[Mock-Fiction] IV - Alea Iacta Est {Rogue's Story}

Note: Please read the Formal Notice movella. It should be on the list on the right hand side.

Yup. Just the one perspective.

Cover by Secrets Unfold

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3. 1 - The Funeral and Plans

The members of the Brotherhood stood around wordlessly, garbed – from head to toe – in black robes. Their heads down, mouths hushed. Some wept silently, and others went to the extent of passing-out.

 

The bodies of their lost comrades – Vesp and Eclecticboy – was stacked high onto the funeral pyre, their eyes closed and their bodies encased in the best clothes Masyaf could offer. Rogue and Richard placed the weapons of the fallen onto the pyre – Vesp’s armour and Eclecticboy’s rifle – and then climbed down. Rogue stood off to a side, the mask not revealing her emotions, and bowed her head and fist to her chest.

All shall fade,” she whispered, a tear dripping out of an eyehole and steaming down the bone-white facade.

A mercenary strode up to the pyre – blazing torch in hand – and the wood caught fire immediately. In the distance, the Bedouins pointed and gasped; a flickering flame and billowing smoke erupting like lava from a volcano filled the azure sky of Syria.

 

* * * * *

 

Three months later...

 

 

 

“Finally!” said Abbess Britney, “You’re here!”

 

Rogue stepped into the Bureau – no mask – rubbing her bandaged forehead. She wore tight, black trousers and a thin grey cardigan, under which was an off white vest. She looked up, bleary-eyed. All the members were seated around a rectangular table, hands on the polished wood, cups of water next to them. Some of the new members were also present. Besides the Abbess, Lia, Jess and Myra [but surprisingly, no Richard], there were a new group of Assassins that Rogue hadn’t quite acquainted herself with, and had only heard about through messages from the others.

 

 There was a girl with bright red hair and dark brown eyes, dressed in loose-fitting pyjamas and a hoodie.

Finally, someone who agrees with my dress-sense, thought Rogue.

This girl, Kiestin was in Richard’s league, a master assassin. Sad. Rogue wished there would be more women in her barracks. Men were so useless when it came to the fine arts. Next to her was Emmie. She had cat-like features with pale skin, red hair and brown eyes, spectacles resting on her fine nose. She was slightly over weight [Food is awesome, thought Rogue], but not too out of shape. It was no big deal anyway; Emmie was with Lia – an ingenious inventor and a sly pickpocket also.

 

Rogue smiled in recognition at Enya. Enya Sanders was not only an amazing mercenary, assassin but a very thorough diplomat. The girl could add a twenty-fifth hour to the clock if she tried hard enough. She was a tall brunette, her wavy hair pulled back in an unfussy ponytail; her brown eyes glinting with intelligence. She wore a close-fitting green dress, held by a belt bearing weapons and a dangerous variation of poisons, with a slit down one side. Rogue’s smile waned a little, suddenly feeling self-conscious.

 

She shook off the feeling, her mind still a little foggy, and mildly recognised Saffyre. She was in Jess’s league – an amazing theif and assassin by anyone’s standards – her golden blonde hair was streaked with red, brown and blonde flowed down to her waist; and her eyes were a kaleidoscope of colour – constantly changing depending on the lighting. She wore rough leathers, and a soft-purple hooded-cape rested on her shoulders. She had daggers in her thick brown belt, a crossbow over her shoulder, and a quiver filled with feather-tipped arrows.

Another one that agrees with my dress sense! Dammit, where have these people been all my life?

 

Next was someone who could only be described as a mad scientist. She had brown eyes and chppoy brown hair that attempted to stick out in every direction. The name on her white lab-coat read: Imaginary Pictures. She wore glasses and faded jeans; and a mischeivious smile played on her face. Beside her was a blonde girl, who seemed to be taking on an extreme goth look - Nina. Her hair was messy, a red skunk-streak running right across the middle of her head, and her pale skin looked all the more deathly with the heavy eyeliner and black lip-gloss. She wore a fashionable, black leather jacket. Rogue smirked at her. She loved jackets like that. Nina was a master theif, and anyone who cared about their belongings knew it.

 

And last, but anything but least, was Sakura. Rogue knew Sakura. She’d joined the mercenaries, but doubled as an assassin and a thief... tripled, that would be a better word. Anyway, she looked typically Puerto Rican – dark and somewhat wavy hair, dark eyes, and olive skin. She wore a black kimono, only reaching mid-thigh, and high-heeled black boots that reached mid-thigh also.

...Okay, so not my dress-sense; but my kind of person anywho.

Sakura gave new meaning to the term ‘killing machine’ [well, after Vesp, but he’s gone now, sadly] she had daggers and throwing knives concealed in her boots. Her favourite method of kill was using sharp needles to puncture the back of the neck. She wore sunglasses almost all the time, but now she was relaxed within the Bureau.

 

“Will you sit down now?” said Abbess Britney. She was wearing a red habit today.

“It’s Woodstock in here,” said Rogue, “Am I missing something?”

“These are the member of the Bureau now. Especially after Vesp and Eclecticboy died.”

“Why don’t I know half of these people?”

“Because you were sick and a non-English-speaking Khadir had to take your place!”

“Ah, that’s why he looked so traumatised. What did you guys do to him?”

The Abbess waved away the irrelevant remark, “He really needs to learn some English.”

“You lot need to learn Arabic.”

“Rogue, there’s no need to get defensive–”

“We live in the middle of Syria.”

 

Britney looked all flustered, “Will you please sit down?”

Rogue groaned.

“What is it now?”

“It’s five in the morning!”

“So?”

“It’s Sunday!”

So?”

“I didn’t even wake up this early for school!”

Hollywood smacked her forehead.

“Don’t be like that,” said Rogue, taking a seat reluctantly, “I just drove 21 miles from the barracks to here, with a huge migraine, and I don’t even have a license to drive!”

Jess snickered, “How did you manage that?”

Rogue shrugged, “Not too sure. There isn’t much to crash into in the desert and,” Rogue faced the Abbess, “no-one’s up this early.”

“Why do you have a migraine?” asked Sakura.

“The guys were chugging beer last night.”

“They said you don’t drink…”

“I don’t,” said Rogue, “But I like watching. Besides, the fights that break out afterwards are hilarious.”

 

“Can we get back to the topic please?” asked Lia, with a light cough.

Rogue leaned back in her seat, mild distaste on her face, and listened.

“We’ve been beaten three times this month, by King Simon of Cow’ell,” said the Abbess.

“We were not beaten,” said Rogue.

Fine, nearly beaten, then. But three times. In a single month! It’s awful, and we can’t afford to take another hit.”

“Is the apostrophe is Cow’ell supposed to replace an ‘h’?”

“Rogue!”

“What? It was an honest question! I’d want to know if there was a Cow’eaven!”

Britney sighed in frustration, “Why?”

“Because cows deserve a heaven.”

“Rogue, please!”

“Fine, fine! It’s too early in the morning to be serious, but okay.”

 

“We need a new plan,” said Abbess Britney, “That fake Zayn Malik you killed, Rogue, brought back all sorts of WD members from so many different dimensions.”

“Easy,” said Sakura, “We should bring their dimensional equals here.”

“Sakura… we don’t know where they came from,” said Emmie.

“There’s a way to find out,” said Rogue.

They all looked at her.

“Fake Zayn mentioned ‘Dimensional Footprints’. Vesp cleaned up his, but I doubt Sir Styles-a-Lot and his crew cleaned up theirs. We could get our Dimensional Shunting home-girl to look them up.”

They all looked at Jess.

 

She raised up her hands, surprised, “I can’t do that!”

“Why not?” asked Enya.

“Because… it breaks the Code of the Shunter. We’re not meant to track each others Footprints. Ever.”

Rogue sat up, “This is an issue of necessity–”

“Even in necessity, Rogue.”

“Jess, the whole world is at stake here,” Rogue stood up, “With the amount of Zayn’s and Louis’s… scratch that, not Louis’s; Liam’s and Niall’s, maybe they could even over-throw Smith!” Rogue put a hand under Jess’s chin, “Smith’s reign is tyrannical, but it’s not apocalyptic. Simon’s…” she pointed at her bandaged forehead, “I got kicked in the head by a horse. You don’t get more apocalyptic than that.”

 

“You wouldn’t have, if you’d shot it down,” said Myra, tersely.

“Shoot down a horse? That’s cruel. The horse didn’t do anything wrong.”

“Well, with that mentality, you’re going to get more horse-shoe-shaped bruises on your head.”

“Thank you, Mrs. Optimism. Where’s Mr. Optimism, by the way?”

“He’s on a mission to assassinate someone important,” she said, “I can’t remember the name of the individual, but Richard said he was a VIP.”

“Back on the topic,” said Abbess Britney, turning to Jess, “You understand how important this is?”

Jess stared at them all for a moment, and then gulped, nodding slowly, “I… I’ll track the Footprints. And find the location.” She got up and walked off towards the Hub Room, where the Pieces of Eden were kept.

 

“Now to decide who goes,” said Abbess Britney.

“You can count me out,” said Rogue.

They all stared at her again.

“What?” said Enya.

“Dimension skipping requires taking a pill for those who aren’t Shunters,” said Rogue, “I can’t swallow pills.”

Myra slapped her hands down on the table, “I’ve seen you swallow peanuts whole! Shell and all!”

“They aren’t pills.”

“They’re bigger than pills!”

Rogue sat down slowly, leaning back, “Go figure.”

Myra scowled, “Don’t tell me you’re afraid.”

“I kicked a shrinks butt, I don’t take pills, I hate doctors; make the connection, kid.”

“But…” Myra looked confused.

“It’s a weakness.”

 

“But the Blue and Red Pill aren’t medical,” commented Sakura.

Rogue considered this, “Fair enough, but who’s going to look out for my boys?”

“The mercenaries can take care of themselves!” said Myra.

Rogue laughed, “You’re kidding, right?”

“Fine, I’ll look out for them. And I’ll feed that damned Nazgul you love so much.”

“Squishy likes carrots. Don’t give him too much. Makes him sick.”

“So, you’re in then?” asked Emmie.

“Alright, yes I’m in,” Rogue looked a little peeved, “Who else is in?”

“I’ll go,” said Abbess Britney, “And I nominate Lia and Emmie too.”

“What?” said Lia.

“What?” said Emmie.

“What, what?” said Britney, “You two are the brains, and you both have a decent level of training in fighting. Why not? We need all the muscle we can get here in Masyaf.”

“And we don’t count as muscle?” muttered Lia.

 

Jess wandered in, a faraway look in her eyes.

“There are four destinations,” she held out her hand; showing two Blue Pills and two Red Pills, “The first is called ‘Codename: Fanfics’,” she threw a Blue Pill to Lia, “The next two are called ‘The Fight for the Movellas Throne’ and ‘Codename: Plagarists’,” she threw the second Blue Pill to Britney, “The next destination is distributed throughout history,” she threw a Red Pill to Emmie, “And the final destinations are located in previous Brotherhood strongholds in history,” Jess threw the last Red Pill to Rogue. She held up the Apple of Eden, “Take the Pills simultaneously, and let’s get those dimensional equals here. When you find all the equals, a sign will appear. You will recognise it. You will need to take a Time or  Dimension Leap to return here. Do you understand?”

 

The four looked at each other and then did as they were told.

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