The Halo Breed
THE HALO BREED
A WEEKEND STORY
Queen Derbie turned from the portrait on the wall when her husband came in.
It was late night, and he had just put his daughter to sleep.
They had two children now, a five-year-old male the queen insisted on calling Gussy, and a three-year-old princess called Liz.
She was in their bedroom and looking at the framed portraits of their children on the wall, and her hand hovered near Sena’s image.
“He would’ve been ten halo-snoozes now,” she said.
The king stopped behind her and put his hands on her shoulders.
“Ten years, yes,” he said, trying to sound bright, but the pain and bitterness was heavy in his voice.
“Trapped in the Underworld,” Queen Derbie said. “I wonder if he’s alright. I wonder if we’ll ever see him again.”
“Well, we can only hope so, my love,” Gus Kukah said gently. “The Sage told us he would be required for an assignment later on Earth, and beyond. So, I still hope that I will see him someday soon.”
“I want him back,” the queen said and turned suddenly, and he saw tears welling up in her wonderful eyes and falling down her cheeks. “I hurt, my Lord. It is like they wrenched my heart out of my chest forcibly! Just want my son back! Is that too much to ask?”
King Gus Kukah put his arms around her and hugged her tightly.
He nibbled her ear and spoke tenderly.
“I was a soldier in my former life, my darling. I went up against armies where warriors were mere children, and I looked at them and pushed my sword into their young hearts without pause.”
His face looked haunted now, and his big body trembled slightly.
“But today, I’m a father, and I also understand my son should go to war, and not just an ordinary war, but a war involving enemies I might not have seen, or faced before. It is important for him to be well-prepared, my dear, for as long as it shall take, so that when he goes to war, he will survive and come back to us. Let us strengthen each other, and hope for the best.”
She nodded slightly.
“Thank you, my Lord,” she whispered. “You’re wise, and I love you.”
But she continued to cry, and he held her. He knew a mother’s pain on the loss of a first child was deep, and so he knew that occasionally, as had been over the last ten years, she would cry like this.
He had pain too, and sometimes he had tears lodged in his heart, for he loved Sena the most, and wished to have him in his arms.
But the spirits knew best.
He would continue to wait patiently for his son, and strengthen his wife when she needed it.
Sena had been in the Underworld for ten years.
His life had been a bitter one, a continouos battle of survival, of scraping for every little morsel of food and breath he took.
The vagaries of the weather here was unpredictable. The terrain was covered with one constant battle after another against foes that were deadly, vicious, and as strong as steel!
Sena, through the hardest, brutal way, learned a form of combat that was as devastating as it was lethal. His movements were like a spirit, fast and fluid. His strikes were deadly and lethal, his moods dark and emotionless.
He had become a dangerous, calculating, dark and cold man. Pain had become second nature to him, and he lived through his pain without complain or acknowledging it. His life would have killed a million hardened warriors, and probably no human could have survived it.
As he grew into a boy, that spectral figure kept appearing at various intervals when the young prince was fast asleep, and there was respect and admiration on the dense and obscured face of that supernatural being.
He had no fear, and he felt no pain.
He was a deadly man that could kill ten men in a minute with his bare hands. And he could use anything his hand held as a weapon.
His body had suffered!
It had become a body that had scars on every inch of it, and the skin had been hardened and burnt by fierce sun that had no mercy on anything.
Sena wandered the Underworld, a warrior in his own right, a prince of the terrain where death could be sudden and brutal.
And, on the day that he turned ten years, he was pursued by an acid storm that he had witnessed a few times. This storm came in the form of a yellow cloud moving fast over the land…and everything it touched, it dissolved. Sena had seen this storm stripping hideous and strong monsters of their skins so completely that only their porous bones remained.
Sena, tired from a rigorous fight with two serpent-like beasts, had found some shade and slept for a while. He had been dragged rudely awake by the frantic screams of creatures, and when he woke up he saw the acid storm approaching from the distance.
Sena picked up his sack which contained grilled meat, weapons, and water. Fresh water in the Underworld was the most precious commodity. It was difficult getting water in a region where the sun was the most dominant force of nature, seeming to shine perpetually, releasing waves of heat that was never cooled, not even at night.
He was wearing crude clothes made from the hides of beasts. He had found years previously that the hides were tough and could not be eaten, and had deduced that once they protected the skin of the beasts, he would also be protected a bit if he wore them.
And so, he discovered clothes.
He had even formed crude shoes with bones and tails lashed with the skins of the animals, and these protected his feet a little from the extremely hot ground which was mostly brown rocks.
Like the monsters, he fled from the yellow acid storm, running across the hard ground.
His speed was uncanny, gained from years of practice. He was faster than the beasts as he covered the ground. However, as fast as he ran, overtaking most of the fleeing animals, the storm drew unerringly closer to him, claiming most of the animals.
Sena looked around desperately, and saw that the land rose into a mountain on his left. One thing about the acid storm was that it did not ascend to high heights. It always swirled thickly about twenty feet above the ground.
If he could get to the top of the mountain, he would be safe.
He changed his course and made for the mountains. His gait was a series of long, looping leaps that carried him forward like a giant frog, eating up the distance admirably.
The agonies of the beasts could be heard down the plains, but he did not stop to listen or watch.
Sena had absolutely no compassion or feeling for anything!
He went up the mountain quickly even as he began to hear the deadly hissing and crackling sound of the acid storm as it ate everything in its path.
Sena jumped higher and higher. His hands found crags that he used to swing himself up the uneven surface of the mountain, and then, after a mighty series of leaps, he gained the top of the mountain where it flattened out. He sank weakly to the ground and gazed down into the valley.
The yellow nightmare was blazing through relentlessly, catching up with the desperate beasts and stripping them to their bones, and polluting everything it its path.
Sena knew the effects of a typical acid storm lasted for many days, so he could not descend into that valley again. He had to go down the mountain at the other side.
Weak and tired, he rested for a while, and then he ate some fruits and meat in his animal-hide bag. He drank some water and then, a little refreshed, he descended the other side of the mountain carefully.
The land beyond was not brown rocks but quite sandy and cloudy, making visibility poor. His breathing was laboured as he struggled through the dense terrain, and then, just as he feared he would collapse, he broke free of the horrible land and found himself on a grassy patch of land.
And there, under the shade of some trees, was a serene pool of water.
A beautiful naked girl was standing knee-high in the water as she sang softly to herself and piled her hair high on her head.
Her skin was flawless, smooth, and dark! Her breasts curled upwards beautifully, and her body was so curvy and delectable. The juncture of her thighs framed a triangular patch, and when she looked up at him with sudden fear, and put her hands across her breasts, Sena could only stand and stare with wonder!
This was the first time he had seen anybody on this accursed land who looked like his species!
And this was the very first time he was seeing a woman…and a naked one at that!
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