explosion had come from the mall.

He crouched down and crawled back to the car as gun shots were being fired. He caught a glimpse of a small family, a father, mother and their toddler of a daughter whom the father carried as the daughter cried. ‘GET DOWN!’ bellowed Felix. The family managed to hide crouching down, next to a green car as the father did his best to calm down his daughter. The thought of if Claudia was alright surged around Felix’s mind, he felt helpless and like a coward.

Five minutes after the explosion helicopters appeared in the sky heading for the mall with it rising smoke. They were gunmen in the helicopters firing shots. It seemed like they were aiming their shots at suspects. Within the chaos, Felix saw Claudia sprinting his direction, she was barefoot to ease her mobility. Once she was close, Felix grabbed her and asked, ‘Are you alright?’ as he looked at her shocked face. ‘I am fine,’ she quickly answered regaining some of her composure. She slightly pushed him away and Felix backed off astonished, she seemed fine with the whole ordeal.

‘I do not know what is happening, but I need to get you back to your father in one piece,’ began Claudia, ‘seems like the police special forces have this under control,’ gazing at the mall, she turned back to Felix. ‘OK let’s go,’ she commanded. They hurried into the car and Claudia pressed her foot on the accelerator as they sped off.

On the road, Felix helped himself to increase the car radio’s volume and Claudia did not object. Both were silent and attentive to everything that came out of the radio news. ‘It seems there was an alleged terror attack happening as we speak, at the Westick Mall in town. The police’s special forces unit is on the scene. No arrests have been made this far and no deaths have been confirmed yet. No confirmation yet as to who is behind this, people at the scene have been filling social media with the news that it was an explosion inside one of the stores...’ After the radio news, the latest pop song was being played.

Claudia sighed and then said, ‘I will not be surprised if it’s a terror attack. Must be the Separatist Group, anyway I assume so.’ ‘Who are they?’ Felix quickly asked. ‘Some crazy terror organisation, anyway crazy bunch.’

Felix signed the document Claudia had gotten from her office after she dropped him off. Receiving a call on her cell phone she quickly left. Felix heard her speak to what seemed to be another man on the other line. She mentioned the name, ‘Richard,’ letting this Richard know she was fine. Felix wondered if this Richard was her boyfriend.

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