THE STORM
By Steve Ward

He stood transfixed. Cold sweat ran down his cheek but it was not from the heat. It was the same force that froze his legs in place. The cold truth that he was dead and the creature in front of him, with the long dagger like attachments on itís shoulders and the frozen blood red glowing eyes, each seeming to burn with deep hunger, was his killer. Slowly it filled his vision as a scream came from somewhere else. Then he realized it was him.

He stared at the ceiling. With itís organic shape and feel, it was the same dream every night. The dream. How long has it been since that night? "Too late for regrets, bzald. Whatís done is done." Although that did not help the burning feeling he had every day, a reminder of what he once did.

He even thought about traveling back in time to that day but he realized that even that would change nothing, just cause a splinter reality to form.

A bright green glow blanketed the room as the black orb came to life. Which was what it was, of sorts, a life. Something else that came from that day. He leaned forward, head resting on his fist.

"Show me."

A vision filled the room. A battle, like so many going on, heroes and villains fighting each other. Then he noticed who was fighting. Tropic, Valya and WillowWind in a pitched battle against several wolves that seemed to be winning.

bzald paused. "Wolves winning against those three?" He first thought it was a joke, then he saw Valya go down and not get back up. Or teleport out of there.

He shifted his focus outside of his place and instantly he was there. The night air seemed charged. He sensed something was wrong and streaked towards the battle.

He was not alone. A set of eyes watched him leave. "He is on his way. All points, he is on his way. Be ready."

WillowWind dodged yet another barrage from the closest wolf and blasted him full on in the face. The wolf was knocked back a couple of feet and he growled at her. Itís deep ember eyes were set on her, which seemed impossible because with that much power she should have melted the wolf.

"What is going on?" She kept her eyes on the wolf. As she glanced to the left at Tropic, who at the moment, was blasting a wolf as well and Valya who was near death between them, barely standing. And none of them could teleport out.

Just then a bright burst of light signaled his entering. The red cloak and glowing red eyes. Although Willow did not know Bzald long she knew he could be counted on in a fight. But he seemed at times wrapped in a cloak of sadness. And though she chose not to pry she wished he would talk about it sometimes.

She then noticed that the wolves who were ready to pounce on her had stopped. She was glad and worried that they quit.

Then a strange person covered in what looked like some sort of organic living suit stepped out from the side room. "Well, bzzzzald, so glad you could make it. The Spider said you would show. They know what happened and cannot wait to add you to the fold, bzzzzald. Your handiwork on that day is just what the Spider is looking for. I see the looks on the faces of your Supergroup allies. You have not told them. May I tell them then?"

Willow looked at Bzald as Tropic joined her. His eyes glowed an even deeper red as he pointed towards that creature. "You will tell them nothing!"

The creatureís face, even though it was blank or all features, seemed to frown. Then a booming laughter came from that creature which made the wolves cringe. "I see. Does not matter anyways, I have delivered the message."

He then backed away into the shadows with the wolves and vanished.

Willow turned towards bzald. "What was that about?"

He slowly turned to her. She backed up a little as did Tropic. Such sadness in those eyes. And anger.

"Nothing. You better get Valya to the hospital." Before she could argue, he vanished.
TO:
THE STORM:
TIDES
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