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Of Gods and Games

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Demons. Elves. Magic. Monsters. Living Gods. Things our world was never meant to have, but with the Fall, all these things have come unto us. A world left behind by the Unmaker, the ultimate monster. The Fall changed everything. The World of Man merged with the Magical World, and with it, nothing remains of the world we'd called home for centuries. In the modern age, a nearly utopic era of cooperation, and coexistence between the two worlds has lead to a world full of wonder, but under that surface rests a growing discontent and at its heart a single class of students, more special than any other in the world.

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Prologue One

The world changed long ago, during the great upheaval of the early 19th century, when the Unmaker appeared, stepping into our world for the first time, and in an instant destroyed the barrier between his world and our own. These two worlds coexisted for endless eons were never meant to meet. The Unmaker swore that this was only the beginning of his actions, and he left behind cryptic words to those who witness the fall of the world of magic into our own.

“Torn once, the world has been. When I return, a second time all shall be asunder.” Prophetic threat left behind, the Unmaker has not been seen since the Fall. At the nexus point, where the two worlds met first, a land mass appeared. Apparently, it was torn from the magical world as it was destroyed. Throwing the countless living creatures of the now destroyed world into our own.

This island, off of the eastern coast of the newly founded United States of America would become a gathering place for those who’d been displaced by the Fall. It would be named Sir Martin by the agreement between the people of the island and the world they could reach out to. Apparently, the name held some meaning for the people of the Magical World, but they never spoke of it, merely alluding to an ancient Hero.

Over the next hundred years the world went through so many upheavals and changes, but even after the Great Wars, of the early 20th century the world continued on. Though, in the shadow of great pain, came the rise of two very different groups. The magical world had many amazing creatures but lacked in one thing that our world had in spades. Humanity. This single difference leads to a divide, that would eventually lead to the modern day.

Two groups, opposing in all things but their mutual hatred of all things related to the other. The Puritans of the Last Saint, a group believing in the purity of humanity, and its hard-fought progress in the ways of science, and civilization. They hated all things magical in nature.

The opposite to the Puritans were the Council of Sarcarous, named for the now destroyed Kingdom of Sarcarous which was ruled by the Demon Kings, and their followers. They believe solely in their own conquest of the world, and the subjugation of all others. They were a major proponent of the Second Great War, though unlike the Puritans who are more isolationists, the Council of Sarcarous is a terrorist organization. Their actions constantly attempt to destabilize the world.

Closing the book, and closing her eyes, the young reader rested her head against the window frame as the ground sped along swiftly alongside the swiftly moving train. Her fire red hair seemed to almost catch alight in the bright afternoon sun, as he eyes scanned the horizon until she found the distant sea, it’s deep blue matching her own eyes. Annoyed with the horizon, she turned her gaze away and looked around the small, but private room she’d been given.

She was on an express train, one of the easiest ways to travel long distances quickly. She was tired. Everything was so different, it was like the entire world was being thrown on its head. Glancing down to the cover of the book she’d been reading, the title ‘an abbreviated history of the New World by...’

She closed her eyes, the name of the author hurt her eyes. It was some name that belonged to one of the ‘Elves’ as they were called by humanity, though they had other names back in their homeland, it seems they were honored to receive such a name, based on the folk tales of our lands. She was given the book, along with several others, to help her adjust.

Until today, she had lived her whole life in the compound. She was a Puritan born and raised, and she hated the constant comparisons to the Council of Sarcarous, but it was common enough. She didn’t know if she was excited or scared. She was on a train heading right to the place that she’d always been told was the worst in the world. Sir Martin, the island of Magic.

She knew that magic was really everywhere, that it was a fact of the world now. Even the trains had some magic to them, magic and science in one. The only places where magic wasn’t used at all was in Puritan compounds, but she’d been...excommunicated. She’d been sent a letter, magically, from the Sir Martin Academy for the Gifted, such a direct statement of ‘mystical corruption’ drove her from her home.

She was ‘Spell Touched’ a terrible curse in her home, and it left her in exile until she could be shuffled off to her new home, in Sir Martin. She’d never heard of the School, but it had somehow heard of her. So she was now shooting towards the shore, to go to an island academy for monsters, heroes, and all sorts of others.

She had an escort from the school, but the man looked more like a vagabond than an escort. He was laid out on the seat across from her, sleeping soundly. The one thing that caught her attention when they had met was the badge on his coat. It was a ‘Badge of Authority.’

Pulling out her ‘Tourists Guide to Sir Martin,’ she glanced through until she found the entry on ‘Badges of Authority’

...Next, we come to the subject of the several special sorts of beings you could meet in Sir Martin, some may appear as |human| as you, while others could look like monsters from beyond reality, but all of them share one thing in common. Power. They are classified as beings that require being bound and marked to be able to exist in the world without causing disasters, or harm to others without their own intentions. Badges come in seven levels, codified by colors.

White - Artillery. Beings of this nature are capable of acting more like a weapon of war, than a living being. Their casual destructive power is like that of an artillery shell.

Blue - Demolition. Beings of this nature are capable of destroying entire complexes, like an uncontrolled demolition with casual ease.

She stopped and glanced up at the Badge on his coat, it was grey. Scanning down, she found the entry. It was two higher than Blue.

Grey - City Buster. A being capable of easily destroying an entire city if not bound by the Badge. Their power must be unbound by a Magus of the second sphere or higher to be used in full. Beware, they are still rated -Blue- while bound.

She glanced back up at the scruffy, sleeping man. His long coat, and the bag of things he had on him. He was just a man, how could he be so dangerous. She wanted to know more about her escort, but he’d been asleep the whole time. She wondered if there was a registry of those who wore the badges, but her computer was stored away at the moment, so instead, she just stared at him.

“What. The. Hell?” She muttered under her breath, she could almost feel her eyebrows twitching in annoyance. There was no way this guy was capable of something so utterly ridiculous. The idea that anyone could casually display power like that was just impossible, if it was true then magic would have overwhelmed science long ago.

Reaching out to touch the Badge of Authority, she glanced at the sloppy vagabond’s unconscious face. Grasping the object, she felt a terrible feeling well up in the pit of her stomach, before she snapped back pressing herself against the opposite bench, back where she’d started, but the look on her face was a pure terror, in that single moment she’d seen something. It was wrong. It was wrong. It was wrong.

“Well, you seem spooked,” a casual yawn escaped his mouth as he stretched several loud noises escaping his back and torso before he sat up, giving her a dull look, his eyes were no longer the dark color she’d seen before, but now a deep silver with a bright red ring around it. Glancing down, he noticed his badge was no longer perfectly attached to his jacket. He looked down at the floor between them seeing the travel guide sprawled out between them. “Ah, I think I can guess what happened. Curiosity is pretty common in humans, such a deadly trait.”

Picking up the book, he set it down next to her. “I suppose we should do a formal introduction then. I was going to avoid it, but I suppose being a touch serious may be to your benefit. I am Deymia, a demon. One of the three hundred and thirty-three Demon King Candidates. The Badge of Authority allows me to appear as a proper human, it prevents panic as even the most adjusted humans can be quite scared of things like me,” His face broke into a toothy grin, extending his hand out to her.

There was an awkward moment before she relaxed back onto the bench. She considered everything he said, and at this point, she didn’t want to imagine disagreeing with him. His power, and the feeling she felt on touching that badge of his, it was terrible. She looked at his hand and shook her head. “I am Emily, I don’t really think that my family would accept me using my last name anymore…so for now just Emily will work.”

Deymia merely snorted as he lowered his hand, glancing out the window to see where they were before adjusting the badge on his jacket. His features softened, regaining a human fullness to them, his eyes returning to a dark brown color. “Interesting, not that I don’t know about you already. Still, you’ll need to give them a full name when you arrive, so come to terms with upsetting your old family or coming up with a new name altogether. Once you have your identification on the island, it’ll be a pain to have it changed. Trust me on that.”

“Identification?” she asked, and Deymia seemed to be as confused as she was.

“Ya know, like your ID Card, or Driver’s License. Just with more magic than paperwork,” he didn’t see any recognition in her eyes. “How many families lived in your compound.”

“Forty or so, a few hundred people. We occasionally had converts or transfers from other compounds. Why?” Emily replied, and Deymia’s face fell into a look of despair.

“You are going to make my job a real pain, aren’t you?” he grumbled loud enough for her to hear clearly, he could tell it had an effect when the trembling returned. “Calm down. I am going to go get a drink and see if a friend of mine is around to talk to you. They can explain a lot better than I can.”

“You are going to perform a summoning?” Emily asked, and it gave the Demon King Candidate pause.

“Yeah, how did you guess that while not knowing what identification cards are?” he demanded, and she had a faint if eerie smile.

“Know thy enemy, and you shall never be without a blade.” Emily had grown up in an anti-magical compound, and they absolutely hated Demons the most, so it wasn’t beyond him to think they had some actual information on them. Still, the way she looked at him, and the trembling bothered him.

“…how do you think I am going to summon my friend?” Deymia leaned forwards almost accusingly before she could respond, invisibly pushing Emily further into the corner.

“Virgin Sacrifice? Blood of innocents? Collecting the sins of the train riders through profane ritual?” Emily rambled off, her words tumbling from her mouth quicker with each moment. The Demon blinked several times before laughing so hard he had to hold himself up using the door to the compartment.

“Wow. What an image,” he replied to himself more than Emily before stumbling forwards trying to regain his balance, sliding the door open and stepping out into the hall. Glancing back to Emily with a smirk, and a small sigh of relief from his fit of laughter. “I’ll be right back, sit tight.” He walked off, but it wasn’t hard to hear him repeating her words as he did, and laughing again.

With a soft thump, Emily slumped over to lay down on her bench. The tension from the moment all but gone now. Her heart was beating so hard she thought she would pass out any moment. “What am I going to do now?” she asked herself, but the only answer she received were the muffled sounds of the train speeding towards the shoreline.

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