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The Phantom Knights - first chapter
Shastasnow | Published 82 days ago

The Phantom Knights

Rune: I cannot do it. No further shall I go. My crippled body can only put up with so much. With a shaky hand, I wipe the tears from my eyes. “Such a failure I am. What is the point of putting up with this embarrassment any further? My pride is far too precious to me and this pathetic excuse for walking shatters my hopes.” It is negative thinking but I really feel at a low point in my life at this very moment.

Jack: Watching Rune in such a weakened state is hard on me. All I want is for her pain and suffering to end. But she keeps beating up on herself with the slow recovery to walk again. She just breaks down and her spirit almost seems to shatter when she tries to progress.

“No! You did amazing. This was your best attempt thus far. I am so proud of you. We are indeed progressing! Please be nicer to yourself.”

Rune: Jack’s positivity just does not feel good right now. I know he is only trying to help me but it is just not what I am able to take in at the moment. Slowly I sit down into my wheelchair prison. “I feel trapped Jack. I am just not in a good mood right now. This is out of our control, but I do genuinely want to get better. I really do. Just right now that is all that I am willing to do. Though honestly, I am not happy with how slow the progress is, it is beyond frustrating for me.” A hero of my caliber should not have ended up in this situation in the first place. What a fool I was to think I could take on such a vile woman on my own. No, she is a monster and I was far too reckless. If only I switched with Jack. All that goes through my mind is if only. I slap my palms against the armrests of my chair in frustration. It would be best for me to stop thinking such negative thoughts, it is no wonder why my recovery is taking so much time. I am stuck in the past.

Jack: “Rune, I shall not leave your side until you are well again. Is there anything I can do in order to ease your mind”? I grab a warm washcloth and I dab her pale face gently with it then gently I brush her sand-colored hair. Helping her helps me feel better as I feel responsible for her being in this condition. If only I switched places with her, she would not have been in this chair. I was just far too slow.

Rune: Jack has no choice to share bodies with me. We were born together but I mainly controlled the body. We only switch places because Jack has a unique way of taking in damage. Normally I am the fighter and he is my back up when we are on hero missions. This time just did not go as smoothly. I am not mad a Jack, because it was not his fault. It was not his idea to take on the phantom knight. It was all mine. Unfortunately, when we are in battle he is forced to take on his ghostly form. He says he does not mind it but whenever I take on that form, I feel so alone. It feels like there is no way I can help Jack. This means that Jack has taken the ghost form so much that he is almost irrelevant in the social world. Sometimes I let him take the wheel but it does feel awkward when he dates women as I prefer men. However, I dare not to judge the girls he meets as they are normally very nice and not to mention gorgeous. “Jack, I love you. You have been such a great friend to me. You don’t need to do anything more. Having you in my life is such a gift.”

Jack: I stroke Rune’s face and she gives me a saddened smile. Even in my ghostly form, I can still interact with the world and with others, the only problem is that it uses my energy quite a bit and I cannot make myself visible to others. Only Rune can see me and from that point of view, I know it is not all that clear. Very much like looking at a faint outline. Very ghost-like. It sometimes has me wondering if I am actually alive. Shaking out of the dark thought I try to change topics.

“Okay, Rune, why don’t we go outside for a bit before we have to go and do paperwork at the stuffy office.” She nods her head and I use my energy to push her outside. The air is great and the wind is soft. The sun is out and I can hear the birds chirping. The smell of Jasmine is in the air. “It is a gorgeous day out.”

“Ha-ha! Ha-ha!”

I hear the laughing and it takes me a bit to pinpoint the location. A feeling of anger mixed with sickening nausea fills my being. Standing perfectly perched onto of a flagpole is none other than the menacing undead warrior,  Phantom Slash. The monster that put Rune in the wheelchair. When I look at Rune I see the fear in her eyes much to my surprise. How could Rune be scared? She is never scared of anything. The Phantom Slash is a fearsome foe but to see Rune freeze like this is beyond strange to me. The accident itself must have been harder on her than she thought. Phantom Slash is just an unwanted guest. Another emotion I see in Rune’s eyes is anger. That one is understandable.

Phantom Slash: “Oh what pure pleasure I feel from this rare interaction. These seconds of power I have over you Rune. It is pure pleasure to know there is nothing you can do to stop me.” I lick my freezing lips and I pull out my sword. “My orders are to put you out our your misery my dear.”

Jack: Crap. I use my energy to roll Rune back inside. “We definitely cannot fight her. This is bad. This is defiantly bad. I will get the phone.” Rune shakes her head and she looks terrified.

Rune: It takes quite a bit to shake my head. “No, it is too late. We need to switch places, Jack! Now!”

Jack: “No. You cannot do that. We cannot risk such a switch. You, you could disappear completely!”

Rune: I wipe my eyes and with all that I can muster I stand up onto my trembling legs and I say my spell. Jack reluctantly says his. “This is because I love you, Jack. I want the best for you and I want you to keep living. Have the life you want and not the life I want.” The pain is immense but the change is completed. As Jack takes my form I feel my body disappearing and it feels like a million tiny paper cuts. “Oh my gosh! This really hurts!”

Jack: I am in the physical world now and I am solid again, but it is not worth it. Seeing Rune in such pain, it is not worth it. “Good gosh Rune! Rune! Stay with me!” I try to hold her but I can no longer touch her or hold her. All I can do is watch as she is shredded to bits by the spell. It is unreal to watch. She just did not have enough energy to make it through the complete change. “Rune!” I try to grab a hold of her with no success. Still, I am unable to touch her. She soon is no more and I cannot do anything to stop it. Nothing I can do. Before I know it Rune is gone. She is no more. She is gone completely. No more. I can feel my chest knot and my tears fall.

Phantom Slash: “Master, Rune is no more. The job is done, but Jack is still alive. Should I finish him off”?

As I wait for a response I watch as Jack cries to himself. He holds the little remains of Rune that soon become no more. It is truly an unfortunate moment for them and I’m sure this is going to a scar Jack. It would be best to stop him here now before he starts plotting revenge against The Phantom Knight, including myself. Finally received a reply from my master.

“Very good. Your mission is to be finished with. Leave Jack to rot and don’t worry about him. He is no threat without Rune.”

I nod my head at his command.

“Goodbye, Jack. My mission here is done. You are nothing and there is nothing you can do to stop me or The Phantom Knights.”

I narrow my eyes at the pained look in Jack’s eyes.

Jack: I feel angry towards the undead woman. Looking up at her bone-thin face I shiver. I feel a new emotion when looking at her and its something new to me. It is not just sadness and anger, but hate. I hater her with my very being. I get up off the ground and I ball my fists. “You shall pay for this, Slash. I will bring you so much pain and I will kill you”!

Phantom Slash: “That is impossible. When I joined The Phantom Knights, I gave my very life. I am already dead. I don’t feel such pathetic things as pain! You are far too irrational to ever think you’ll be a match for me or The Phantom Knight”! I grin down at him.

Jack: “To Hell with you all. I shall bring you pain and there are many ways to deliver such punishments you so rightfully deserve!”

Phantom Slash: I lick my cold lips once more. “Maybe in your dreams, you would see such a fantastical victory, but that is all you will get. Now I am done here so goodbye, Jack.” I brush my rose-colored hair back and make my way. Well, I did not even need to lift my blade. It would have been far more satisfying to cut Rune’s head off completely. Oh well.

Jack: She disappears in seconds. Balling my fists I feel as if I am not myself anymore. The old Jack is no more. Screw it all. Screw the law, they take much too long to get shit done. This is a matter I must take into my own hands. First, I need to mask my identity.  However, even if people saw me now, they probably would not recognize me. Rune took our body for most of the time. I brush my long black hair and I cut it quickly with the kitchen scissors. It is shorter now and less in the way. Rune liked to keep her hair long, so I put up with it despite being a guy.

I decide to change out of her feminine business attire and into a red and black superhero uniform. It is skintight but it works for now. Now I need to work on covering up this face. Hum, what do we have that can cover my face. I find some black paint and just cover my face with it. Good enough. I then find some materials to make a mask. It takes some crafting, paint, and time to make a mask that does not look like crap or is made of crap. It has to protect my face. Also, I work to build up my armor as well. Going down due to a sword or gun just does not sound all the pleasant. As I work I ignore all the knocks at the door and all the rings of the phone. It is not as if I know that many people. They are mostly for Rune anyway and they just make me sad.

“Rune are you home!”

Ignoring it I go back to crafting my mask. It needs to be unique and different.

“It is okay Rune, it is just good old Copper.”

I do know Copper and he knows me but he will just have to go away right now. After a bit, I hear his footsteps go into the distance. Thank goodness.

Copper: Rune’s depression must be getting worse. Now even Jack answered the door. Normally we walk to work together and make plans. Guess not today. I will have to check in after the work meeting.

Jack: Copper is one of our best friends. It is hard to ignore him like this, but I don’t have the strength to tell him right now. My mind is still processing. He may also try talking me out of what I am currently doing. He could even end up reporting me and that would not be good. That dork can be such a stickler for rules. Also, I think he had a crush on Rune and I know he would think much as she did. He would also probably say that I am being cliché. He would be right, as always. It is a common trope.

With a shake of my head, I let the words sink in and it makes me cringe. Why am I being stupid? This is exactly why Rune was in charge. This stunt could get me arrested or worse, killed. With a sigh and a rub of my temples, I put on my mask. “I feel silly.” I groan. I make my way out. It would be wise to go about this legally and not recklessly. It is my stupid actions that gout Rune injured in the first place. Thinking I could actually take Phantom Slash alone. Idiot. It would be best to report Rune’s death and the whole incident in general.

Phantom Slash: “Make your way forward and take out the two guards that will be on your left.”

I do as I am commanded. Turning left I surprise the two guards. “Halt! They fire their bullets at me but they simply pass through my shell of a body causing me no pain what so ever. Pathetic. I take my time to ready myself and the guards start to panic. They go to call back up or sound the alarm or something. It is a simple and quick maneuver to subdue the men. Oh, my bad. One of them was a woman. My fault to assume. If I am not ordered to kill, I don’t kill. Those two will just wake up confused and sore.

“Now open the door.”

I do if I am commanded. Got you the guards keycard to open the assigned door.

Phantom King: “Great work Slash. Now, we have a mission to complete.” The Phantom Knights are all here and assembled. We are unstoppable nothing can get in our way. I crack my knuckles and I make my way into the lab. “Everyone grab and the elixir any of your choosing. All the effects are random so there’s no need to fight over them!” I grab my cup along with the other knights. “Down the hatch. Drink it all even if it may taste like shit.” We all drink our cup. As soon as it is down I test out my new power. I threw up my hand and give it ago. Fire shootout my being and blast it at a brick wall. The bricks melt on impact with the fire. “Outstanding!” I would look to a mirror and then I notice my hair is on fire. “Crap, that’s new.” I touch the fire but it does not hurt. Interesting.

Morgan: The Phantom King’s new look is rather dashing. Licking my lips I strut over to him. I wore my hands with his flaming hair. “ Oh my, how handsome you look.”

Phantom King: “So, what are your new powers, Morgan”? She grins. “ Oh, I did not drink that when you suggested it may taste bad. I gave mine to our darling Slash over there. The one power I do have is enough to on top of you my dear, Phantom King.” We exchange looks for a bit. Her sly green eyes feel as if they can kill me a million times and it drives me wild for her. “You little devil, you have never been one to follow my orders. That is why you intrigue me, so very much. Will see who is at their game. She grins and kisses me gently on the lips. I amuse her and kiss her back much to her pleasure. “This is why you are my true prize. Nothing could match up to your beauty my dear. I truly loathe you for it you vile goddess.” She hums and licks my lower lip in a teasing manner. “Oh, you are beyond cruel to me my King. I dare you to cut me to bits, over and over…” I cut her off and we soon lose ourselves into each other.  

Copper: I should probably knock once again. What if Rune is sick? All kinds of scenarios run through my mind. Oh gosh, please answer. I don’t want to be a nuisance and disrupt her rest. However, when it comes to Rune and Jack now answering is worrisome. “Hello, Rune? Jack? Are you two okay”? No answer. Okay, time to get to the bottom of this. I pull out the key they gave me.

When I make my way inside I look around. “Hello”? No answer, once again. Where did they go? This is beyond strange for them. No note or anything. Their phone is here too. Maybe they just forgot it. I decide not to overstress myself or over think it. Sometimes I jump to conclusions far too easily. Well, I guess I will just have to wait for them. It is all I can do for the moment. I decide to turn on some television to help my mind wander and relax.

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