Chapter 6- Duo Hunters
Just as Maximus heads out the door for school, he spots Laura coming out from her house before he had a chance to hop on his skateboard. When they make eye contact, they smile and wave simultaneously before meeting a few feet away from her porch.
“Morning Maxwell, I assume you’re heading off to school?”
" Yep, the science teacher I have at first period is a tight ass. He reports anyone who’s even a minute late. What about you? Where you off to?”
“Just to the bus stop up ahead. I have to get myself a rental car.”
“Oh. Well, I can walk you to the bus stop since it’s on the way anyway.”
Laura smiles then said,” Sure, why not.” Maximus holds his board as they walk off. Frank watched from his car while they ventured ahead. He was only a few cars down from Socrates’s place as he did, so they didn’t notice him.
“So, you really do got yourself a new boy, huh?”
Frank smirks then takes out a Desert Eagle 44 Magnum from his inside jacket pocket before taking a glance over to Socrates’s house.
“Old man still living well.”
A few moments later, Frank found himself in front of Socrates’s door while keeping his gun hidden on the side. He touches the door lightly with his fingers for a moment, as if he was taking in a faint memory before knocking a few times. Seconds later, Frank could hear Elf Dude inside shout,” Who dares disturbs my ears!” Frank could tell by his tone that he wasn’t sober. Frank chuckled for a second, then quickly put the gun back in his jacket pocket. Elf Dude swings open the door then steps outside. The disbelief all over his face as he stares at Frank. Frank just smiled back then sarcastically said,” Zelda must be proud of you, Link.” Elf Dude rubs his eyes with his hands before eventually responding.
“Frankie-boy? I thought you were gone, never to return.”
Frank kept his smile while thinking carefully about responding since he didn’t expect him to answer the door.
“I came here cause I had a feeling that my replacement would be ready for fieldwork by now. But, the thing is, someone is expecting the same thing. Someone is making moves, and I’m here to finish what I started. After that, the new pup can do whatever mission he wants, well, whatever he’s told to want. So be a pal and tell the old man the same, will you?”
Elf Dude blinked a couple of times, then let out a burp. Frank stepped back while making a disgusted face, but it only made Elf Dude step forward immediately.
“Hey, wait a second now, wait. I know you want to handle this for reasons you may deem essential but-
“Ah ah ah, Don’t overstress it, just tell the old man what I said, ok? Alright, see you around.” Frank said after cutting him off. Just as Frank turned to leave, Elf Dude yelled out,” Hey!” Frank glances back over his shoulder from his sudden outburst a second before Elf Dude turned him around by the shoulder. Elf Dude then looks up at him, eye to eye, before speaking in a semi-serious tone.
“I don’t care how old you are, don’t disrespect me like that. I helped raise you and even covered up for most of the shit you pulled around here. It doesn’t matter how much of a badass you think you are. Just remember this. I slayed a dragon.”
Elf Dude stood still as best as he could even though he wobbled slightly since he was half drunk. “I know, Elf Dude, no worries,” Frank said before hugging him. Frank then pats Elf Dudes’ shoulder and walks off. Once he drove away, Elf Dude turned to the door to see Socrates already leaning against it, watching Frank drive off. Socrates had an agitated look on his face as he spoke.
“This is bad. Frank is going to mess everything up. Possibly ruin Maximus’s chances of ranking up too. Why couldn’t he just stay gone?”
When Frank made his way to the Double D Dice club, he parked out front and honked his horn three times before honking one more time two seconds later. It was his way of letting Freya know it was him. After about five minutes, he did it again. A moment after, he began to worry cause it was unlike Freya not to respond, let alone after twice. Now frustrated, Frank gets out of the car and heads to the front doors of the club. He then kicks them open and walks straight in as if he owned the place. It was then where he saw Freya sitting with Kate at one of the tables. Both of them narrowing their eyes back at him, clearly annoyed at his sudden outburst.
“Hey, don’t you two give me that look, I was freaking honking out there, and I know you heard it, Freya.”
Kate growls while keeping her stare until Freya places her hand on top of hers with a look of sincerity before saying,” It’s ok; he doesn’t know.”
Frank raised his eyebrow,” Know what?” Freya walks over to him with her stare changing from annoyed to sorrowful. Her vibe changed with it just as she took his hands and spoke in a lower tone, “Frank, the new hunter killed Ace.” Frank was clearly surprised.
“He did? Wow, I didn’t think the guy was evil enough to be on T.A.C.’s hitlist.”
Kate stood up from her chair while keeping her eyes locked on Frank while speaking.
“Apparently, he was. I’m going to kill him, and if you get in my way, I won’t hesitate to kill you.” Kate said in a tone mixed with anger and pain. Just as Frank was going to respond, Freya placed her index finger on his lips. She knew that whatever his response was going to be, it wouldn’t help. Freya then turns around to Kate with a small smile across her face.
Just as she was about to attempt to calm Kate, Frank walks past Freya toward Kate.“Frank, wait!” Freya shouts. But it was too late since Frank and Kate were now facing each other. Kate’s growl increased, but Frank would only grin before eventually speaking his peace.
“Listen, Kate, this isn’t like before. I won’t stop you from doing whatever the hell you want to do. But, I need to speak with the hunter before you kill him off. He’s part of my investigation. I didn’t take the long drive back to this shitty town so that you could ruin it.”
Kate held her ground, not intimidated as she responded.“What investigation? Thought you quit being a hunter?”
“My investigation, that’s all you gotta know,” Frank said in his usual cocky tone. Kate growls then extends her claws before speaking in a harsher tone. “Listen, one-eyed bandit. I’m not my sister. You don’t get to bark orders at me.”
“Baby, my bite is bigger than my bark,” Frank replied in a sarcastic tone. Freya steps in between the two and shoves Frank back hard enough for him to know she was serious. He puts his fist up as an immediate reaction but then growls and walks off. Just as Frank got back to the door, he shouts.” I’ve already warned you, Kate! Don’t get in my way!” Freya sighs, then turned back to Kate, who, at this point, kept her stare towards the door just as Frank left.
“You know how he is,” Freya said while keeping her head down. Kate slowly turned her gaze back to Freya while her anger was slowly leaving. Freya hugs Kate, then whispered,” I gotta go. I’ll be back once he cools off.” Kate nods as Freya runs off to catch up with Frank. Once she got outside, she saw Frank leaning against his car’s hood with his arms crossed. Freya walks towards him, then lets out a sigh before attempting to calm him down.
“Frank, you have to understand what’s she’s going through. Ace was the love of her life. Now, he’s dead because of the new hunter. How can you blame her for not wanting her revenge?”
Frank kept his gaze on her for what seemed like a lifetime before giving a smirk that left Freya confused. “What?” Freya curiously asked.
“You don’t get it. I’m a hunter for life. Unlike the new hunter, I choose who I hunt when I want to hunt. I’m not bound to any higher cause. Kate can have her revenge when I’m finished.”
Freya looked away, just passed him. She was torn between the two since she understood both sides. After a moment of silence between them, she looks back at him.
“I know what this is about. That vampire princess isn’t it. You want that kill, don’t you? You think the new hunter might have some information about it, so you want to buddy up with him or even use his resources. Or something like that. Right?”
Frank narrowed his eye at her, then takes a few steps closer till being inches away from her face. When Frank leans down, Freyas eyes widen while keeping still, all while not knowing what Frank was going to do. He then smirked and walked away. It was almost out of character for Frank to do. Freya shouts, “Hey!” but he kept going. Once Frank got back in the car, he starts the engine. Freya attempts to open the passenger door, but Frank locked it so it wouldn’t budge. She shouts, “Hey!” while lightly hitting the door. Frank glanced over to her from the driver’s seat before driving off in a rush, which made her again shout “Hey!” while watching him drive off. Freya watched as the car sped off before crying to herself, alone.
Later during the day, Maximus was skateboarding from school on the left narrow path just down the hill from his home. He had so much on his mind about Hazard and the Vampires he had to take down, so he did what he would typically do, kept his eyes closed as he skated. A few seconds later, a car turned the corner fast. It was coming straight for him, which caused Maxmuis’s eyes to shoot open. In a split second, Maximus jumps eight feet in the air over the car. His skateboard gets destroyed by the vehicle right when he lands back on his feet. Maximus turns around just as the car stops then shouts, “Hey, you almost killed me!” Frank gets out of the car with a smirk on his face while looking at Maximus.
“So you’re the boy. What’s the matter kid, can’t afford a car, so you stole some twelve-year-old’s skateboard?” Frank chuckles at his own words. Maximus narrowed his eyes at him since he didn’t find any amusement with anything he said.
“You nearly kill me, now you insult me? Ok, pirate shit face, you owe me an explanation and a new skateboard while you’re at it.”
“Wow, you can be my little brother with that mouth. Of course, with a fresh baby face like that, maybe you could be my little sister.”
Maximus Lycan’s eyes come into view since he was becoming irritated while also trying to contain himself. Frank smiled, once noticing it.
“Ah, there it is, the beast within. I heard you took out Ace at the Double D Dice club, good job.”
Maximus raised his eyebrow in confusion just as his Lycan eyes fade away.
“I didn’t take out anybody. Are you with them?”
“Who?” Frank asked.
“Dante and his crew,” Maximus said.
Frank laughs then shakes his head in disbelief. “Hell no, you silly bastard. What the fuck gave you that impression?” Frank once again laughs at his own words. Maximus took a second to gather his thoughts while rubbing the back of his head, then asked,” Wait, Ace is dead? How? And who are you?” Frank takes a few steps closer, which caused Maximus to back up while keeping his eyes on him. Maximus caught Frank’s scent, and it hit him. “You’re a Lycan too?”
“Right, kiddo, and I got some good news for you. I’m here to help you. T.A.C. Inc sent me here to help out with the big issue in this town. Name’s Frank, by the way.”
“Help? I don’t need help. You didn’t answer my question. How is Ace dead?”
“Maximus,” Maximus said when cutting Frank off. Frank smirked then continued.
“Maximus, if you didn’t kill him, then I guess we better find out who did before his girl finds you. She’s under the impression that you killed the perverted Drow.”
“But I didn’t,” Maximus said. Frank gave a long stare and then shook his head slowly since Maximus didn’t come off as some killer to him.
“I believe you. But first, let’s take care of those Vampires at the Spencer Mansion.” Frank gestures for Maximus to follow while getting back into his car. Maximus took a few steps closer then picks up one half of his broken skateboard. “Godammit” He tosses it back on the ground, then looks back at Frank.
“I’m not sure about this. I already have everything planned out for tomorrow night. Why bother risking anything today?”
Frank sighs, then got out of his car and aggressively walked over to Maximus. Before he could get any closer, Maximus took another step back and got into a fighting stance. Frank smirked then chuckled.
“You gotta stop being so paranoid, kid.”
“I’m not paranoid, I’m careful, and don’t freaking call me kid.”
Frank narrowed his eye, then said,” Or what?” It took Maximus by surprise. How could someone who worked for the same organization as him and shared the same breed be so confrontational? After an odd staredown, Maximus repeats, “Frank?” Frank raised his eyebrow since it was random of Maximus to repeat his name.
“Yeah, that’s my name. Now, are you going to corporate or what?”
“What I mean is, your a Lycan, you work for T.A.C. inc, and I’ve heard your name before. You were the last hunter, weren’t you?”
“Well, well, guess the old man spoke about me. Trashed my name I bet, didn’t he?”
“What old man? Socrates? No. I heard Kate mention it. She called me a wannabe Frank, meaning you.”
“Whatever. Who cares about what Kate said. I’m trying to get you on your mission. I’m sure you trained enough to get this done. I’ve scouted the Spencer Mansion. There are only three members inside.”
“Yeah, I know, Dante, Bison, and Raphael. I already got the briefing.”
Frank crossed his arms. “Right, briefing. What exactly is your plan?”
Maximus was hesitant to answer at first, but then he just came out with it “Tomorrow night, Bison will show up at the Double Dice club around midnight. I’m going to stop him before he reaches the club. Taking them out one at a time is what we settled with.”
Frank gives Maximus a look of disbelief before forcing a fake smile on his face. “That’s such a pussy way to handle things. You need to strike first, not wait for the enemy to make a move, and just fucking cruise around on your skateboard till then. So here’s the new plan, we go to the Spencer Mansion. I’ll give you a weapon and watch your back while you handle the Vamps that your missions require you to handle. Got it?”
“Uhm, I, uhh,” was the only words Maximus could let out till Frank gave a single pat on his shoulder before heading back into his car. Frank then honks his horn and shouts, “Let’s go!” Maximus looks at his broken skateboard again, then sighs. “Fuck it.” He says to himself before getting into Franks’s car. After they took off, Maximus glances over at Frank.
“So, why the eyepatch? Did you lose your eye? Or is it just to look cool or whatever?” Frank smirks then says, “Cheap shot” Maximus nods slowly, then turns straight ahead at the road. But he was still curious, so he continued.
“Cheap shot how? Did you get jumped?” Maximus asked. Frank lets out an annoyed sigh, then decides to change the subject.
“We still have a few hours of daylight. Luckily for you, all the Vamps inside the Spencer Mansion are halfbreeds, which means that it would be like killing some regular-ass human once exposed to sunlight. Unlike the purebreds that burst into flames, which by the way, should be that way for all of them. Just saying.”
Maximus nodded then said, “Right.” For some reason, he felt as if he were talking with Socrates all over again. About fifteen minutes later, Frank pulls the car off to the side with the mansion now in full view up ahead, surrounded by a large gate with an oversize “S” crest in the middle. Frank reaches over to the back seat before pulling out a sword and handing it to Maximus.
“Bet T.A.C Inc told you not to enter cause you needed the right clearance or whatever, right? Well, I’m your clearance. Now go in there and take care of things your way. I’ll be your backup, alright?”
Maximus took the sword and stared at it for a moment while not believing he was already in a situation like this. His concern showed on his face. Frank smirked then said, “You got to work on your poker face.” Maximus rolled his eyes, then focused his view on the mansion. Frank reached over and opened Maximus’s side of the door, “You’ll be fine, kid, now get,” Frank said as he pushed Maximus out of the car. Just as Frank closed the door, Maximus narrows his eyes back to him then asked,” What about you?”
“I’m gonna drive around and enter through the back, much how like I’ll do to your mom when she thanks me for helping out her son.” Maximus narrows his eyes at Frank as he laughs then takes off.
Maximus brushed the part of his arm that Frank touched when pushing him out before looking back at the mansion. He then takes a deep breath and quickly made his way to the front gate. After taking a glance around, Maximus jumped over the nine-foot gate till landing on the other side. Once Maximus knew it was clear, he ran off towards the mansion itself. While Maximus ran along the mansion side, he stops when spotting the second-floor window halfway open. He then jumped up high enough and made his way inside. Once inside, he glanced around the perfect looking room. It looked like no one been there for years, almost as if it were just for display with old furniture and such. Maximus lets out a small “Whoa,” then goes to the door and opens it slowly before peaking out. He looks back and forth in the long hallway, noticing how everything was so dark, even during the day. The long black curtains kept the halls as if it were night. Suddenly, Maximus heard a man yell out in pain, which made him turn his head in the direction and quickly follow the sound. Finally, he got to the door where the sound was coming from. Just as he was about to open it, Maximus heard someone speaking from the other side. As he listened carefully, he already knew who it was, Hazard. Maximus cracks the door open very slowly and peeks inside. The room was big, but a mess since the tables were flipped over everywhere around the room, along with some other furniture. Finally, he saw Dante hanging by his wrists with chains attached to a hook from the ceiling. His guts were hanging out from his stomach, along with his face being half bloody. Hazard stood near Dante as Ace stood in front with his metal claw covered in Dante’s blood.
“Dante, you’re taking this “I’m a badass” thing way too seriously. I mean, why protect a princess that doesn’t even love you? Aww, wait, you love her? How cute.” Hazard said in a dark, sarcastic tone. Dante coughed up some blood then spat it on the floor just near Ace before shouting back.
“I told you, you stupid fucking bondage faggot! I don’t know where she is. We looked all over the world for her, but she’s gone, maybe even dead, by Spencer’s lapdog!” Hazard then gave Ace a single nod, and at a moment’s notice, Ace gives a single swipe across Dante’s chest with his metal claw. More blood spilled from Dante’s chest as he hung there, grinding his teeth together from the pain.
“I know you vampires are corrupt as fuck but telling a pointless lie is just, pointless. Unlike Ace’s metal claws,” Hazard said with a chuckle shortly after. As Maximus looked on, he was confused about how Ace was alive, let alone working with Hazard. Maximus figured maybe Frank was lying, but then again, why would he? Maximus wasn’t sure. What he knew for sure was what was happening in front of him. Maximus narrowed his eyes while holding onto the sword tightly since he made up his mind to chop Hazard’s head off. Right as the thought occurred to him, Hazard’s eyes widen since he felt Maximus’s corrupted thought. Hazard says, “Oh my,” before turning around to spot Maximus peaking from the door.
“Maximus! The pretty boy hunter graces us with his presence, everyone! Rejoice!” Hazard shouts while Maximus stood there in shock at how he knew about his intrusion. Before he could think about it any longer, Hazard vanishes then reappears in front of Maximus. “I don’t recall inviting you?” Hazard said in a demonic tone. Before Maximus could react, he was suddenly pushed back by an unseen force that sent him back into the hallway till crashing against the wall. The impact caused him to feel a little dizzy. Hazard then turned to Ace and said,” Leave” Ace gave a nod then took off from the door on the other side. The door across Maximus slammed shut, which made the hallway dark again. Although Maximus could see in the dark, the dizziness didn’t help when he got up. Maximus then hears Hazard speaking again from all sides of the hallway, making it hard to pinpoint Hazard’s exact location.
“The Angel Carrier, that’s far from an angel. So what are you carrying? Bravery? Courage? Corruption? Oh yes, corruption. We all carry that big hunk of a load. What’s the plan? Save the Vampire? Kill the Reaper? Get the girl? Maxi boy, your better off getting the girl cause out of all of us, she just might lay down for you. Or lay you out,” Hazard said while his voice echoed throughout the hallway, his creepy laugh soon following, which now grew louder and louder which, caused Maximus to have a headache. Maximus began to feel as if he were going crazy as Hazard’s laughter got louder.
Seconds later, Frank crashes through the window while taking down the curtain. It caused the sunlight to shoot inside the part of the hallway where Maximus was. The light also revealed Hazard, who was standing near Maximus. Frank locked his eye with Hazard, and without wasting any time, Frank takes out his gun and starts shooting him. All eight rounds went into Hazard’s chest until falling back onto the floor. Maximus looked at Frank, then back at Hazard as he laid there seemingly dead. Frank walked up to Maximus and asked, “You ok, dude?” Maximus gave a nod then Frank stood over Hazard’s body but quickly noticed something odd. Hazard’s eyes had X marks over them, like in cartoons when someone died. Once Maximus noticed the same thing, they both looked at each other confused. Suddenly, Hazard sprinted up onto his feet till he was in front of them both and whispered, “Boo,” just as the same unseen force pushes them both across the hallway. They both fall onto their backs, but Frank pops back up to his feet quickly and points his gun back to Hazard. However, by then, he was gone. Frank shouts, “Fuck!” Maximus promptly got back up and ran back to the other room where Dante was still hanging. When Frank caught up to him, he spots Dante struggling to break free, but only for a brief moment since he stops when spotting the pair.
“Ok, I know this might be weird, seeing how your hunters and myself being a Vampire. However, times are changing, and well, I got the money to pay you both if you let me go right now.” Dante said in an attempt to spare his own life. Maximus narrowed his eyes at him till looking back at Frank.
“How in the hell did Hazard managed to do this?” Maximus asked. Frank just shrugged, which only irritated Maximus, so he continued.
“You said Ace was dead, but clearly, he isn’t because Hazard had Ace slicing Dante up. So were you lying?” Maximus's tone was more demanding. Frank turned his body towards him and gave him a look since he felt insulted.“You calling me a liar?” Frank asked in the same tone as Maximus. They both stare at each other as some tense builds. Dante just looked back and forth at the two and tried to intervene. “Not to interrupt this staredown you guys are having but-”
“Shut up!” Maximus and Frank shout back to Dante before he could finish his sentence. After a few more seconds, Frank takes a step closer to Maximus. “Clearly, this Hazard dude is a Reaper. I smell it all over him. So he must have control over Ace’s soul. Or Ace made some deal with him since he’s grimey like that. Luckily for you, I know how to kill Reapers.”
“How?” Maximus asked.
“Easy, you chop their fucking head off.”
“It can’t be that easy.”
“It is because I have done it before, dumbass.”
Maximus narrows his eyes at Frank in reaction to his comment before looking back at Dante. “Where are Raphael and Bison?” Maximus asked, still in a demanding tone. Dante shakes his head since the loss of blood was getting to him but manages to answer.
“That goddamn Reaper took them out. It was a massacre. Even that stupid ass damn Kitsune got killed.”
A look of concern came over Frank’s face when Dante mentioned Kitsune. He couldn’t help but think of Freya. At the same time, Maximus turned back to Frank and asked, “How can a Reaper kill Vampires and Kitsunes?” Frank kept his stare on Dante when answering Maximus.
"Reapers can kill Vampires because they don’t have souls. Hence why they can’t throw them around as Hazard did with us, there’s no soul for their power to grab. Far as Kistunes, they can’t just kill them, so I don’t know what the fuck this shitbag is talking about, but I’m going to make him explain it to me.”
Frank stood in front of Dante with a stare that was enough for anyone to know that he meant business. “What did the Kitsune look like? How did Hazard kill her? You better start telling us what the hell happened, or I’m going to start breaking every bone in your body till you look like a goddamn bloody marshmallow, “Frank said in a demanding tone while Maximus looked on. Dante locked his eyes on Frank as he began to respond.
“It all started when we heard Ace was dead. My crew and I had to make an unscheduled visit to the Double D Dice club to discuss a new contract since the last one was under Ace’s name. But nothing went according to plan once that goddamn Reaper showed up.”