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334 Retrieval, A Faint Hope for the Enemy

 Day 54 - 11:30 AM - South District, Bay City Settlement, Parañaque City, Metro Manila

The light colored clouds at the sky above the settlement gathered faster and faster fusing into dark gray clouds that were the most common sign of a heavy rain or worst, a storm. It was as if a storm was going to form exactly with the settlement at the center. No one here had ever seen a phenomenon like this.

At the tent city and all other residential areas, the people stayed in their houses and tents because of the confrontation between the military and the camp of the rebelling Senator Estrada. Now however, not only those outside stood in place watching the sky, those who were inside wondering why it suddenly turned dark went out only to stare at the sky with shocked faces.

No one expected to witness something like this to happen, it made almost everyone stood in place outside their dwellings with heads facing the sky. It was a very peculiar sight as their brains failed to register the danger that they could have been facing if this was a natural disaster.

Or maybe, they just did not know what they had to do. If this disaster really befell on this settlement, they had nowhere to go with the infected cities surrounding the settlement. Even if they escaped, the chances that they would survive outside for long was nil.

They could only stare at the sky praying that the worst would not come.

***

"General, the sky..."

"I have eyes. You don't have to tell me."

Captain Dela Rosa and General Perez exchanged words as they also stared at the sky.

Outside the Industrial Area, the focus of the soldiers was now at the sky instead of the ongoing battle inside.

"Sir Lopez, do you think it's the same as you reported in NAIA?"

General Perez turned to the older Major. As the one leading the operation in NAIA, he witnessed the phenomenon there firsthand. Since the perpetrators back then and the people they were fighting now were obviously from the same group due to their clothes and the former members of Senator Estrada's alliance confession also told the same. It would not be surprising that they would create another disturbance like this.

Back then before the outbreak, Auraboros would surely not try to do anything like this in a large scale and in an obvious manner. Even though they had forces composed of strange beings, they would not be able to withstand it if the whole world suddenly besieged them. Now that the previous world had fallen apart, they were free to do what they wanted and in any scale they could.

To the General's question however, Major Lopez shook his head.

"It's different. Back in NAIA, the strange clouds came out of nowhere and spread from the center. The clouds above us are doing the exact opposite."

While the two were talking, a report from the soldiers they sent to the eastern wall of the settlement to check about that beam of light came in. Unfortunately, the situation could not be confirmed immediately as the area where the beam came from was hidden by the over pass and trees but the thing they confirmed was that the Baclaran Church turned into ruins. There was also the appearance of a dragon like creature which seemed to be fighting something on the ground but it required further investigation. The dragon was already out of sight as they saw it land at the vicinity of the church.

Hearing about the dragon like creature made the officers that already heard about the news from the military settlement in Quezon think. General Faustino himself informed them through the radio that the person called Mark and his group would be coming riding a dragon like creature. Although they were still in disbelief about it, the reports they received from the other settlement proved it otherwise.

The dragon appearing near the settlement added the murders of the people that had conflict with "Team Fairy" proved the thought General Perez had. If that creature appeared there without anyone even noticing, it meant that the person they had been waiting for was lurking around exacting revenge on his own.

While in that though, a hurried voice came in from the radio.

"West Wall to HQ! We confirmed visuals of the dragon again! It's flying towards the settlement! W-wait! There seemed to be someone riding on the dragon's back! We are waiting for instructions!"

Hearing that, the officers looked at each other and nodded.

"HQ to West Wall. Do not shoot and let them enter the settlement. I repeat! DO NOT SHOOT!"

Although they were confused, the soldiers on the west wall affirmed the order and just watched the dragon fly over them.

Soon, the dragon was already in sight. The soldiers around the Industrial Area were already informed and were already in defensive stance if things had gone awry.

***

Mark flew on Chaflar's back watching the soldiers below. Since they did not shoot, he expected that the military had already deduced that he was here. After all, they had been looking for him and his group already these past days.

With the soldiers in the way, Mark needed to make them retreat first. As such, he made Chaflar land near the area where he could see familiar faces.

As the dragon landed, the soldiers became more alerted. He was still wearing the robe he got from the enemies after all. Mark noticed it and removed the hood covering his head to make them sure that he was human. He also removed his mask which showed his face towards Major Lopez and Captain Dela Rosa.

Seeing the rather familiar face, both the Major and the Captain felt relieved. They stepped forwards with General Perez to welcome him but before they could speak.

"You are General Perez am I right?" Mark spoke in a rather cold tone that made everyone feel that something is wrong. "We can do the introductions and talk later. I want you to make your soldiers evacuate the Industrial Area."

Mark then turned around and was about to make Chaflar fly once more but Captain Dela Rosa called out.

"Wait! Why do you want to make us retreat?"

Of course, everyone that heard Mark had that question in mind.

Mark turned his head and replied.

"I have some business with those people in robes. All of them will have to die. If your soldiers got caught in it, don't blame me."

With those words, Chaflar took flight once more. This time, Mark made the dragon circle the industrial area as if announcing his presence. In fact, he needed to wait till the soldiers retreated. That was when he was going to make a move.

***

"No wonder that guy and his companion left after taking away Flam."

Dopp frowned as he watched the dragon flying at the sky.

"What are we going to do now?"

Devon asked. Emmett had already told them his encounter with the group which left him severely wounded. That dragon was also there and it was now obvious that the man that defeated Flam and those people were in the same group. It meant that that guy flying in the sky would be looking for the sylph they had just taken with great sacrifices.

"Start the ceremony early. That guy is not someone we can deal with. He took down Flam in seconds. That thing in the sky should also be his doing. We need his help."

Hearing that, the robed figures waiting for orders in the room hurried out of the building. They went to the largest warehouse.

There, five hundred unconscious people were lined up in accordance to the symbols on the floor written in blood.

Then, five people wearing white clothes stood at the center of the symbols forming a circle. At their center, a pentagram was drawn. Raising their hands, the five figures started to pray.

"Tsk. We don't have much time." Dopp spoke. "Prepare to retreat. The ritual will take some time but I don't think that guy up there will wait too long. The soldiers are already retreating so he might be waiting for them to finish. I don't know why but we already finished one of our missions here. That guy for sure had done something against the Great One. I can feel it."

"Retreat? What retreat? What about our agreement? If you people offended that person outside because you took his companion, just return this insect back!"

Hearing the word retreat did not click well with Senator Estrada and he immediately shouted furiously. He grabbed Dopp by his shoulders and started shaking him.

BAM!

Dopp just made a slight push and the Senator was flung unto the opposite wall causing the latter to vomit quite an amount of blood. He was just a normal person, that force that was used to him was enough to severely injure him.

"Are you an idiot?" Dopp spoke. "A pure elemental being cannot be compared to that agreement you are speaking of."

Dopp then ignored the senator who could not even talk back anymore. He started to prepare to leave with Devon who was using his [Psychic Barrier] as a cage putting Aephelia inside.

"Leaving? Don't bother. Even if you people return her, I won't leave you all alive."

The chilling voice was heard inside the room causing everyone to freeze.

Dopp immediately retreated away from the source of the voice while Devon raised his hand to create a barrier in front of him.

There, they saw a figure appear out of thin air.

"F*ck! It's that camouflage ability again!" Dopp cursed. "How are you here? Who's the one outside if you are here?!"

"What? You call another guy an idiot but you're also an idiot that fell for a fake."

Mark who was not wearing his robe anymore spoke with ridicule. The one riding Chaflar right now was only an empty robe made to stand using [Blood Metal]. Mark was already on the way to secure Aephelia first.

He then turned his head towards Devon who had Aephelia in his barrier.

"Giver her back and I'll secure a painless death for you."

"F*ck you!"

Devon replied and flung his hand. He created a barrier that moved forwards in attempt to push Mark back.

To his horror, Mark raised his hand releasing black smoke. When that smoke touched the barrier Devon made, the barrier slowly disintegrated.

"So, you want the hard way is it?"

POOF!

Mark vanished and turned into mist. The mist and smoke mixed inside the room which made everyone try to dodge.

It did not take long and the smoke vanished with Mark appearing once more. When they looked at him however, they were surprised to see that he was already holding what he came here for.

Dopp turned to the cage Devon made with his ability and there was nothing inside anymore. Furthermore, Devon was on a strange position and was frozen without moving. Only his head was able to move but it was obvious that he was in extreme pain.

"You peasants are all too weak. I overestimated you all. Auraboros is just some shabby organization made for wimps."

Mark said as he looked at everyone in ridicule. Sure enough, he could feel everyone here aside from Senator Estrada who was barely conscious and Devon that could not move at all felt infuriated. However, none of them spoke or went to attack in fury.

"I'll take my leave for now." Mark spoke once more. "By the way, I will have you all give me an entertaining show. I wonder who will last the longest."

He then vanished in the room leaving a chilling smile in their minds.

Dopp inhaled in relief seeing their enemy leave but he did not let his guard down. The pressure being emitted by Mark just now was terrifying for everyone here.

"We lost. Let's leave."

"GRRRG!"

Dopp decided as he looked at Devon. Although Devol could still move his head, it seemed that his voice was also sealed.

It was then that a chilling report came in.

"Sir Dopp! Sir Dopp!"

A shadow person came in, not from the shadows but running into the room through the door.

"A wall of we suspected to be Miasma surrounded the whole Industrial Area! All of our people were severely weakened and could not use their abilities anymore!"

"Sh*t! Miasma? Who the f*ck did we mess with?"

Dopp cursed as he slammed his fist on the wall. No wonder that Devon's ability was useless and Flam was easily captured. Furthermore, if there was miasma surrounding the place, the shadow people would not be able to leave at all and that was their only way of escape now.

"No, there is still a way! If it's that person, then..."

Dopp remembered something and he ran off towards the warehouse were the ritual was ongoing leaving Devon to his demise inside the room.