Chapter 09

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Seth was out of time to come up with a quick scheme to get out of his current mess. He could either flash but then again he wouldn't know where to go. If he ran away from Kat, he worried she might not survive or worse yet, that he would run into more ghouls or reapers and not have her combative skills to survive. Seth took a stand, ready to just fight off the ghouls.

"You're a fucking lost case, Seth!"

Maxine dropped from the sky, landing in front of him. Around her was dark essence and her skin had streaks of essence. The essence spread wider across the sky and swallowed up Maxine and she took the shape of a giant spider. The eight legs struck into the ground and before Seth was a fifty-foot tall spider.

And ghouls. Right.

Seth pivoted and attacked the ghoul behind him while the giant spider grabbed the big ghoul and devoured it whole in just one munch. The other ghouls leapt up to attack the spider but the red marking on the widow's abdomen dispersed into hundreds of human-sized spiders which combated the ghouls. More giant ghouls came out of the woods and headed for the Maxine.

Seth thought to himself that surely humans were witnessing this or could at least hear the screeching. And if so, the thought made him smile as to what they would think and how they'd react. Being dead brought so many surprises every time. Seth leapt over the lake towards Kat who was still battling the same ghoul. Coming up from behind it, Seth readied his scythe and nodded at Kat. She nodded back and the two ran towards the ghoul. Seth jumped and cut any tendril he came into contact with while Kat cut at the ghoul's chest. The ghoul roared and more came out from the woods. Across the lake, Maxine was still fighting off the massive ghouls. Even with Maxine's help, they were outnumbered. Seth and Kat stood back to back as more ghouls surrounded them.

"This doesn't look good," Seth said.

"Listen, when I drop to the ground, I want you to jump and high as possible," Kat said at a quick pace.

"Wait - what?"

"Jump!" Kat took a knee and Seth leapt up as high and he could. The entire bank on the side of the lake around Kat burst into black flames that burned the ghouls. Seth glanced down and saw that Kat's hair had now become black and looked like a flame. However, the flames burned so much that the lake itself began steaming away at the heat. The flames quickly ate the lake and reached the other side heading towards Maxine. The flames were eating everything they touched.

"Kat, stop! Don't hurt the spider!" Seth shouted as he fell from above. He could feel the heat of the flames start to burn his body and he couldn't understand how he was still able to feel pain. And what good was he if burnt to ashes?

He wished at this moment that he could fly. The flames reached the other side and charred the ghouls and reached the spider. The spider hissed in pain and tried to retreat from the flames but with no luck, the flames climbed onto the spider and began burning it down. The spider's hisses soon became screams of a woman. She was feeling the heat of the flames and tried to fight them off, but her size began to decrease. Seth fell to the ground and ran through the flames. Only then when engulfed within them, he felt a shot of pain over his entire body. He screamed in agony and felt incapable of continuing. He kept screaming out to Kat but she just stood there - her face was blank with no expression whatsoever as if she were dead. Seth tried to keep walking to her but noticed his skin was almost gone on his arm, let alone his entire self. The flames were too much. It's as if they got hotter the more he tried to move. Seth fell to his knees and soon his cloak was burnt away, his body now becoming skeletal.

Seth began to see his essence coursing around him, like cutting open an electric cable and seeing the current flowing. 

He looked up and could not see, the flames were all around him. He crawled on the ground and a light shone from his chest which was his core.

Seth just couldn't catch a break.

"Enough of this!" Maxine screamed and flew into the sky from the flames. She flew until she was high above the clouds and continued until all the flames had burned out. When she reached high altitude and the flames gave out, she flashed out of sight and was in the flames again but on the floor before her was Seth. She lifted him up and flashed away. She appeared on the hill and Kuro was there.

"What the fuck happened to you?" He asked as he took Seth from her, "I figured you'd be by the car when I suddenly couldn't find you." Kuro said. The barrier shut out all of the essence contained within the forest and he had not sensed Maxine fighting off the ghouls.

"That flame bitch is here! She ambushed us while I fought off the ghouls. Feed the rookie some essence, I'm going to kill that woman." Maxine said then flashed without a trace.

She appeared in the sky above where the lake was and all that was left was a pit of flames. She searched for Kat and found her then shifted shape into her spider form.

From the sky fell a hundred foot Goliath spider. It's weight caused the earth to shake but the barrier nullified the tremors from escaping to the city. Maxine sprayed venom over the entire forest, not caring what she burned but so long as it killed Kat. Screams came from the forest and Maxine could hear a girl scream and focused on the location. The venom began eating away the forest and as the venom attacked Kat, the flames began dying out. Maxine shifted to a demonic form and flew towards Kat, seizing her by the throat. She looked for a mountainside and threw Kat towards it, breaking the sound barrier. Kat smacked into the mountain causing a hole then fell to the ground. Before she hit the bottom, Maxine caught her by her hair and lifted her up until their faces were at level. Maxine could not sense anyone else nearby, for it would be bad for anyone to see her demonic form.

"Look at me!" Maxine commanded. Kat tried to open her eyes. The venom had melted her body and her core was trying to repair itself.

"Your little fire hurts! I've had enough of you slayers, you little bitch!"

"Tsk tsk tsk... Such a sad sight this is."

Maxine recognised that voice and large essence and got a shock but before she could do anything, a large blade tore through her chest and through Kat. Around her, in the sky, she was joined by other reapers.

Slayers.

Nathan was behind her and Maxine was finding it hard to speak, "You would even kill your own subordinate, Nathan?" The blade had almost pierced Maxine's core.

"Anyone that loses to the likes of The Order is not worth my time." He said and pulled out his blade, "Good night, ladies."

As the two fell to the ground each slayer vanished out of sight but one slayer hesitated then dove towards Kat.

Nathan flashed before him, "Daniel, where do you think you're going?"

The slayer froze and opened his mouth but was not sure about what to say. Nathan's blade pressed against Daniel's cheek. He backed up and vanished. Nathan looked down at Maxine and Kat, then vanished without a trace.
"Fuck," Maxine said as the pain was unbearable, "That asshole can really move."

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