Flamerip

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Chapter 6: Eye Of The Cerberus

‘Come on let’s go training already!’ Fyre punches the air like a boxer hyping himself up for a fight.

I put a leash on Cerberus and pack myself my training dinner, ‘Calm down, we still have to tour the place beforehand as well.’

‘Forget that!’ Fyre jumps off my shoulder and onto the counter. ‘We can figure everything out afterwards.’

‘Fyre, disappear until we get to the gym,’ I order him with an irritated look. ’You’re being annoying.”

He quivers and exhales vexingly, ‘Fine.’

I pack a mini lunch for Cerberus as well, a water bowl, homemade treats and some of his dog food, a fancy mixture of chicken, beef, pork, and fish. I don’t really know what my private gym looks like or even what’s included with it. For all I know it could just be a small, fire-proof building with an even smaller locker room, or maybe even no locker room at all, it may just be a single room building. I shouldn’t set my expectations too high; I am just one person after all. I finish packing everything into my gym bag and I set off to my private gym, ready to start training to defeat Anthony Carcasco for the first time in months.

I arrive at the gym, the walls are pure gold, the night sky giving it a mystical feel, the stars and moon makes the building feel otherworldly. I can see my reflection in the shimmering gold, I peer down to see Cerberus scratching at his reflection.

Fyre appears on my shoulder, and makes a snarky comment, ‘Can I show up now, or am I still too annoying?’

I roll my eyes, ‘Don’t be like that, let’s go inside.’

‘I’ll be sure to stay quiet so then I don’t annoy you,’ Fyre snorts irritably.

I lift my hand and put a flame in it, ‘Want to be burned?’

Fyre puts his hands up in surrender, ‘I’m sorry, I’ll drop it.’

Fyre shuts his mouth and I walk up to the twenty-foot-tall, pure gold door, the door handles are sparkling diamonds and the windows are a thin layer of ruby. This looks like a sacred building, there’s no way in hell that this is my private training gym. I unlock the door with the key I was given, when I put the key into the lock its materials change from a regular steel to an opal. The lock clicks open, and the door slides it’s way open, Cerberus notices the commotion and comes running to my side. His fur sticks up and he growls at all of the racket and out of the ordinary movement. I kneel down and pet him, I pick him up and enter the gym.

Upon entering the gym, I am greeted with a robot at the front door that hands me a black and gold fluffy towel and some sort of uniform.

“Welcome, Lexus Deathchill, Fyre and Cerberus,” the robot greets us. It’s small, around three feet tall, its main colours are gold and black. Black for the majority of its build and a gold strip down the center of it. Its shape is two spheres, like a small snowman, a flattened head and a large body. It is covered in little circles all around its body, by the looks of it I’m assuming the circles hold little arms, when they open up an arm will come out and assist with whatever it’s supposed to assist with. It’s eyes and mouth are holograms to show movement. I peer down at the uniform, the colours consist of black, gold and red, it has a V-neck and three little symbols on both of the shoulders. A black flame, a black laughing skull and a black mist, the mist is most likely my cold. The back of the shirt says ‘Deathchill,’ in a black and red fade with gold in the openings of the D, E, and A. The front of the shirt has the name of a training organization, ‘Flaming Undead Wolf Protective Team,’ I never heard of it. I notice a little sewn on badge on the corner of the shirt, where my heart will be, it says, ‘FUWPT Sergeant Commander, Lexus Deathchill.’ I notice two smaller uniforms most definitely for Fyre and Cerberus. I look back at the robot for an explanation, it’s little holographic eyes squint like it’s smiling, “My name is Comrade Assistant 276-A3SS2, or CAASS. I will be assisting you with whatever you may need while your training, I will now begin the tour. Please, follow me.”

CAASS leads us past the front entrance and through a tall and long hallway, full of paintings and battle weapons. I look at one side of the hallway and see flame nun chucks, I look at the other side and see a floating orb of some kind.

“This is one of the weapon hallways, every single one of these weapons have been used by at least one of your ancestors, going all the way back to the launch of the universe.” What happened to me being a normal high school kid just enjoying my normal teenage years? I look over to Fyre on my shoulder, he is in complete awe. I gaze down to Cerberus, his nose is going wild, but he isn’t leaving my side to smell anything, he’s getting everything from right beside me.

The robot stops in front of a giant door, unlocks it and turns to me, “This is one of the relaxation rooms, meant to help you heal after training, it has a sauna and five robots to cater to you and give you massages.” The door opens and we walk inside. It’s pretty foggy, but not too hot, feels like it just started warming up though. A second later five robots half the size of CAASS come rolling up to us, they look the exact same as CAASS except every single one of their colours are different, one has red instead of gold, another is pure black, one has blue instead of gold, one has green instead of gold and one has gray instead of gold. I’m guessing that they all have slightly different names as well. I look slightly closer and notice that all of their eyes are a different shape as well, CAASS has triangle eyes and everyone else’s eyes are all different, the one blue has squares, green has circles, red has rectangles, gray has ovals and the black one has diamonds.

“These are the robots that would assist you in this room, their names are the shapes of their eyes,” CAASS explains. “Now, let us continue the tour.”

We exit the room and Fyre finally says something, ‘I think I’m really starting to like this place. Can we live here?’

I laugh and shake my head, ‘It’s best if we don’t.’

CAASS leads us further down the hall of weapons and paintings, I’ve seen at least seven bows already, all of them having different abilities. I spy from the corner of my eye a gun that grabs my attention. CAASS immediately notices me walking over to the weapon and explains its history, “That weapon was used by your ten millionth great grandfather, his powers were invisibility, silence, teleportation and love. He was chosen by this weapon at the age of fourteen, his name was Guy Seen Deathchill and he died at the age of ninety-seven by trying to do a trick shot off a waterfall, he was trying to shoot a bird as he was falling and then teleport safely away from the waterfall before hitting the ground, but a bear with dragon wings came out and tackled him, he hit his head on a rock and died. Based on his health he was expected to live another twenty years if he hadn’t died that day.”

“What did he do for a living?” I ask CAASS. “What was the gun for?”

“He was a famous hunter and due to his love power, plenty of women fell head over heels for him, although the woman he ended up marrying was immune to his powers and he ended up loving her because she was a challenge,” CAASS explains. “Between the ages of fourteen to eighty he would use that gun to hunt down the beasts that managed to find their way to the non-magic lands, he can use it to shoot out concentrated bullets full of his powers, for instance, if he were to shoot a bear with a love bullet then it will either try to find a mate or protect him out of love. If he were to shoot something with a teleportation bullet, then it will teleport whatever he shot to the location he was thinking about when he shot it.”

“Thank you for the explanation,” CAASS smiles and we continue the tour. I want to know more about my ancestors, they sound hilarious. “Hey, CAASS, what is the ‘Flaming Undead Wolf Protective Team?’”

We continue to walk as CAASS clarifies, “It is like your own military, right now it only consists of you, Fyre and Cerberus, you can bring on whoever you think is worthy and train them to become stronger, we can also provide names of people who we think would be a good fit for the team.” We stop in front of another door, and CAASS continues to explain before unlocking the door. “Since it is your military it can be for whatever you want, from rescuing people to community service, but Darren Mungsion and Daria Mungsion have the initial plan for it to be for you to train and defeat Anthony and also train others to defeat other villains.” CAASS finishes explaining and unlocks the door, we walk inside, it’s bright and overly colourful. There’s a ginormous dog bed in the center of the room with hundreds of toys and bones scattered throughout the room. Cerberus leaves my side for the first time and immediately attempts to fit seven tennis balls inside of his mouth at once. Fyre’s jaw is dropped and his face is screaming amazement. “This will be Cerberus’s personal recovery room; I understand that there is also one in your hotel room, but this is for when he is unable to go home. If he were to need to recover for whatever reason, then you will bring him here and we will have robots and veterinarians to look after him.” I have a recovery room in my hotel room? How big is my hotel room? “Fyre also has his own recovery room, as well as you. Now let’s continue the tour.”

I whistle for Cerberus and he comes shooting to my side, carrying a bone twice his size and prancing proudly.

‘I have my own room?’ Fyre asks, overflowing with joy. ‘If it looks even half as amazing as Cerberus’s then I’m definitely living here!’

‘I bet yours is covered in flames,’ I mention. ‘Still, we can’t live here.’

‘Why?’ Fyre questions me.

‘Because you technically can’t leave me and I’d rather stay near my brothers,’ I explain.

‘Just ask them to move in with us then,’ Fyre suggests.

I shake my head, ‘Sorry, no. We are not living here; we are training here.’

CAASS stops outside of another huge door and unlocks it, we all step inside, it’s a giant industrial fancy looking kitchen, “This is where your meals will be made for you or you can even make them yourself.” The cupboards are steel, the countertops are gold and the drawers are made out of diamonds.

“Why is all of this being made just for me?” I freak out. “I’m just one person, I don’t really need all of this.”

“You may be just one person, but you’re the person who will defeat the world’s largest problem, and you will even be given the chance to help with other problems aside from that,” CAASS exclaims. “You are just one person, but you are also a huge deal, once you unleash your true power then no one will dare to break the law.”

“That’s the second time now,” I point out. “What do you mean by, ‘Unleash my true power?’”

“I am not allowed to share that information,” CAASS excuses, and rolls out of the room. “Let us continue the tour.”

‘The way that was worded made you sound like you’re supposed to be a weapon for the government,’ Fyre points out with a distrustful look pointing towards the robot. ‘I don’t think anyone is seeing you as an actual human being anymore, we may need to be cautious from now on.’

I shake my head, ‘I trust that it’s not what it seems, if you think otherwise then do some research when we’re not training.’

Fyre nods, ‘I will figure out as much as I can, we will be partners until my family has been avenged. So, I should make sure that nothing sketchy is going on behind the scenes.’

‘Just in case if something sketchy is going on,’ I begin to warn him. ‘Make sure to not get caught or even suspected.’

‘I will be like a ninja,’ Fyre raises his arms and legs into a theatrical and stereotypical ninja pose.

“Hey, CAASS,” I struck up a conversation while we continue walking. “By the looks of it, everyone in my family has been chosen by a weapon at some point, when will my brothers and I receive our weapons? Oh, and what were my parents’ weapons?”

“Everyone is chosen by a weapon at some point during their life,” CAASS starts. “However, not all chosen weapons look like the average weapon. You have already received your weapon, it is Cerberus. I know that may sound like we are not seeing Cerberus as a living creature, but it is much like with military dogs, they are both pets and combat partners. As for your brothers, they have not figured out their style yet, so until they figure it out, they will not be chosen by a weapon.”

“What about my parents?” I ask him.

“Your father’s weapon was a pair of metal wings, they helped him with balancing himself during flight and they were able to sharpen themselves to cut almost anything,” CAASS exclaims, robotically. “Your mother’s weapon was a sword called ’Mmaagha Kamalu,’ The sword glows red when people with evil intentions are close by and it can cause tremors when struck on the ground. They have been placed at the front entrance of this building since they were the most recent to pass away.”

“I wonder why I’ve never seen them use them,” I silently ponder to myself.

We stop outside of two more doors that are right across from each other, CAASS spins around and two arms come out of the circles and point towards the two doors. CAASS robotically explains, “On your right is Fyre’s room and on your left is your room.” Just then simultaneously both of the doors unlock and slide open. I decide to start with Fyre’s room since he’s pulling my ears towards it, we walk inside and Fyre is immediately jumping in joy at the decor. The entire room is black, red and dark gray, there are a few chains hanging from the ceiling and there’s cages of fire all around the room. The room looks like a prison that can be found in the deepest pits of hell. Fyre’s bed is in the center of the room and is surrounded by a moat of lava, Fyre swings on one of the chains nearby it and somersaults onto his bed of fireproof blankets and fireproof pillows. Cerberus almost runs into the room, but I promptly scoop him up into my arms, I’d rather not have my puppy be set on fire so soon after getting him.

I leave Fyre in his own little oasis inside of his recovery room and walk across the hall. Cerberus looks more excited than I feel. His teeny-tiny, soft, black tail shaking frantically from side-to-side. His adorable stub of a tongue flapping in every direction after every step I take. He’s pretty much vibrating from joy and excitement. I enter the room, the sides are bookshelves, the floors are heated and fireproof, the ceiling has a ton of TVs that are connected with the cameras all around the gym. The entire room has a cabin getaway vibe to it. My bed has drawers under it, the blanket and pillows are made from fireproof fabric and there are little steps on every side, most likely for Cerberus. My blanket and pillows are pure black, and the bed sheets are a dark, demonic red. I set down Cerberus and he springs onto the bed like a bunny on steroids, he then bolts into the center of the bed and spins as fast as a tornado, stopping every few spins to stare at me, snort like a pug, then continues.

“You’re such a puppy!” I squeal at how adorable he is and jump next to him, both of us bouncing up and down four times. “Who’s a good boy? Who’s a good boy?”

CAASS comes rolling in, “The books on the left side are fiction, meant for entertainment. The books on the right are non-fiction, meant to help with training and keeping up with the history of your powers, like other people who had the same powers as you and how they used them.” Fyre walks in wearing his new uniform, there’s a gold badge on his outfit as well, I look closer and see what it says, ‘Combat Power Enhancing Leader.’ He throws Cerberus’s uniform at me and I read his badge, ‘Companion Defense and Offence Leader.’ I put the outfit on Cerberus with great difficulty from all of his energy and him flopping around like a snake and CAASS then continues to speak, “Let us continue the tour, we will be skipping over a few rooms so I’ll tell you what they are right now.”

I get up and carefully place Cerberus on my shoulder, trying to not drop him from all of his wiggling, “I understand, it would probably take hours to tour this entire place and I wouldn’t have been able to get any training in.”

“Exactly,” CAASS agrees and we start walking down the hallway again, the huge doors to the room clanging shut and the locks causing a ruckus. “So, there are three pools in this facility, all having their own jacuzzies and the spa robots from earlier are also able to travel from room to room through underground shafts. There is also a breeding center in case you wish to continue the family line of Cerberus. Additionally, you can also request people to bring in their pets for breeding if you think the mix will be beneficial through the offspring.” We come to a cross section, CAASS takes a few seconds to process which way to go. CAASS rotates left and continues that way, how big is this place? “You will also be able to find entire rooms just for a specific exercise, for instance a yoga room. There are also two strength training rooms and three cardio based rooms, they are all scattered throughout the building.”

“Why are there so many rooms?” I interrupt. “Once again, I’m only one person, I have no need for three different rooms with treadmills. There’s no point in having such a large building just for one person.”

“Don’t forget, this is also where you’ll be able to train your own army,” CAASS reminds me. “It may be empty now, but eventually you will be training an entire generation of warriors and especially an entire community of protectors.” We come across another cross section, this time CAASS rotates right and rolls a little more slowly. “There is also a medical center where if you find anyone injured then you will be able to bring them to that room and they will be helped nearly three times faster than a regular hospital.” CAASS comes to an end in the hallway, rotates to face us and concludes the tour, “This is where you’ll be doing a majority of your combat training with Cerberus and Fyre. If you would ever like a more in-depth tour call out my name and I will show you every single room. There are even more rooms and centers that I haven not even mentioned, for instance, there is a theatre room and other entertainment facilities.” The door unlocks and CAASS begins to roll away, “Enjoy your training, and have a great rest of your day.”

CAASS leaves us and we enter the room, the flooring are black tiles with the lines in between all of them being gold, there are huge, luxurious windows all around the room with mahogany red curtains. Cerberus and Fyre leap out of my arms and start running around the room, the way they check out every nook and cranny makes them appear like best friends running around their parents’ wedding. I notice a wall with a couple different weapons hanging from a few chains. I walk over, yank a wooden spear off the wall and begin to analyse it. It was recently carved from lignum vitae; the blade is also made from the same wood, but it also has some gold infused into it. The point isn’t that sharp, the hardest thing it could penetrate would probably be a simple dictionary or a small journal. I start swinging it around, it weighs perfectly for my grip, not too light to make me lose control but also not too heavy to slow me down.

Cerberus notices me swinging the stick around and comes barreling towards me, Fyre following closely behind. I try to aim the point away from him as he leaps up to it, but he ends up snapping down right onto the blade. He lands gracefully on the ground and starts playing tug of war with me, I attempt to get the blade out, but he’s snapped right onto it. I take a closer look and see that it’s perfectly placed to help his grip without cutting him. I crack up at his stupid smile and yank the spear out of his mouth, “Wanna train?” He barks, jumps up and down and Fyre clampers up onto my shoulder. “Fine, let’s train.” I hold the spear up in an attack formation and sprint towards Cerberus, he does the same towards me, the training has begun.

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