The Three Hammers

I don't even know I'm just practising


1. Fight

Jasper stepped off the plane, landing on the sodden mud below. People rushed past him, some screaming in horror, some completely silent with tears streaming from their eyes. Ahead of him stood Death, encapsulated in a choking purple mist, his face hidden by that skull-like mask. But Jasper knew... Jasper knew the smirk that hid from the crowd. 
"Jasper, what are you doing? Get on the plane!" Scarlett screamed from behind him, her top half hanging out of the open doors, the sniper rifle tossed carelessly to her side. Things were always bad when Scarlett couldn't rely on her aim anymore.
"This plane won't leave the ground while he's here, we both know it!" Jasper shouted, without turning. If he took his attention away from Death for even a second, he knew the massacre would begin. This is the game Death played, and Jasper knew he was going to lose.
But he could at least even the stakes for his friends.
"Jasper, we don't have time for this! He'll kill you in a second and then he'll finish us off, get on the plane and lets go!" Scarlett started to cry. Losing her husband and her best friend in such a short amount of time would destroy her, but she was strong, she would keep fighting. Jasper turned to look at her, the last few people having climbed onto the plane. He could feel Death's gaze on his back, and though he had no skin, he could feel goosebumps rising on his body. He looked at Scarlett, staring into those green eyes, telling her how much he loved her without words escaping. She stared back, looking utterly incredulous. He turned away, looking back at the looming figure of what was once his mentor, but had now been corrupted. The purple vapor disappeared, and Death's feet touched the ground, the most graceful landing Jasper had seen. Jasper turned his head, looking at the pilot, and gave him the signal to leave. As the plane rose, Jasper heard Scarlett shouting at him. No doubt she was trying to clamber from the plane, the rest of the squad holding her back. Jasper stared once again at his demise, and raised two fingers over his shoulder, knowing Scarlett would see it. Knowing she would understand. 
"Arkston, buddy. I really didn't want it to come down to this, but I'm going to have to kick your ass." Jasper shouted, stepping forward slowly. There was a lot of ground between them, and he knew if he didn't cover it as quickly as possible, Death would tear him to shreds. 
"Arkston? Oh no, Arkston isn't here, boy. I have taken over completely. He is nothing more than a whisper in my subconscious, and soon he won't even be that. Your time is up. Lay down your weapon, and maybe I'll make this painless." Death growled. His voice was deep, with no emotion to speak of. He stayed entirely still, the scythe slung across his back. Jasper still advanced slowly, one foot in front of the other, watching for any sign of attack. The plane was now a distant whine, but it still wasn't far enough. 
"I know my friend is still in there, you great ugly bastard. Look at you, you're wearing his coat, you're in his body. The only difference in you is my friend has integrity, he has honor. He has done some questionable things, but he sought for forgiveness, and he found it."
"Your friend was a criminal, a thief and a murderer. I am no different-" Death began, but Jasper shouted.
"I'm not finished, asshole!" Jasper shouted, stopping his slow advance. He knew he was letting his anger get the best of him, but at this point, he was still going to die, it didn't really matter. "For all I care, you're a parasite that has taken over my friend, and I'm going to rid him of you as soon as I possibly can. I'll die here, yeah. I've been ready to die for a little while now, but they'll stop you. They'll find your weakness and they'll use it to fuck you up." Jasper said. He was seething, all he could see was red. He itched to shift, but he didn't, not yet. He was going to wait for the opportunity, he wouldn't mess it up this time.
He'd made enough mistakes for a lifetime.
Probably loads of other life times too. 
"So naive, so ignorant. Do you not understand? I am the living embodiment of Death. Salem and Maelstrom? They are nothing but ants in a universe I created! Some view this as arrogance, but I know it to be true. So throw your worst at me, and watch me flatten you like the insect that you are!" Death shouted, and Jasper saw his chance. In his anger, Death had moved his arms, and his torso was revealed. Jasper shifted, the purple armor growing over his bones, his feet growing heavier, making deeper impacts in the ground as he ran. He grabbed the sword that grew from his back, and used it to slash through Death's armor. Sliding across the wet ground, the Eldritch Knight stood tall and proud, his glowing eyes illuminating the darkening air purple. Death stood with a slash through his chest, and Jasper saw the purple vapor rising into the air. Yet he turned, as if uninjured. 
"I grow impatient with you, boy. This is great power, but mine is greater. I will give you this one final chance, to bow down, to let me rule over you like the God that I am, or this place will become your grave." Death's torso fixed itself as he spoke, the mist solidifying in his wounds. Death reached his arm over his shoulder, to grab the handle of the scythe. Jasper saw the slice coming, and dodged as the metal blade pierced the ground where he had just been. A tiny slice of armor fell from the Eldritch Knight armor, a purple light emanating from inside. Jasper turned, kicking from a tree and splintering it in the process. He flipped, looking down at Death and bringing his sword in an arc, but Death blocked the move with his scythe as if the sword were nothing, and span, the handle hitting Jasper square in the stomach and throwing him away. Rain began to pound the mud as Jasper stood, the dark illuminated only by their glowing purple bodies. 
"Arkston, please. Don't do this. If you kill me, there is no going back. You can beat him, he isn't that strong, not as strong as you." Jasper shouted, having to dodge the strike of the scythe again, landing a few feet to the left. His feet slipped in the slick mud, and he stumbled, only just managing to manoeuvre his body out of the way of the onslaught. "Arkston Wolff, answer me!" Jasper screamed, but now the scythe was gone, and instead Jasper stared down the line of an energy blade. Death stood silent, pointing the blade straight into Jasper's face. The Eldritch armor wouldn't protect him from that much energy.
"Arkston, you can hear me. You're beating him. Think of Scarlett, if you lose to this guy, Scarlett will die. I will die. Everyone you care about, everyone you know will die." Jasper pleaded, but Death just stood, immobile, saying nothing. The purple vapor surrounding him was disappearing, and Jasper suddenly had hope.
"Arkston, fight this. Come on, it's me. I can take you to Scarlett, this will all be over." Jasper began to move towards Death, reaching his hand out to touch his friend. Within the blink of an eye, Jasper was lifted off the ground, the energy blade stuck where his heart would have been, Death staring up at him.
"Sentimentality loses, every single time." He growled, before dropping Jasper to the ground. The Eldritch Knight armor began to recede, slowly, as Jasper's tiny form shook on the ground.
"If your friends are watching this, I want them to listen closely. There is no end to me, I cannot die. Your only chance, as I have stated, is to lay down your arms and hope I choose to spare you. If you do not comply... well... let me use him as an example." Death lifted his boot above Jasper's head, and brought it down with a sickening crunch. A mist rose into the air before disappearing, and little scraps of Jasper's skull rose into the air, flying in different directions. Death removed his foot from the remains of the skeleton, purple mist once again enveloping his body.
"This is your final warning." He said, before disappearing entirely. 

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