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Flinn Miles

IV

Loyalty or Safety?

"Alright." I came to the main meeting place in the plane. I spread out the map I had in my hands on the table. "The nearest Liquid Fire base is here." I said pointing to the top image of the building on the map.

"That thing is a skyscraper!" Nathan exclaimed. "How exactly are we supposed to inflitrate that, or even find the girls?"

"We can crash into the building using the plane." Seth suggested, but shrugged after seeing us stare at him. "It's just a suggestion."

"I'd rather not be a bloodstain on the building when attempting a rescue mission." Nathan said.

"The front door is open you know." I stated.

"And you want to walk into a building probably filled with armed guards? Not only that, there are probably also other beings like monsters and other rogue demigods." Seth countered. "And you thought my idea was crazy."

"I'm just saying that the more time we send here thinking of a plan of attack, the longer and harder it would be to rescue the girls." I said.

"So your suggesting pure brute strength? I thought you were a strategist?" Seth replied.

"Well." I said rolling up the map. "Sometimes a piece of paper can't be used to open a door." I grabbed my Rapier strapped it onto my weapon belt. "Come on. Are we going to save the girls or not?"

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The Liquid Fire base looked normal enough. It looked like a normal office building, like one you would find at home. Home being New York. It seemed out of place among the the buildings of London, as if someone had just plucked a skyscraper off the cement floor of New York and planted it in London.

We walked into the building through the front door. "Act casual." Nathan said immediately.

"And I was planning to act crazy and shoot everyone in here. So much for my plans." I replied.

"Both of you shut up. It's time to act like normal." Seth, who was at the front, hissed.

We looked normal because of the mist, our weapons were disguised as camera equipment. The plan was to present ourselves as reporters who seemingly want to know about the new company "Liquid Fire" and how they had risen to fame. So far it was working.

Above the receptionist was a giant banner, a blue drop of fire in a red backround, the banner was trimmed with gold. So much for the building being normal. Unfortunately, being too distracted by the banner, I didn't notice the large man bump into me.

The large man immediately turned around, sniffing the air. "Demigod!" He shouted, I recognised his features. A Laistrygonian giant. Ugh, "Canadians".

"Welp. So much for being subtle." I took out the lighter in my pocket and created a spark. Manipulating the heat, I burned the air. Not enough to burn, but enough to disorientate most people. It worked, humans and monsters alike covered their faces.

"Go! Go!" Seth shouted. We started running towards the elevators to where the offices were. Nate already had his bow drawn, he pulled the bowstring and let the arrow fly. The arrow impaled itself in the forehead of a distant Giant.

Seth was infront, swinging his sword, making quick work of anybody in our way. I paused and turned back. I made a spark with the lighter again, I burned the group of Empousa that had been following us. Sparing the mortals behind them.

We eventually came to a fork in the road. "Which way?" Nate asked, pulling the bowstring and letting another arrow fly. The sound of it connecting with flesh followed.

"Split up. If you find them, get out. Then light the signal flare, that'll be the signal for us to leave." Seth said.

"And if we get caught?" I asked.

"Don't get caught." Seth said. It was a simple order but with a much more sinister meaning. We were going to leave here alive, or not at all. Our fist connected, a gesture of goodbye, before we went our seperate ways.

The route I chose lead to a staircase. "Ah come on." I complained. I began climbing them, checking on all the doors. They were all locked. When I finally reached a door that was open, I had probably climbed up 40 flights of stairs and was already panting, not to mention, tired. I opened the door.

"Hey!" I heard a voice shout. I turned to see four armed mortals, their gun-barrels pointed at me. I saw the forearm muscles of the man in front began to contract, his finger on the trigger. Which meant only one thing.

I rushed forward. My battle-instincts prevailing over any other thoughts I had. I raised my sword and cut off the gun-barrel of the gun. I ducked as the gun fired. Unprepared for the knockback and still surprise of my attack, he stepped back and tripped, knocking his head against the wall.

Another man aimed his rifle at me. I side-stepped and grabbed the gun, kicked him in the chest and swung the butt of the rifle at him, knocking him out. The third man attacked me, swung his gun like a club. I dodged and aimed the rifle, at him and shot him in the shoulder. I proceeded to slam the hilt of my sword into his forehead. He crumpled and fell to the floor.

The last man had tried to run away, but I stepped on his foot to prevent him from escaping. I swung my sword, aimed for his neck..

..When I stopped. I was going to kill him. I was actually planning on killing him. I faltered for a while, but quickly slamming the hilt of sword into his chin, sending him to dreamland.

I ran down into the corridor, still high on the Adrenalin the battle. It made me forget all about the previous fatigue of climbing up the staircase. I slung the rifle I took from the man and slung it over my shoulder. It was a bolt-action rifle, pretty outdated despite Liquid Fire's tech. I still kept it though, might prove useful later.

I turned to a corridor, but stopped and hid in the corner. The corridor was full of armed men. Somehow I knew that the girls were being kept in the room at the far end of the corridor.

However, there were to many guards and the effects of the adrenalin was slowly wearing off. The fatigue coming back. I eyed the corridor, nothing to help. Except for the red pipe that was labeled "Hydrogen." An idea began to form in my mind.

I drew my sword, poised to throw. I ran across from one corner to the other corner and threw the sword. It cut clean through the mundane mortal steel, unleashing the gas it was meant to contain. The guards, dazed, began to wander what was doing on. I made a flame using the lighter, modeled it in my palm, a fireball. I threw it into the enclosed space of hydrogen filled corridor. The explosion ensured.

I walked into the corridor. The guards laid unconscious on the floor. I had controlled the explosion, so as to not kill anyone. I glanced at where I threw my sword. Now it was nothing more than some liquid metal that was beginning to cover the cut I made on the pipe. Okay, maybe a bit overkill. At least there wasn't going to be anymore explosions, unless of course celestial bronze reacted with hydrogen.

I walked toward the door the guards were hiding. Opened it and headed inside. I guess Tyche was pretty happy with me today, because inside it was Brook and Silena. Silena's eyes lit up when she saw me but Brook gave me a stare that said What took you so long?

"Honey, I'm home!" I exclaimed and picked began to work on the ropes binding them. I pulled off the tape covering their mouths and undid Brook's bonds. "Took you long enough."

"Hey. I was busy sight-seeing. London, beautiful city you know?" I said as I undid Silena's bonds.

"Well. You should've sight-seen faster." Brook said rubbing her wrists, where he ropes had bind her.

"Come on let's go." I said. Motioning towards the door. We began walking towards the door when I heard it. The distinct sound of wings cutting through the air, the sound of an eagle's screech. And that's when the wall beside me exploded.

My vision was blurry, for a moment, all my sensed were shut down. When I slowly came to, I tried getting my bearings. I looked up to see the face and wings of a large eagle, but it's body was of a Lion. A Gryphon.

It pinned me down using his claws, it's bloody beak facing me. It's claws digging into my arms and his beak pressed into my cheek.

Brook and Silena were fighting a figure sitting on the creature. His eyes were dark, empty voids and his hair, brown, but dark enough to be black. He sat proud, his face emotionless mask. He paid nearly no attention to the girls. He waved his hands at the girls, and an invisible wall of force hit them and they went flying.

He looked down at me from his mount, my hearing still wasn't working but I read his lips. Kill him. He said. The Gryphon raised it's beak ready to bring it down. Helpless, I watched as it tried was ready to kill me.

Silena was suddenly beside him. By the way she was standing she was probably shouting at him. The rider of the Gryphon stopped, so did the Gryphon. The rider was listening to her words, as if considering what she was saying.

My senses were finally coming back to me, my sight was starting to clear and my hearing was coming back. Just enough time to hear him say, using his voice that was like a blade scrapping across stone, "A life for a life." The Gryphon got off me and grabbed Silena with it's claws. Her eyes looked at me on last time, her gaze sad and apologising. As if trying to say story for sarcrificing herself.

The Gryphon then ran towards the hole it made in the wall, it spread his wings and flew. I quickly got on my feet, my battle instincts and adreanalin prevailing over any fear or second thoughts I had. I started running, my body moving against my will. Two decades of training kept me running, towards the hole. This was it, my last chance. To try to save Silena or stay here where it was safe. I had to choose. Loyalty or safety?

....I reached the edge and jumped.

I realised two things, first, I had just jumped off a building. Second, I had really miscalculated on the distance. The gryphon was far away, too far for me to catch it. Third, I was falling to my death.

Adrealin was still at work, so the panic hasn't stepped in yet. I noticed a vague white figure below me, a Pegasus! Maybe there is a way...too late to change my mind. I pulled my arms and legs in, propelling me forward faster. I knew if I managed this it was going to hurt like hell, but it was better than dying.

As the white figure approached, I spread my limbs, slowing my descent. It got closer and closer.....Wham!

I connected with the pegasus. It whinned in protest, trying to adjust to the sudden extra weight. I grabbed the reigns and motioned it to go forward. It reluctantly listened...and the chase began.

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