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Nocturna league (episode.., p.6
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       Nocturna League (Episode 2: The Mist Hour), p.6

           Kell Inkston
 
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  Chapter 6: A Most Unpleasant Realization

  The two moons bend around whatever planet they’re on, and this land’s sun peeks over the horizon. People wake up with a knowing fire in their hearts- they understand the intensity today will hold. Colette is poked awake by the bartender, “Hey, guy’s calling for you… I think.”

  Colette wipes the sleep from her eyes with a full motion of the hand. “Got it, thanks,” she says, listening to Boris say: “COLETTE FOOD, COLETTE FOOD!” over and over in the bar.

  “Yeah,” the bartender says, going back to his corner to curl up. Colette exits the room and gives a prompt, half-hearted salute to Boris. “That time?”

  Boris nods. “IT IS OF THE TIME OF THE SOON. YOU MUST BE OF THE READYING.”

  Colette nods back, stretches, steals some pub food, and exits the bar. Around her, people are wary. Shifting glances inspect one another as Colette steps through the streets nearing noon. She strolls up to the Ganastere Estate and ducks into an alley. There’s already eight other people in it.

  “Hell’re you?” one of the cloaked men asks.

  “Who want’s to kn-”

  “Guys, I know this girl. Hi, Colette,” one of the other men says, leaning up from his place at the wall and gesturing toward her.

  Colette smirks, seeing someone she recognizes from last night pull off his hood. “Itrim- So these are the Kalamests?”

  She’s met with affirmations all around her.

  “Excellent. They don’t stand a chance,” she says.

  Itrim hums. “Not quite sure on that one, actually. Did you take care of your captain?” He asks, a sea-breeze blowing past their alley.

  Colette smirks. “I have him handled. He won’t join us, but he won’t be in our way.”

  The Kalamests exchange nods and impressed looks about themselves. Itrim turns back to Colette. “Okay, Colette. Here’s the deal. There’s a magic barrier that prevents our entry.”

  She squints an eye. “I could get in just fine.”

  “I know, because you’re not a Kalamest,” Itrim says.

  Colette shakes her head in confusion. “Wait, what? So I can go in, but Kalamests can’t? How will you help me during the fight?”

  Itrim holds his hand up, as if to calm her. “We’ll need you to draw them out of their mansion. Only the mansion itself is protected by the barrier, so you raise a ruckus inside, and pull them out for us.”

  Hearing his plan, she strokes her chin a moment, and slowly, a look of devious certainty beguiles her features. “You know, I have a better idea.”

  Itrim raises a brow. “All ears, captain,” he says.

  She retrieves from her pockets the Gauntlets of Mist, and a gasp blows over the entire group. “Oh, Vuru. Those can’t really be-”

  She grins from ear to ear as the men gawk at her success. “They absolutely are.”

  The group stares on in some form of absolute awe- that this girl completed in a single night, something that has taken them their lives up to this point. “I can’t…” Itrim has difficulty speaking the rest, instead he leans in and embraces Colette.

  “Wh-what the hell, dude! I know it’s nice I got the gauntlets, but it’s not that nice!”

  “It’s done! We’ve done it!” Itrim exclaims as he takes up the gauntlets and shows it to the others. Cheering, hugging, and tears can be seen among the crowd, and Colette sighs.

  “Great, you got both gauntlets, now can we go and kick their asses?”

  Uneasy glances are exchanged in the crowd. “Eh, well, to be honest, Colette, we got what we need.”

  Everyone listens to the breeze and Colette’s features curl in disgust. “…What?”

  “Um, thought we’d have you steal the gauntlets for us while we distracted the Ganasteres outside.”

  She shakes her head dismissively as a few of the men chuckle at her animated display. “B-but what about the people? You know, the ones they kidnapped?”

  Itrim tames his smile into a serious look. “We can’t really help you. We just wanted our birthright back.” There’s a row of snickers and nudges between the men, as if they’re in on some supreme joke- Colette has a terrible sense of humor.

  “I can’t believe you! I thought you cared about the people you ruled over!”

  Itrim nods. “We do, it’s just that this birthright is much more important. People come and go, but the gauntlets have lasted for generations.”

  Colette slaps the middle of her face. “Really?”

  “Really. Sorry, Colette.”

  She takes a deep breath. “Fine! I’ll do it myself! The Captain was right!” Colette turns to leave.

  “Right about wh-… Oh, and there she goes,” Itrim says as she disappears down the alley in front of him. He turns to the others and shrugs. “Well, it’s finally time. This midnight will be one not a soul will forget,” he says, grinning with his Kalamest brothers.

  Colette remembered the Captain’s words. “If something is broken, you are the only one who can fix it.” The phrase rings in her mind as she struts up to the Ganastere mansion, draws her revolver and shoots into the lock. With a deep breath she slams her entirety into the door, forcing it open. She spots a man adjacent to her frantically scrambling for a crossbow at the side of the room. “Freeze, bitch!” is all she needs to say before the man stops cold. With a decisive smack she pistol whips the door guard and sends him to the ground out cold. Several people gather around the inside foyer and guards pour in with weapons poised at the young lady.

  “That’s far enough! One more step and we’ll shoot!” A front-most man says with a trained aim.

  Colette laxly points the gun at the unconscious man at her feet. “Give me a reason,” she says, training her scope right at the man’s head.

  Gasps are exchanged between the waitstaff, and the guards tense in fear.

  “Go on,” she adds, “give me a single damn reason not to shoot him.”

  A spry lad scoffs at Colette’s declaration. “Yeah, as if you would! If you shoot that guy, you’re dead!”

  Colette’s expression is mixed a moment, but falls to a relaxed smile. “Alright, then I’ll shoot as many of you as I can before I die from bolt injuries. I bet I can get at least five of you… who will it be?”

  The guards, only seven in number, nervously exchange glances. The spry lad, holding down his tremors, grins as widely as he can. “Y-yeah! But you’d still die! No one would be so crazy as t-” The guard stops once Colette draws a sharp, deep breath, and points the gun at her own person.
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