Control Alt Corruption by J.F. Klyne

corruption75x99Vote at the end of this episode!

In the previous episode, the group traveled to a local sporting goods store to stock up on supplies to fight Pallas. There, they fell into a trap set by one of Pallas’ minions, the Dead Knight. A magical barrier will keep them there unless one of them decides to fight the knight one-on-one. Readers voted that Eric Winters would take up that cause.

Episode 13

“I’ll do it,” Eric Winters steps forward, brandishing his hatchet.

When he approaches the Dead Knight, the archaic text closes around just the two of them. The others are set free, but they do not leave just yet. They move toward their friend, only to be bounced back by the barrier still in place. Darrel reaches for his best friend, only to be shocked. He reels his hand away, the tips of his fingers singed.

“Guys, it’s okay,” Eric turns to them with a weak smile. “I’ll be fine. Once I’m done with this guy, I’ll catch up.”

“Be safe,” Darrel requests as he turns his back on his friend.

Reluctantly the group abandons him to fight the bone-armored knight. Both ready themselves, as the runes that keep them bound vanish. They are fighters ready to lay down their lives for the sake of others. The Dead Knight draws his great sword from the ground, tossing its weight over his shoulder. Eric keeps his hatchet prepared, but it looks miniscule compared to his size. He even stands a foot or two taller than the undead soldier. Yet compared to his warrior version in the game, he is not quite as fearsome.

Bones rattle, as the Dead Knight makes the first move. He swings his great sword with ease. The blade of bone meets the metal of the hatchet, and does nothing to slow down the soldier’s assault. The force of the blow bats Eric into the wall. Over his head, his health bar takes a dip, reducing by five-percent.

Getting back up, he throws his weapon to counterattack. The sharp blade sails through the air, digging deep into the Dead Knight’s shoulder plate. Eric grins when he sees the hit, but it soon fades when the armored soldier’s health does not diminish. His opponent simply wretches the axe free from his armor, and tosses it aside.

With moments gone from the opponent, the Dead Knight strikes again. Eric is helpless as the great sword meets his flesh. The bone sword is not sharp enough to rip through him, yet it is heavy enough to slam the poor boy onto the ground. Pinned under the weapon, he must watch as his own life force disappears. The health bar reaches the red, suffering monstrous damage from that last attack.

Reigning up his weapon, the Dead Knight stands over the weakened warrior. His sword held high, ready to plunge into Eric’s chest. Bones rattle again, sounding like chattering teeth as he tightens the grip. Thrusting the weapon down, he …

“Hold,” a voice commands the Dead Knight, stopping him.

The tip of the sword grazes Eric’s chest, poking into his shirt. Though he is safe, for a moment, he holds his breath, worried that his chest might puncture into the sword if he were to exhale. Looking around, he finds the man who orders the Dead Knight, a familiar face that approaches the soldier. The young man he recognizes from gym, Troy Grimm. Dead red eyes gaze down at him. Behind the student hovers a ghastly image, wroth with bones as black as the abyss. A three-faced skull looks hungrily at Eric. The gaze of Pallas seems to sear into his soul.

“You are the great warrior that fought me?” Troy sneers, squatting beside Eric to get a better look. “You are disappointing, a pitifully pathetic human.” Eric only answers with silence. “It is not that your body is weak, only your mind.” A fanged grin reaches the undead boy’s face. “I can offer you power, if you swear loyalty to me. Of course, if you were to refuse I can still make use of your corpse. Either way you will be subservient, only the former you will still live. So what’s your decision, Eric Winters…or should I say…Boyd Bersker?” Vote below on what will happen next or if reading in email click Take our Poll.

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