Chase the Killers

 

“Are you sure those were the people that attempted to kill you?” Felix asked with a serious expression on his face.

 

“Yes Felix,” Lakshman said with a nod.

 

“Mmm…”

 

Felix was thinking through as Lakshman described his attacke. There were two of them with similar appearances. They were tall with green hair, three pointy horns on their heads like crowns and red eyes.

 

From the level of description of them, Felix knew who they were. Even so, he was not sure whether to believe it was them or not.

 

Seeing the concerned expression on his face, Ondine asked “Is something wrong, Felix?”

 

“Ah? Oh… no…” Felix said hesitantly, distracted by her question. “I’m just thinking about Lakshman’s attackers.”

 

“Do you know them?!” Ondine asked quickly and killing intent started emanating from her. “Do you know the bastards that tried to kill master?!”

 

“Yes, but that can’t be,” Felix said and he suddenly became frustrated. “They shouldn’t even be here!”

 

“Who is it?!” Ondine asked as she looked seriously at him. “I demand an answer, Felix!”

 

“Okay, okay,” he said and sighed. “It’s one of the Demon clans. To be more precise, I think it’s the Serprad clan.”

 

Lakshman blinked in confusion before saying “The… what clan?”

 

“The Serprad Demon clan,” Felix said as he turned to face Lakshman. “They are a warrior clan within the Demon race and are very strong fighters.”

 

“By ‘Serprad Demon clan’, do you mean they are a clan similar to the Manjuvad Demon clan Miss Sumara belongs to?” Lakshman asked in surprise.

 

“Yes,” Felix said with a nod and continued to say “but there is an essential difference between the Serprad and Manjuvad clans.”

 

“What would that be?”

 

“The Manjuvad clan is a peaceful Demon clan and the clansmen spend their time farming or doing simple things for a living. They are nothing like the ferocious demons from stories and folklore,” Felix said as he explained to Lakshman.

 

“Farming?” Lakshman asked in surprise. “If they spend time farming, why is Miss Sumara a magician?”

 

Felix smiled and said “Sumara is one of those exceptions. You see, the Manjuvad may have small bodies, but they possess high aptitude for magic. However, they tend to keep to themselves because of the great discrimination they suffered during the many wars waged between races.”

 

He suddenly wore a bitter face as he finished. It seemed he was unhappy about the past between the wars and their consequences. Lakshman, on the other hand, was brimming with happiness. Felix was surprised to see this, but he remembered suddenly who his parents were.

 

“Miss Sumara really is strong at magic,” Lakshman said in awe as his respect for her increased.

 

Felix smiled at Lakshman’s sheer delight. He was pleased to see Indra and Lakshmi, Lakshman’s parents, raised him to not discriminate the other races. Then he realised why he felt this strange closeness between him and Sumara.

 

“She is strong! So, be sure to treat her with respect. Okay?” Felix said with a smile.

 

“Yes!” Lakshman exclaimed brightly and he smiled back.

 

Felix nodded and continued with his explanation.

 

“Well, unlike the peaceful Manjuvad clan, the Serprad clan is a warrior clan. All members of the clan are full of strong warriors bred for battle.”

 

“Eh? They are a warrior clan?” Lakshman said in surprise. “So… what do they do? Fight?”

 

“Yes. They constantly engage in fighting amongst themselves or others,” Felix said with narrowed eyes. “Most of them serve the Demon Kingdom, but there are others who get thrill out of fighting for the sheer pleasure of fighting itself.”

 

“S-So… the ones that attacked me… what category would they fall under?” Lakshman asked nervously.

 

Felix shook his head uncertainly and said “I’m uncertain.”

 

“Well, whatever they are, they tried to kill master! They must pay dearly for that!” Ondine exclaimed angrily.

 

They turned and saw Ondine was looking very angry and the killing intent emanating from her intensified. Startled to see her so angry, Lakshman attempted to calm her down.

 

“Calm down Ondine,” he said, but she suddenly glared at him and he saw the fury in her eyes.

 

“How can I be calm at a time like this?!” she exclaimed and he winced. “You were almost killed by bastards who are escaping while we sit here doing absolutely nothing, but talk about pointless things!!”

 

“So, you want to take revenge,” Felix said as he eyed her coolly.

 

“Yes!” Ondine said firmly.

 

“Okay… but do you know who they are?”

 

“They are that blood thirsty Serprad Demon clan! You said that yourself, remember?!”

 

“And…? Do you know where they are? As in, do you know where they are right this instance?”

 

“What?” Ondine asked, taken aback by his question.

 

“I am asking you, do you know where they are right now?” Felix asked patiently.

 

“Um… No…” Ondine said hesitantly.

 

“So… do you know the direction they were headed?”

 

“… No.”

 

“And…? Do you have any idea where you should start to look for them?” he asked before saying sternly “Please don’t say Demon Continent because I will seriously hit you if you say it!”

 

Ondine made a troubled face and was struggling to find any answer to his questions.

 

“I-I don’t know,” she finally said after a while.

 

“Ha! You don’t know where they are, which way they went or where to start looking for them. So, tell me, what hope do you have of venting your revenge on them?” he said mockingly.

 

In defeat, she hung her head and her shoulders slumped. The killing aura vanished and was replaced by an air of sadness. Lakshman was amazed at how easily Felix handled her and made a mental note to learn to do that as well.

 

“Now, let’s think this through,” Felix said calmly with a small smile. He turned to Lakshman and asked “Lakshman, I don’t mean to be rude, but I need you to remember what happened after they stabbed you. Can you remember anything at all?”

 

“Well…” Lakshman hesitated as he tried to remember the horrible events. It was unpleasant and apparently it made apparent on his face.

 

“You don’t have to force yourself to remember if it is that unpleasant,” Felix said in an understanding voice. “I can always sense them out, but it will take time.”

 

“No, no,” Lakshman said as he waved his hands in protest. “I’m trying to remember, but… I was very weak at that time. You know… being stabbed and all.”

 

“No, no, it’s fine,” Felix said with a smile. “Any small thing that you remember is handy.”

 

“S-Sure!”

 

Lakshman closed his eyes and attempted to remember the events after getting stabbed. It was vague as, by then, he was feeling weak and drained. A few seconds later, he finally remembered and he opened before he looked at Felix.

 

“I think I remember t them headed off in… that direction,” he said and he pointed in the direction with his finger. “They were chasing after that Two-Headed Cerberus.”

 

“Wait, what?” Ondine said, taken aback by his words. “Say that again master? I feel like I misheard you for a second there.”

 

“Okay. Those two Serprad clansmen chased after the Two-Headed Cerberus right after attacking me.”

 

“What?” she said incredulously. “What’s a Two-Headed Cerberus monster doing way out here? I thought they aren’t in the forest anymore.”

 

“I thought the same thing,” Lakshman said with a nod of his head, “but it appeared right before me earlier.”

 

“It didn’t attack you?” Ondine asked with a puzzled expression on her face.

 

“Strangely, no. It just ignored me and went off in that direction.”

 

“Odd…” Ondine muttered as she pondered about these events.

 

Just then, Felix clapped his hands together and drew their attention towards him.

 

“Okay then. I’ve decided.”

 

“You have?” Ondine asked.

 

“Oh yes,” he said with a nod of his head. “I’ve decided to speak with the Water Spirits later. Right now, let’s deal with these Serprad Demons first!”

 

“That’s great!” Ondine said enthusiastically and she jumped to her feet in an instant.

 

“Is it really that important to chase after them just because of me?” Lakshman asked hesitantly as he slowly rose to his feet.

 

“It is very important to punish them, master!” Ondine said adamantly with a fire in her eyes.

 

“Yes, yes, but it’s much more than that,” Felix said, cutting across her. “I fear they will also attack everyone else they come across.”

 

“Is it that serious?” Lakshman asked nervously and Felix nodded his head gravely.

 

“It is,” he said seriously. “I don’t think you are aware of the food the Serprad eat, do you?”

 

“What they eat?” Lakshman said in surprise. Then he shook his head and said “No, I don’t.”

 

“They eat meat,” Felix said as he rose to his feet. “They eat the meat of monsters from the wilderness and dungeons.”

 

“Oh,” Lakshman said with a blink of his eyes.

 

“Meat of monsters does satisfy them, but their favourite meat is something else.”

 

“They have a favourite meat?” Lakshman asked looking surprised. When Felix nodded wordlessly, he asked “So… What is it?”

 

For some reason Felix hesitated in answering. For a few seconds, he looked troubled as he avoided answering. Finally, as if he made up his mind, he looked back at Lakshman and answered.

 

“Human flesh.”

 

“H-Human flesh?!” Lakshman exclaimed in shock.

 

“That’s right,” Felix said with a nod of his head in distaste. “To them eating human flesh is a wondrous feeling. Back in the days of war, they ate the flesh of human dead bodies and came to love its taste.”

 

“Eh…!” Lakshman said with wide eyes, looking shocked. “B-But… they… left me here without… you know…”

 

“Yes, it is strange that they left you after merely stabbing you,” Felix said with a concerned expression on his face. “It almost as if that Two-Headed Cerberus monster mattered more.”

 

They remained in silence as they digested his words. A few seconds later, Ondine scratched her head and broke the silence in frustration.

 

“Whatever!” she exclaimed and they looked at her in surprise. “Let’s go already!”

 

“Ondine?” Lakshman said in surprise.

 

“I don’t care what their reasons were for being here or attacking master. However, it looks like they are nothing, but trouble!” she said angrily as she faced them. “If what Felix said is true, then I won’t let them do the same thing like they did to master!”

 

“Ondine,” Lakshman said and he looked at her affectionately and Ondine suddenly became flustered by his expression.

 

Felix nodded his head at her words and smiled as he said “Alright then! Let’s stop wasting time here and get going!”

 

“Yeah!” Lakshman and Ondine said together.

 

Lakshman and Ondine began to walk in the direction that Lakshman pointed at earlier. Suddenly, they were called back by Felix.

 

“What are you guys doing?”

 

“You know, we‘re going after them,” Ondine said as she pointed in the direction with her hand.

 

“By walking?” Felix asked with an eye brow raised. “You think you can catch up with them by walking?”

 
“Then, what do you suggest?”

 

“Come here and grab my shoulders.”

 

“Huh?”

 

“Just do it!”

 

“O-Okay…”

 

With perplexed expressions on their faces, Lakshman and Ondine walked back to Felix. Felix lowered slightly to allow for Lakshman to grab his shoulder while Ondine grabbed the other shoulder.

 

“Grip my shoulders firmly!” Felix said firmly. “Don’t worry if your grip might hurt me, but it’s very important for you to grip me tightly!”

 

“O-Okay,” they said together and gripped him tightly.

 

“Are you ready then?” he asked with a strange smile on his face.

 

“I suppose we are as ready as we can ever be,” Lakshman said in reply.

 

Ondine looked at him with an eye brow raised as she said “Master… a simple yes would have sufficed.”

 

“Oh… sorry,” Lakshman said apologetically. “I guess I’m a bit excited.”

 

“I understand master,” Ondine said and she suddenly smiled. “I’m also excited to bring the pain down on them brutes!”

 

Lakshman laughed half-heatedly. His excitement was just from the imminent battle for a just cause, but Ondine’s was entirely different. She simply wanted to take revenge on them for attacking Lakshman. Knowing this, all he could do was laugh.

 

“Alright, here we go!” Felix said. His eyes suddenly turned red and he shouted “Phoenix Flash!”

 

A surge of energy emanated all around them and the air became still for a moment. Then Felix moved slightly forward in a ready position. Then he kicked off the ground and launched into the air.

 

“Wha?!” Lakshman exclaimed, but his voice was drowned by the howling wind.

 

They were suddenly moving so fast, Lakshman struggled to hold his grip on Felix’s shoulder. He couldn’t keep his eyes fully open as the speed of the wind caused his eyes to hurt. Then he heard voices shouting through the howling wind.

 

“Felix!” Ondine bellowed. “We’re going too fast!”

 

“That’s the point!” Felix yelled as he sailed over grass and leaves.

 

Just then, they noticed several trees were in front of them. Felix smile widened as he headed straight towards the tree. Ondine, however, panicked.

 

“We’re going to crash!”

 

“We’ll be fine!” Felix shouted reassuringly. “So, don’t let go unless you want to die!”

 

Sensing Ondine’s feelings, he added “I’m serious! If you let go, you really will die at this speed!”

 

“O-Okay!” she bellowed in reply.

 

Lakshman opened his eyes and suddenly found that he was about to hit the trees joined together. He turned his head and saw Ondine stared at them. Then she quickly closed her eyes and began the move her mutter as if she was praying.

 

What happened next took Lakshman by surprise. One moment the trees were in front of them. The next, they were passing right through them. Lakshman could not believe his eyes as they passed right through the trees. He looked back, but the trees already disappeared.

 

“Alright, we’re almost there!” Felix yelled excitedly.

 

Lakshman closed his eyes and gripped Felix tighter than every as they sailed through the forest and headed in the direction of the Serprad clansmen.

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