7 Chapter Seven-Enemies and Enemies Within
Drasul Stockhorn had spent a week inside the life tank, and once he was taken out of the tank, he spent a day still in a deep slumber. When he was awake, he thanked Silver and James but did not mention who had actually attacked him. Silver did not ask the question, but James did and got no answer. The only thing he got was that it was not the assassin and now that his health was back, the Dragon began to train hard.
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One day, James had left and Drasul was training, practising the Dragon Style's famous circle walking. His left hand was out in front, with his index finger in line with his nose. His left palm was facing forward at an angle. His right hand was tucked slightly below the navel and the right palm was facing down. He would plant his foot with the bottom of the toe area touching first and then followed by the heel. Rooting himself, he would spiral back the other away; hands changing when he walked the circle from the other direction. Looking graceful and swift. Silver who was watching clapped once Drasul was done walking the circle. 'Amazing,' he said. 'Always the fundamentals, it's all in the basics,' replied Drasul. 'Indeed,' agreed Silver, 'What happened though, if it was not the assassin who harmed you, who was it?' he asked. It was the first time Silver had asked the question and with his arms crossed, he frowned wondering how his old friend could have been defeated. 'People think it is a rumour or myth that you can breathe, a dragon's breath of fire or even turn into one. But we both know, that is no myth!' continued Silver. 'He struck me before I could display my clan's true power,' said Drasul, his eyes gazing away as his mind recollected the events, 'this man called himself Tet,' he added this time looking at Silver with a frown on his face. 'Tet, how did he look like?' asked Silver. Drasul sighed, and then said, 'He was an old man that was bald, pale and very thin…scrawny kind. His eyes were greyish, and he was definitely very powerful. His fighting style seemed like Shi San Shi…' 'You could recall the style when he was whoopin' your ass,' remarked Silver, and Drasul chuckled before continuing, 'Yes, in fact, the bastard bragged about not being at full power yet, and that he will soon be. He said he was the leader of the Brotherhood. You heard of them, right?' 'Yes, James has mentioned them a few times,' he answered. 'Well we not just fighting Gaia Corp and the Union, the Brotherhood is the one that is behind everything,' said Drasul, and Silver nodded before responding, 'So why have you not told James all of this?' 'That kid is a hound, he would have done something stupid and try to seek out this Tet and he would have definitely got killed. That Tet thought I was dead when he left, but where I failed in my martial skills, my dragon heart saved me,' answered Drasul. 'Yes, and the life tank, we might hate Gaia Corp, but Daniel Faris…son of a bitch has got a hell of a machine,' said Silver.
Silver took the Stockhorns, to a Separatist safe house, in a small town in the outskirts of Feiville. Although the Stockhorns were not on the wanted list, they kept a low profile. Silver was originally visiting his old friend and member of the Separatist movement. When he got word of what happened to Drasul, he thought the Union Guards had discovered that Drasul was a Separatist member. He was glad to find out that this was not the case. Nevertheless, with the Brotherhood, the Stockhorns believed that they were going to be hunted down and Silver also believed that this was likely.
They, therefore, decided to head to the ancient city of Sud, in the Sud Republic. A black minivan was parked outside the safe house. The engine was running, and Silver had opened the door for the Stockhorns to get in, and at that moment. Silver sharply turned around and so did Drasul, meanwhile James did not know what just happened and was still getting in the van. But right behind him stood a bullet, which had stopped and was floating in mid-air. 'What is going…' James words froze as he turned and was shocked to see the bullet. He then looked ahead. Cloaked by his black hood stood Medil, standing from quite a distance, pointing a handgun equipped with a silencer.
Silver snatched the bullet that floated behind James and threw it away angrily. Fuming, as his eyes focused on Medil. 'Who stopped that bullet?' asked James still amazed. 'He did,' answered Drasul pointing at Silver who barked, 'Guys go now!' The Stockhorns then hurriedly got inside the minivan, slamming the door shut and then the minivan's wheels span before they sped away.
Using his super speed Medil got closer, about a meter away from Silver, appearing in a sudden blur. 'So, you must be the famous Silver Serpent,' begin Medil hissing in tone and looking at Silver in disgust, 'You betrayed your people when they fought each other, so you could travel the world and fight fellow martial artists, in pathetic brawls or duels!' Silver chuckled and stopped with a smirk, looking at Medil up and down. 'I heard rumours that the clan had stopped its war amongst
itself and kept to the shadows, being hired to carry the tradition of assassinations. See kid, I am not an assassin to be exact, I am a martial artist,' said Silver. 'You were our most powerful warrior, yet you did nothing to lead us, as we tore each other apart!' yelled Medil, and then he looked at his gun which he still had, 'this will be useless against you!' he grunted putting the gun away. 'So, what now, you guys are the hired hand of the Brotherhood?' asked Silver. 'Their one of our clients yes, are current Grand Priestess would love it, if I brought your head on a platter. It is fine if I missed killing my target. You will do!' Once his words were said, Medil charged for Silver disappearing in a blur and reappearing closer to Silver, but he stopped in a sudden. Looking down he saw Silver's fist striking his stomach. He groaned in pain, as Silver stepped a few steps back and the hurt Medil then fell to his knees holding his abdominal area.
'Your speed or trick whatever that thing is is no match for what I can do. There is a war brewing, and do you think your enemy will spare the Slang Nyoka when he is done with the Separatists?' Silver knelt a bit down looking furiously at Medil, who was still in too much pain to let out a few words. 'You will take me to where the clan currently is, I have a proposal your Grand Priestess will not refuse,' said Silver.
Silver Serpent had left the Slang Nyoka when the clan fought each other, due to a leadership dispute. Many died, and Silver who was to be their next leader did not want to get involved. He did not like being an assassin despite all five hundred of his duels ending with his adversaries' death. Silver did not see himself as an assassin. Something the Slang Nyoka clan were renowned for, as in ancient times they were used in wars to end them. By killing the opponents of their clients, infamous for their stealth and craftiness.
Carl Sobek had taken Silver Serpent's place, in meeting a faction of the Separatist movement, who disagreed with the way things were being handled in the movement. They wanted more actions to be taken, they were the ones also responsible for the terror attack in a mall in Wobbleton, Sud Republic. An attack, which did not shed a good light on the Separatist group. It was not known to the group that they will be meeting with Carl Sobek instead.
The leader of this faction was led by the young twenty-five-year-old Rochelle Sud, a member of the illustrious Sud family, who once ruled the Southern lands in ancient times when it was known
as the Sud Empire. Fierce, proud and like most of her family members, she was proficient in the martial arts of the Loham Temple. As well as the family's Sud Fist, which was a different version of Shi San Shi. It came from the Fire School of Daoism, which was passed down by Emperor Rey Sud a family ancestor.
Rochelle Sud caught the eyes of most men, but behind all of that was a fierce nature. Her soft looking black skin and lovely hazel eyes were but a deception and the man who had somehow won her heart was her lieutenant Jeffrey Mins, a bald tall young man about her age. He was white, with a visible scar across his nose and what was notable about his physical features, was his muscular physique.
The couple and a few of their followers waited in an abandoned storage facility, expecting Silver Serpent who they had never met. They also did not know Carl Sobek either, so when he arrived alone they did not question his identity. He did not introduce himself either and was not happy to have come in Silver's place. In his moodiness, he sneered at Rochelle, 'So young lady and crew, let's wrap this up. You lot, are ruining what we are fighting for,' snorting with laughter as he looked around, 'really, what are you guys thinking?' he added. But Rochelle was not going to tolerate his rudeness as they glared back at him, 'You right let's wrap this up,' she said snapping her fingers and then Jeffrey who stood beside her nodded at a man who appeared behind Carl. 'This was the plan Silver, now the main leaders where ever they are…will listen to us,' said Jeffrey, and Carl frowned realising that they were not aware that he was not Silver. He had also not paid attention to the man behind him and as he spoke, 'Wait I am…' a shocking electric sensation zapped him to silence as he was shocked into a coma.
'Stop!' barked Rochelle and the man immediately stopped, she then turned to Jeffrey, 'all is going as we have planned, let's send them a message and they will understand we mean business.' Jeffrey smiled as he kissed her gently on the lips, lifting her up as if she weighed nothing and then gently putting her down. 'Let's fix this mess!' he barked, as a bunch of people that were there, lifted Carl's unconscious body up placing him on a chair.
It had been months and a few weeks, since his arrival in the Sol Islands. Felix was beginning to get the hang of things, but his body still ached from the arduous training. One morning he trained
in the glare of the sun. Standing in a horse stance at the beach with the view of the sea in front of him, Felix had his right hand's index finger upright. The thumb was bent, and the other fingers bent as well. He breathed out from below his navel, as he pushed his right hand out forward. He made a sound with his mouth, that sounded like a deflating tyre. After a series of repetitions with the right hand, he changed to his left. The exercise was one finger gong, a hard chi kung he had learned from Grand Uncle Kazak, it was something Grand Uncle Kazak had learned from a Loham monk years ago.
Once Felix was done, he stretched and then started to throw random combinations of kicks and punches. Also trying throws, takedowns and simulating joint locks. A few minutes into his shadow boxing session, he heard someone shouting his name. Felix stopped the shadow boxing and turned to catch the glimpse of a tall, bald muscular man, with narrow eyes that had epicanthic folds. It was Boris Subek, Grand Uncle Kazak's son and Felix's uncle.
Felix took a jog towards Boris, who stood to wait with his hands on his waist. 'Felix!' he said in his usual and normal scowling deep voice, always with a serious gaze. Felix was not intimidated and had got used to his uncle speaking like that. It reminded him of Uncle Fred who had a similar behaviour, but that was far milder. 'We need you at the Council of Masters!' he continued. Felix had a small frown on his face, but he did not ask any question and followed his uncle who marched away at a rapid pace.
The Council of Masters was the leadership core of the Separatist movement, consisting mostly of Subek or Sobek family members. Amongst the members was a Sud family member who before the formation of the Separatist movement, had travelled to the Sol Islands. Establishing the Separatist movement there with Great Grand Uncle Kek and Grand Uncle Kazak. The Council of Masters was traditionally the governing power of the Sol Islands, with Grand Uncle Kazak as the Chairman Master. He had replaced Great Grand Uncle Kek, who was also there seated.
Felix had never been inside the chamber of the Council of Masters when he arrived, it was the one thing he had not seen. The chamber was housed in an ancient temple, built in the honour of Felix Subek the First. He was the one who had unified the different clans in the Sol Islands and was the
founder of the Council of Masters. Outside the chamber's doors stood a bunch of men and women, including a tall guard who guarded the doors to the chamber. In front of the doors, and like most around the islands was a tall statue of Daruma. The men and women were dressed in military uniforms. Everybody saluted Boris and Felix using the martial yin yang sign as they walked through them. The guard opened the door for Felix and Boris as they strolled in. Inside the chamber were benches where the masters sat, that surrounded a large painting in the centre of the chamber, of two fishes of different colours that were facing different directions. This painting symbolised the yin yang symbol, and on the ceiling, was a painting of Felix Subek the First, leading his men into a naval battle.
Felix and Boris were in the centre, under the watchful eyes of the masters in the chamber. 'Thank you, Boris,' said Grand Uncle Kazak, Boris nodded as he went up the steps to his seat. Felix was now left alone looking up at all the seated masters. The doors flung open again and strolling inside were the men and women who stood outside. They were the Sol Island's militia. Consisting of commanding officers who were mostly fishermen and one of the Sol Island's finest martial artists.
'Thank you!' began Kazak, as the door closed, 'Ok so let's begin, Felix welcome to the chamber. Today we will begin the operation we have been planning for years, operation Thunder Fist! We will attack the Union Armada surrounding our islands, destroy them. All of you officers have already received the orders and are prepared for this day,' Grand Uncle Kazak's voice was audible in the chamber as no microphone was needed for a voice to be heard. This ancient gathering area had excellent acoustics. The plan was that they were to launch a surprise attack on the union navy, the first person that would lead the attack was going to be Great Grand Uncle Kek and Grand Uncle Kazak. There were also talks of deploying the Nautifist, it was a gigantic submarine and the only ship the Sol Islands had. Nevertheless, it was a force to be reckoned with, the issue was that they lacked any warplanes, luckily the Union navy lacked any aircraft carriers.
Listening in, Felix first wondered if the reason he was called in was to participate in this battle that was about to take place. He also wondered what is it that his great and grand uncle were going to do, to launch this attack. The Nautifist surely could not take on all the Union ships?
'Felix! The reason we have brought you here,' said Grand Uncle Kazak, as he gestured at one of the militia men who came forth and placed a telehologram on the floor. A three-dimensional image appeared, showing a tied-up Carl Sobek looking unconscious. The image then disappeared, and the militiaman took the tele-hologram. 'As you can see that is your father, he has been kidnapped by our own,' said Grand Uncle Kazak. Felix had a frown appear on his face and another seated master of the council spoke, 'My niece and her followers have kidnapped your father, they think that he is Silver Serpent, the reason is they want to bend the movement to their will…she is foolish!'
The man who had spoken was Ren Sud, the older brother of Cole Sud. About twenty years ago, Cole held protest marches in the East-South Union against Gaia Corp's involvement with the government. He was shot dead and his death led to a revolution that later led to the formation of the Separatist group. Ren Sud who had friends in the Sol Islands had secretly formed the group with the help and blessing of Great Grand Uncle Kek and Grand Uncle Kazak who were his close friends. He was a tall bearded black man, with thick intimidating eyebrows, he was very wealthy, given his family's history and a great martial artist who had never competed in the Lei Tai.
'Felix, your task is to save your father, you will be taken to Sud City, where James and Drasul Stockhorn will assist you with this task,' said Grand Uncle Kazak. Felix looked even more puzzled, James Stockhorn the detective, things were getting weirder. 'Great! This short meeting is done! Let's crush these sons of bitches!' grunted Great Grand Uncle Kek, as he shot out of his seat. 'Come follow me!' one of the militiaman hurriedly said, as he shoved Felix forward out the chamber.
Great Grand Uncle Kek and Grand Uncle Kazak headed for the beach. Where they could see the Union ships off the coast, it was Great Grand Uncle Kek that began as he first glanced at his son who glanced back. Standing in a horse stance with his hands positioned as if he was giving a hug, he closed his eyes breathing deeply and when they shot open, suddenly currents of electricity flowed around his body getting stronger as he focused, and at that moment, he yelled, 'HA!' A sphere of electricity that surrounded his body emerged and shot out towards the Union ships in the sea. Great Grand Uncle Kek breathed heavily and sweat crawled down his forehead. He and Grand Uncle Kazak watched the ships get demolished, some exploded as the sphere of electrical current that was emitted from Great Grand Uncle Kek, split into multiple smaller spheres causing carnage. Glancing at his son, Great Grand Uncle Kek said as he got out of his horse stance, 'Your turn my son.' Grand Uncle Kazak took a few steps forward and stretched his right hand out, he closed his eyes for a moment and when they flung open, a current of electricity shot out his hand straight into the sea as Grand Uncle Kazak's whole body started to shake. The electric current was like a thunderbolt moving and ravaging the union ships.
Felix could see everything from the top of a mountain, as he and the militia peered for a moment. He was flabbergasted by what he had just seen, the only martial artist he knew that had abilities beyond imagination, was Silver Serpent. But this was something new, after a minute of watching they hurried away. Felix was taken to a cave, where there was an elevator leading down to another cave that exited into the sea. There he took a glimpse of the immense Nautifist floating in the cave sea water, the Sol Islands' ultimate weapon.
They rushed inside and moments later, the submarine sunk into the waters, once they were out of the cave. The militia captain inside barked out commands to his subjects, buttons were pressed, and missiles were fired from underwater. The missiles ejecting out of the water heading for Union ships. Monitoring the situation, the militia captain could gauge that the Union armada had been crushed with a few harmless ships left. Felix looked around in wonder as this was beyond him, it came to his mind that a great war had definitely begun.
'Okay kid you going to be accompanied in one of our sea pods where you will be dropped in the beaches of Sud City,' said the militia submarine captain. Felix was still a bit stunned as he was then rushed to one of the pods with a group of four other men. Before he knew it, he was inside the pod and they were shot out of the submarine floating underwater in the large sphere that was the pod, within hours they floated up, off the coast of Sud City. Once they hit the beaches and came out the pod, Felix caught a glimpse two people, recognising James Stockhorn and not knowing who the other person was; it was getting dark and the sun had begun to slumber away.
'We leaving you here, we have a battle we need to re-join, good luck on your mission! Soldier!' barked one of the militiamen as they rushed back into the pod and rolled quickly back into the sea and then they were out of sight.
James Stockhorn and the other man who happened to be Drasul jogged towards Felix, who
waited for them. 'Detective,' begin Felix trying hard not to sneer. 'Felix this is my uncle Drasul, uncle this is Felix,' said James pointing at Drasul who stretched his hand out to shake Felix's hand. Felix shook it and said, 'Hi Drasul.' 'Okay boys,' said Drasul as put his hands on his hips, 'this is what we are going to do. Your father is being confused for Silver Serpent by those brats, do not know if you know. The Council of Masters had taken the liberty of not telling them that they have the wrong person. It is ironic that the war those brats want has just started in the Sol Islands. Anyway, we are going to head to the storage facility where they are and speak to them.' 'Speak to them?' frowned Felix. 'If they resist, we fight them,' said James. Felix sighed at that answer and he gazed at James and Drasul. 'Look Felix they are still one of our own,' said Drasul. 'Anyway, we need to head there now!' exclaimed James as he ran off and the other two followed.
Meanwhile, an hour later in the abandoned storage facility, Rochelle was asking around for Jeffrey Mins as it seemed he had gone missing. A now resuscitated Carl, was now cuffed to a chair and grinning till he broke into laughter. 'What's hilarious!?' Rochelle snarled lighting up her eyes, as she motioned towards him. 'Well your lover leaves you, you look worried,' said Carl as he grinned. 'You not worth my time,' said Rochelle as she turned away and sighed. 'Your uncle must be disappointed!' yelled Carl. Rochelle then turned back to him, 'He clearly has forgotten what we are fighting for! The Council of Masters and the Subeks are against the Lei Tai they do not want it to even happen and should it happen there should be blood. They want to reset the Union as the current one is corrupt and heading to a one world order. I kind of agree with all of that! But we also fighting for the murder of my father!' Rochelle's eyes got watery and she wiped the tears before they could trickle down. Carl scoffed unaffected by Rochelle's words, 'Quit going on! You emotional wreck!' he said. She lifted her hand ready to strike him and then stopped, as she heard a scuffle. Turning around she saw three men who had entered the storage facility and were getting yelled at by her men to put their hands up or they would shoot. 'I assume that is your rescue party,' Rochelle said turning to Carl who peered out noticing Felix.
Felix, James and Drasul had their hands in the air as they strolled forward-looking calm. 'It's okay guys!' exclaimed Rochelle as her men withdrew their weapons but glared at Felix, James and Drasul. 'You may drop your hands,' she said to them and they immediately did so. 'You guys have the wrong guy,' said Felix and a confused Rochelle turned to Carl who was grinning and had not revealed his true identity even after he had come back to consciousness. 'What do you mean!?' she angrily asked. 'That's my father, Carl Sobek,' said Felix. Shocked and taken by surprised she stared back at Felix realising who he was and so did some of her men. 'He is the champion of the Lei Tai!' barked one them.
'I know Silver Serpent! I mean have you not searched him online?' Felix frowned at Rochelle wondering how she could be so stupid. 'There is no way you or your men could hold him down if he were here,' he added making Drasul and James chuckle. 'They right, here is the real Silver Serpent,' said one of Rochelle's men, as he walked towards her with his cell phone, showing her a picture of him. Rochelle gritted her teeth as she murmured, 'Dammit.' 'Your uncle will forgive you, foolish girl, now let me go,' said Carl glaring at her.
'Ah a family gathering!' said a voice and everybody turn around to stare at a man with piercing blue eyes. Next to this man was Jeffrey Mins, towering over him and grinning. 'Jeff…' Rochelle tried to speak but froze as she frowned at her lover. Felix knew that face, it was Eddy and gazed at his cousin frowning as well.
'I knew you would end up part of the Separatists, a scumbag! Just like my dear father,' said Eddy as he looked at Felix in disgust. Felix's could feel his heart racing and then he remembered his father believing it was Eddy that had revealed Uncle Fred's involvement with the Separatists. 'What is going on?' asked Rochelle as she marched towards Jeffrey. Once she was close, he slapped her hard watching her fall to the side, his physical strength was immense, and he glared at her saying, 'Shut up! Bitch!' Holding and shaking she got up looking at him blankly. 'Ok, so we have you maggots surrounded, it's over now. Union troops are outside, there is no way you guys can escape,' said Eddy gleefully, and then he cast a sneering look at Felix. 'You are truly our family's abomination!' begin Felix in a rage, 'because of you my uncle died! You the Scum!' Felix looked ready to pounce on Eddy, but Jeffrey stepped in front of Eddy and Felix looked up at Jeffrey.
'Everybody make a run for it I will handle this! Felix! Help your father! James get them out of here now!' Uncle Drasul impatient, took charge of the situation and James immediately obeyed him as he grabbed Felix by the hand but Felix resisted, 'Hey! We came to save your father,' he said and Felix
looking at him then yielded. Rochelle followed them rushing forth to free Carl as she uncuffed him. Her men just peered around confused looking at Eddy and Jeffrey. 'Jeffrey is an agent of the brotherhood, not your lover!' yelled Eddy as he grinned at Rochelle. 'This really is not your day young girl,' said Carl as he massaged his wrists and shook his feet.
'What now?' asked Felix. 'The dragon will save us,' James calmly said. Drasul had got into a small horse stance with his eyes closed and his right hand over his left hand, holding them just under his navel. 'EVERYBODY RUN!' he roared as his eyes shot open. His voice sounded strange, deeper and loud. Like mice escaping a fire, Rochelle's men were set into a frenzy as the whole lot of them made their way out. 'They will get caught,' sniggered Jeffrey and Eddy chuckled in response. They turned back their attention towards Drasul, wondering what he was doing and before they knew it, they saw currents of electricity underneath Drasul's feet. The current shot up and covered Drasul's whole body and his eye pupil went red shining and beaming a red light. Eddy and Jeffrey were suddenly taken aback by this, as Eddy said, 'let's get out of here, we stronger outside,' once he said that they both run away.
'WHAT ARE YOU GUYS STILL DOING HERE!?' yelled Drasul. Shaken by the words, Rochelle turned to the rest and said, 'there is a door leading to an underground tunnel, serves as an escape route in case shit hit the fan.' 'Take us there now. My uncle is buying us time!' said, James. Rochelle then lead them to a secret door, which led to the tunnel as they escaped. Once he felt the presence was gone, Drasul grinned and in a bang of immense bright exploding light, the whole storage facility exploded, and a bright white beam of light shot straight up into the skies.
The explosion overwhelmed Jeffrey and Eddy, including the Union troops outside, as they were pushed meters away backwards by the force of the explosion. Felix and the rest thought the tunnel would cave in as they escaped feeling it tremble, but the tunnel managed to hold its own.