Darkest Star, Brightest Shadow

There are some times in life where even the brightest of stars can become so dark and corrupt, that they are unstoppable. It is at this time of peril that a nobody, an insignificant little shadow, must step up to face the enemy. Umbra. Umbra must step up, and become the brightest of all shadows...


26. Final battle: Part two

The two shadow panthers - fearsome, larger than life panthers with scaled wings - dived at Zephyr.

"Umbra, fight the shifter, Talen. But be careful!" he warned, as Umbra and Thorn leaped from his back, Thorn; with her ninjato drawn, Umbra; with his sword ready. Talen shifted back into the goblin king, face cruel with hate. Umbra lunged at the shapeshifter, sword ready. The shifter turned swiftly into a fly so to evade Umbra's attack. Then, before either of them could fry him with their elemental attacks, Talen turned into Lazarus. This Lazarus, however, had a face crueler than cruel, eyes more meanacing than any other. He shot fire at Umbra, who quickly responded with a blast of water. How glad Umbra was that Tide had taught him so well. The fire and water turned to steam within miliseconds, as Thorn fired a bolt of dark energy. Talen ducked, then turned into Umbra.

"Thorn, I love you!" he mimicked in a mocking tone. The assassin growled, and charged at Talen. The shifter shot her with a blast of lightning. Thorn didn't cry out; just staggered back.

"THORN!" Umbra yelled, raising his hand and summoning a mound of earth up to surround Talen as he ran to Thorn.

"I'm fine." Thorn lied, looking over to the temporary rock-prison. It wasn't this easy though; she knew that. Both her and Umbra moved forwards cautiously, senses alert. Without warning, the rocks parted, and Talen - in the form of Marcus - leaped out.

"Foolish little Umbra." the shapeshifter laughed evilly. "Try again." This time, Umbra charged with his sword. Talen let him come forwards, then changed into Zephyr when his attacker was almost upon him. Umbra faltered fora second, and that was all Talen needed to rake his talons across Umbra's cheek. Umbra leaped back the second time 'Zephyr' came at him, finding it slightly odd to be attacking the phoenix whom he'd grown to love. Nobody, even Umbra, didn't notice Thorn sneaking up behind Talen with her ninjato drawn. Umbra sidestepped once more, and then found the shapeshifter screaming as Thorn attacked from behind. Talen whirled around, then threw the assassin into a wall. He changed into Carnelian, and charged at Umbra. Umbra managed to deflect all of the shifter's blows, even strike a few shallow wounds. As Thorn ran forwards again, Talen turned to deflect her blow, leaving his back free forUmbra to attck. As the boy thrust the sword forwards, Talen shifted into Zephyr again, smashing his wing against the protector. Umbra went flying, crashing to the floor and landing hard on his back. Umbra sent vines from the ground, restraining Talen for enough time for Thorn to help Umbra up. And then, Thorn started screaming in pain. Worry flooded through Umbra as Thorn collapsed to her knees, face showing pain and agony. Feathered wings errupted from her back. Black wings. Dark angel wings.

"Thorn, you...?" Umbra gasped in shock, managing no more than two words. The assassin hardly heard him; the agony was consuming her. Thorn's body started to tremble violently, jerking with the pain.

"I'm... Dark angel." she managed, her voice rasped and filled with pain. "Sorry..." she whispered in a voice coated thick with pain. And then, she simply crumpled.

"She's always been a dark angel." Talen taunted. "Oh, and your friends are struggling. Let me show you." the shifter hissed, finally snapping free of the vines. Charging at Umbra, Talen shifted again, into Carnelian, and smashed Umbra's head into the floor. He then turned back to the goblin king, and pressed Umbra's head to the floor. A dark magic antered Umbra's mind, showing him how the army and his friends were doing. He saw Tide, with a spear head showing through his chest,whispering a last few words to Petal. No... The feary was dead... Moving on, the vision showed him Lazarus and Carnelian, fighting side by side. Both were fatally wounded. Jet, covered in blood, was staying near Aquila and Prophet. Prophet had tears of pain on her face - she was missing a thumb and she had a deep cut on her forehead. Aquila had five arrows sticking out of him, and was covered in cuts. Marcus was dying - it was clear that he had lost to much blood. Even Aquila would not be able to save him. The army was hopelessly outnumbered - they were slowly going from winning to loosing. Inferno and Sundance were both covered in wounds, and were soaked in blood. Blizzard had lost a fang, and her white fur was stained red with blood. And Zephyr... He was clearly not doing well, with blood covering him. One of the shadow panthers was almost dead, the other still strong and fighting.


Umbra broke free of the vision, and turned, slamming his sword into Talen. But the shifter had already sidestepped. The sword hit nothing. Umbra swung his sword to Talen, but again, the shifter evaded. Umbra threw himself at the shifter, ready for more fighting.


Thorn groaned in agony, her throat too dry to cry out. But she had... Wings. She flapped them experimentally, and they worked. They dragged her off the floor as she beat them harder. And then she was... Flying. Thorn remembered the last time this had happened. When she had been so much smaller than Jet, like his little shadow. And then, they had dragged Jet away while they cut off her wings. Cut them off, and left bloody stumps. After that, any pain had been nothing. She had been human, and she had killed. But she had not gone corrupt. She had just killed for her own reasons, and she had remembered. Remembered Jet, who she had followed everywhere. Like her big brother, but not of the same bloodline. And the pain when the one eyed creep had cut off her wings. And dragged Jet away after, screaming to let Thorn live. But they had left her. She thought him dead, he thought her dead. Until Umbra brought them back... Umbra! He needed help. But her mind didn't work. It wanted her to kill everything... Even Umbra... Even Jet. Thorn tried to struggle against her mind, fighting it for control. While Umbra was dying. Umbra... the one she loved.


Umbra, his body blood soaked, could hardly get up. His limbs were too battered to give up, his mind too scared and in pain to work straight.

"Give up yet?" Talen hissed. His face was horrible.

"No. I don't." Thorn's voice, now strong, powerful, and well, like Thorn's voice, echoed through the shifter's ears.

"You were supposed to be-"

"Corrupt? Yes, I know that. But I was strong. I fought it, and now I'm going to help my friend." Thorn snarled. She darted with an intense speed towards Talen,knocking him away from Umbra, who was still marvelling at Thorn. She must have discovered her other power...

"Umbra, combine your elements. It's the only way to kill him." Thorn spoke. Umbra nodded, and concentrated all his power into this blast. Three... Two...


One... Zero... The blast smashes through the shapeshifter, reducing him to ashes. As he dies, I hear his antagonising screams. And as I blast the remaining shadow panther, in perfect sync with Umbra, I hear it's screams as well. This fight has been long. But we won. The Protector and his storm phoenix... We won. Then, exhausted and in pain, we both fall to the groun, blacking out.

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