“Ember, run!” he shouted as the demon rose up from the ground. “Quick, if we kill it we can still make it to the capital on time!” He drew his sword and charged at the demon.
“Wait! It’s an S class demon, let me handle it!” Ember replied as the demon attempted to hit her, but she jumped onto the demon’s arm and sprinted up it. As she jumped, Ember drew her sword through the side of the demon’s head, and it fell to the ground. She landed. “There Dante. Finished!” she sniggered.
Ember and Dante had been friends for as long as they could remember. Both of Ember’s parents had died when she was seven, and she had gone to live with Dante’s family, so she had known him for twelve years. He was like a brother to her. When they turned eleven they had both decided to join the army, and after a few years they were at the top of the ranks.
“Hey, I had that! I could’ve handled it!” Dante shouted as he ran up to Ember. “Come on, let’s get going,” He added as they walked away. “If I’m correct we’re going to be partnered up for this mission. In my opinion we don’t need them; we are way too over-powered to be teamed up with a bunch of rookies. I think they should just send our squad: you, me, Ein and Lucy. Don’t you think so?” Dante whispered to Ember.
“Hey Dante, I’m not going on the mission. I’m leaving the academy. You can come if you want,” Ember said.
“Ember I would… I really want to, but the academy is everything to me. We’ll really miss you Ember,” Dante said sadly.
“Dante, it’s ok I understand. Tell the others I’m sorry. Bye Dante!” Ember said, smiling, as she walked away. “Goodbye!” Dante called after her.
Five years later
As the demon beast chased him, Liam screamed “Em! Get him before he bites my head off! Hurry!”
“On it! Riku, get the legs! Akari, get the small ones! I’m on the head!” Ember shouted in reply as she jumped on the demon’s back.
“It’s a C class wolf beast. If we kill its master, then they will all die.” Akari reminded everyone.
“Isn’t that what we’re here for? The whole point of the job is to kill the target!” grumbled Liam in an annoyed tone. “One of four legs done.” said Riku as he ran to chop off another leg with his demon blade: a rare sort of axe weapon.
Ember, Riku, Akari and Liam were known as Scarlet Demon: an assassin organisation known for their demon weapons, made from the blood of different demons. They had the only four ever made, which gave them a demon name, after the demon blood that was in their weapons. The wolf demon Riku with his axe, Blood Fang, the sea snake demon Liam with his M24 Sniper Weapon, Serpents Tail, the eagle demon Akari with her staff, Broken Feather, and finally the dragon demon Ember with her sword, Velvet Wing.
As Ember jumped she drew her sword and stabbed it right through the demon’s head. “There, done. Liam, Akari, Riku come on!” Ember shouted as they ran through the forest. “Ok, me and Riku will go after the target. Liam, Akari, go after the guards.” she said as they arrived at the target’s house.
“From my sources, the target is general Yamamoto, head of the Wolven squad. They are in charge of defeating C class demons and adding them to the army,” said Akari.
“Ok, attack!” yelled Ember. She and Riku jumped on the roof of the mansion, and Riku broke a hole into the roof. They jumped in to the hall. “General Yamamoto, prepare to die,” Ember said confidently as they ran towards the general. Drawing her sword, Ember cut the general’s arm clean off. The general then drew his sword, known as death blade, and charged at Riku. Just in time, he drew his axe and sliced off both of the general’s legs from beneath him. Ember walked up to the general and looked him square in the eyes. “Farewell, general,” she said as she sliced off his head. “Mission complete!”
As the two of them walked out the building, they saw that Akari and Liam had defeated all of the guards. “Good work you two. We’re done here.” Ember said cheerfully as she pulled from her pocket a small teleport crystal, and they teleported to their base. “Everyone, I’m going to head to town. See you guys later.” Ember said as she walked off.
When Ember got to town, she noticed some wanted posters of her team. “It’s too risky to send the others; luckily they don’t know what me and Riku look like,” she thought to herself as she walked. When she got back to base, she saw that Riku was training with Liam. “Hey Riku, try not to kill Liam!” she laughed.
“Hey! That’s not funny!” Liam replied in annoyance. He had started to turn red. Ember walked inside the base, leaving Liam fuming. “Akari, can you go into town tomorrow and talk to the boss about getting some new members?” Ember asked Akari.
“Consider it done!” Akari answered happily. Ember walked outside again to see how Riku and Liam were doing. “Do you guys mind if I train with you for a bit?” Ember asked them, drawing her sword. “No, we don’t mind,” Riku said. “Right Liam? We don’t mind at all.”
“No not at all.” Liam replied. Ember walked up to them and they began the training.
After a few hours, they went inside their base. It was a large, spacious cottage type building where they planned all of their missions and trained, the core of their team. “I’m going to start on dinner. What do you guys want?” Ember asked everyone.
“You can pick Ember.” Akari replied, as her, Liam and Riku sat down, excited to see what Ember was going to cook up for dinner. Ember turned on the oven and ran to the cupboard to get the ingredients. Twenty minutes later she placed on the table four steaming plates of Teriyaki Salmon. “Dig in!” Ember announced happily as she sat down at the head of the table. “So how is it?”
“It’s amazing!” replied Riku as he shoved it all into his mouth. “Best food I’ve ever had.”
After dinner, everyone was very tired. “Good night guys. Akari, don’t forget about getting new members in the morning, and I have three new jobs for us. We’ll discuss them in the morning; now let’s hit the hay.” Ember said then headed upstairs. The scarlet demons had been staying in a small five bedroomed cottage in the woods whilst the academy, a much larger assassin squad who the scarlet demons had done some jobs for and were allied with, were rebuilding their old house which burnt down (due to a Liam cooking incident).
Ember walked into her room. It was the biggest bedroom in the house. She sat down on her small red single bed and lay back on the black pillows, lost in thought as she stared out of the large window, white curtains blowing about in the slight breeze. She finally got up and pulled on her pyjamas, still thinking as she looked at a picture of her and her old friend and partner, Dante. A knock at her door broke her train of thought. “Coming,” Ember called as she ran to the door. She opened it and to her surprise, stood at the door was Liam. “Umm Ember, have you seen my pyjamas?” Liam asked anxiously as he scratched his head.
“Oh yeah, I saw Riku burning them. He said that they smelt really bad.” Ember said as she smiled.
“Really! I’m going to kill him!” Liam grumbled angrily. Ember laughed and smiled “You!” Liam shouted, annoyed.
“You’re so gullible! No, Riku didn’t burn your pyjamas! They’re in the washing room.” Ember laughed .
“Thanks, Em good night.” Liam said smiling as he walked away.
The next day, Ember awoke to the sun’s light glimmering through the window. She immediately left her bed and walked towards the wardrobe, swinging the door wide open. “What should I wear today?” Ember wondered to herself. She would normally wear her armour for a mission, but today she was going to wear her black and red kimono t-shirt, and her black trousers. She quickly dressed and ran downstairs. “Ok everyone, let’s get going,” she looked at them all as she spoke and in doing so she realised that Akari wasn’t there. “Where’s Akari gone?” she said, shocked. It was unlike Akari to be late. “She left to get the new members, remember?” Riku answered as he turned to open the front door. “Let’s go.”
“Yeah!” Ember and Liam shouted they marched out the door. They started to run. After a while, they arrived at the outskirts of town. Ember pointed to the roofs of the houses as a signal to Liam and Riku. At the same time all three of them jumped and safely landed on the roof of a large house and started to run across the rooftops. “Em, how long until we get to the first target?” Liam questioned Ember as they jumped off another building and continued to run. Ember stopped and Liam and Riku stopped behind her. “We’re here,” Ember said in answer, and she pointed towards a mansion nearby. The three of them jumped down and drew their weapons. “We’ll split up and go after all of the targets that live here, ok?” she whispered, and Liam and Riku went different ways. Ember charged towards the house. She got to the door and opened it, then walked in, and was immediately face to face with the first target. She raised her sword and smiled; blood sprayed everywhere as she stabbed him.
As she removed her sword from the body, she heard a voice. “Hey! What do you think you’re doing!” yelled the voice. Ember turned around to see a blond boy, sword pointed towards her. “How could you kill these people? What did they do to you?” He charged at Ember, and she quickly blocked. The boy didn’t slow down, and he continued to swing and stab, but she dodged lightly and blocked, yet not able to get a single attack in. Flashbacks of training with Dante came to her.
After a while, Ember spotted another target in the distance. “Run!” shouted the boy, spotting the girl too, but it was too late; Ember stabbed her. She turned to the boy. “Why do you want to help these people? They’re murderers, they kill for fun. My employer’s entire family was killed by them. Why help them?” Ember questioned him. The boy looked at Ember, a shocked expression on his face. “No! You’re lying! They would never do that!” the boy denied as he charged at Ember again. Blood splattered on the ground; he had manged to stab her in the arm. Ember darted away, blood trailing behind her, she turned towards the door. It had a large lock, and Ember placed her hand on it. It glowed bright yellow and the lock vanished the door swung open. Inside was thousands of bodies, soaked in blood. The boy stared open-mouthed at a lady stood in the middle, holding a blood-stained knife. Running towards her, he shouted, “How could you do this Yui! I trusted you! I defended you! You…YOU MURDERER!” He raised his sword and sliced Yui clean in half. Then he knelt over the body, tears rolling down his face.
After a few minutes, Ember walked towards him. “Come with me kid, I’m sorry.” She wrapped her arm around his shoulder and they walked out of the house. Standing out on a blood-soaked field was Liam and Riku. “Who’s the kid?” asked Liam, confused, as Ember and the boy approached them. Ember turned to face the boy, ignoring Liam’s question. “Kid, I’m sorry about what happened today. I know you trusted these people. But if you come with us, there is a way to stop this sort of thing from repeating itself.” The boy said nothing, but his expression showed interest. “We are an assassin organisation, called Scarlet Demon. We avenge, we kill people like those we killed today. If you come with us, you can do the same,” she continued. The sadness in the boy’s eyes changed to anger. “I will join. I will join Scarlet Demon and help you kill murderers like Yui. And I will never trust anyone again.”
“No, you will.” Ember smiled at him. “My name’s Ember, and this is Liam and Riku. And Akari, our other team member, is back at base. You can trust us.” The boy smiled back and nodded. “I’m Sora. And I think we should get going.”
“Ok team, let’s go!” Ember announced to all of them as she threw a large blue crystal on to the ground. “Open,” said Ember as a portal appeared. She stepped through the portal, and the three of them followed after her. They ended up outside of their house and waiting for them was Akari and a young blond school girl. “Hi Ember, this is Lilith. She’s our new member,” Akari told them. The girl smiled cheekily and stepped forward. “Hi, I’m Lilith. It’s nice to meet you all.”
“It’s nice to meet you too Lilith. This is Liam and Riku and this is Sora.” Ember said, indicating her friends. Looking at Akari’s puzzled expression as she stared at Sora, she added “We found him in the target’s house, and he wants to join too.” Suddenly, she grabbed her wounded arm, grimacing in pain. “Ember, you’re injured!” Riku exclaimed, looking shocked as he ran to her. It was still bleeding a little. “I’m fine! Really! It will take only a few seconds to heal,” Ember reassured him.
“Sora, Lilith, come with me; I’ll show you around.” She walked over to the house, with them trailing after her. Ember opened the door and walked in. “This is the living room. The kitchen’s over there… umm sorry for the mess. Anyway, follow me!” She went to the stairs and turned and smiled at them. Sora’s cheeks flushed bright red. Ember went up the stairs and turned down the hall, gesturing to the room to the right. “This can be your room Lilith.” Suddenly she turned away from them and her expression went very serious. A strong breeze blew through the hall. She turned back, eyes fixed on them and she said in a deeper, darker tone, “Are you prepared to murder people to take a life? Are you prepared to sacrifice the things you care about? To save hundreds? Are you ready to kill as many people as it takes to save the empire you love?”
“Yes, we are prepared.” Sora and Lilith replied, slightly confused but assuming this was a normal thing for new members.
The wind stopped, and Ember turned and walked to the end of the corridor. She looked at them again, but she had a strangely pleased expression on her face. “This can be your room Sora. It’s Liam’s, but he sleeps on the sofa most of the time. So yeah, you two get settled and we can begin with dinner, anything you want in particular?” she said looking at the two of them, still smiling. She seemed to be completely different from before and made no reference to her questions. “Well, I don’t mind,” Sora muttered, looking back at her. He was really confused now. Lilith looked confused too but smiled and nodded. “I don’t mind either.”
Ember walked down the stairs. When she got to the bottom, she went into the kitchen where she started to make dinner. She tied her hair in a ponytail and grabbed her apron. Knives were flying, pans were sizzling as she cooked up the next meal. Sora walked down the stairs, still thinking about Ember’s strange speech before, but completely forget as he saw her cooking. He stopped at the bottom and stared at her, now thinking about how amazing and talented Ember was. Suddenly she stopped and looked at him like she was questioning what he was doing there. “Dinner’s done,” she said as walked to the table and placed two plates down. “WOW!” Sora looked amazed, gazing at the wonderful dishes she had created. Lilith ran down the stairs and went to the table. “I smelt food; it looks delicious!” she said as she sat down. “Why’s there only two? Are you not eating Ember?” Ember shook her head and walked out the back-door. Lilith assumed she was going to train. Sora watched her as she left and sighed. “She’s pretty cool, right?” he asked Lilith, still staring at the door Ember had disappeared through. Lilith smiled in with an evil look. “Someone’s in love!” she said in a mischievous sing song voice. Sora blushed extremely red and started to freak out. “W… what? NO! I’m not! What are you talking about!” Lilith giggled, enjoying his embarrassment.
“Liam, Riku, Akari, you get intel on the army.” Ember said to the three of them who had been waiting outside. As soon as they heard these words, they immediately used a portal to get to town. The three of them started going around town in cloak, trying to get information about the army. After a while, they met in a dark alley. “Liam, anything?” Riku asked him.
“No, nothing!” Liam said, sounding frustrated. “How about you Akari?”
“Yep! I got something an army solider told me. There’s a contest to find the best warriors in wolveanea,” Akari told them.
“But wolveanea is a massive country. Why do they need warriors?” Riku said. Akari looked grim, and reluctantly replied, “They’re making a Scarlet demon killing squad. They’re trying to eliminate us. They’re going to kill us all. Wipe us of the face of the earth.”