tab Jordan awoke wearily, looking around at the walls of his tent. Suprisingly, Serenity was gone from his side, and all was quiet outside. Worry began to well up in his chest as Jordan slid out of bed and pulled a simple white shirt over his head. Just to be safe, he grabbed one of his sabres from the chest at the foot of the bed and carried it out with him. Standing just outside of the tent was Serenity, stretching in the bright early-morning sun. He looked around and saw nothing wrong, letting out a pent-up sigh of relief.
tab "Hey." He said, wrapping an arm around her waist. She let out a squeal of excitement and turned to him, blushing.
tab "Hi! Sleep well?" She asked.
tab "Like a baby." The Old One waved at the two of them from his customary spot near the large bonfire at the center of the village. Jordan waved back enthusiastically. The Old One appeared to be entertaining some of the children of the village with stories. Serenity chuckled and slid an arm around his waist, nuzzling up against his side lovingly.
tab "I love you, Jordan. You know that, right?"
tab "Of course!" Jordan said, a little put off that she would doubt him.
tab "Why the sudden change of mood?" He asked, pulling her closer. She let out a sad sigh and entwined her other arm around his waist, trying to bury herself in his chest.
tab "It's just... You- you left without saying anything a few months ago... The first thought that crossed my mind was how much you hated me. But then I looked at the ring on my left hand and shook my head. It was a stupid thought, but it was there nevertheless." Jordan held her close as her words washed through his mind, lending no small amount of worry to his already distant thoughts.
tab "And?" Jordan asked quietly, lying his cheek on top of her head. She took a deep breath, letting it out shakily.
tab "And, I think you need to stop putting yourself in so much danger." Jordan sighed deeply and pulled her away from him, only to look deep in her eyes.
tab "Serenity, you know better than anyone else here why I do what I do. It's a long, hard road we're walking, and you can be damn sure I'm not going to give up yet. My mission comes straight from God himself." He shook her gently.
tab "I know you know just how serious this is. I'm trying to remove a vast group of people from this world with little to no help." He started to break up, pulling her close again. She clutched onto him, letting a few tears slip from her eyes.
tab "I'm doing this out of the hope that you and all The Saved will one day have a peaceful life, free of fear and hatred." A tear slipped from his eye and dropped onto her mahogany hair, turning it black with wetness.
tab "I know that..." She said shakily.
tab "I'm just being selfish. What are your plans?" Jordan blinked at the change of subject, but smiled at the relief.
tab "Well, all of the Landlords that stood in our way are gone. Only Lesser Lord Chiam and Lesser Lord Sasha stand in the way of Sophos." Jordan said, a hint of malice creeping into his voice. He remembered back to times before the apocalypse...
tab Jordan was the typical high school student, living in a small town out in Iowa, attending a local school, getting average grades... Sophos, formerly known as Jeremy Brackett-Acker, was Jordan's best friend for life. They had been closer than anyone else the former had had. They spent the night at eachother's houses, went to concerts, raised hell, celebrated birthdays, went to school, and all in all just lived together. But things began to change. The climate began to grow hotter, and the days dryer. Rainfall was scarce, and rivers were drying up. Thier lush little green world had begun to turn brown, and economic crises made it nearly impossible for them to go anywhere anymore. They soon grew bored of limited forms of entertainment, and began to spend less and less time together.
tab Then it had happened. That fateful summer in 2012 that had changed the face of the world. World War III. Nuclear fallout forced the innocent people of the earth into shelter, leveling major cities and decimating the face of the planet. A total of 20,984 nukes had been launched, each completely destroying key military bases and cities. Casualties breached three billion. Luckily, Jordan and Jeremy had been fairly isolate from any major detonations and lived, along with the vast majority of people. From there, though, the two friends turned completely different directions.
tab Jordan turned to his church.
tab Jeremy turned to his mis-lead friends.
tab In the end, Jordan joined a large migration of people moving to the middle east, some force on the inside driving him on to a higher goal. Some higher form of realization and understanding. What exactly he was looking for, he didn't know, but the same voice that guided his actions now provoked him into finding something greater. Over the course of the rest of that summer, the biological functions of the earth had changed. The sun was hotter, burning away nearly all traces of life on earth, eradicating forest and plain alike. Sand re-took the world. Cities were buried, and desert soon enveloped the world. Jordan found his calling, his purpose, one night while he prayed. His entire life was mapped out and told precicely as it would be. The thing that convinced him the most was his Intervention. Desperation had driven Jordan to the edge of madness. His group was on the eastern coast of what used to be the United States, searching for a way across the vast ocean. Supplies were drying up, and sickness spread among the two million or so people with him. Sadly, he stood on a cliff overlooking sharp, craggy rocks and prayed. When no answer came to him, Jordan took the last step of his life.
tab As he plummeted, realization dawned on Jordan. A perverbial ray of light slashed through the heavens and burned reason into his brain, as Jordan called out to the God he had followed all these years. A freak tidal wave welled from the ocean, catching Jordan and pushing him back up onto a rock ledge. Broken, battered and bruised, Jordan lay there until morning, when a patrol of people found him and pulled him to safety. He was still wet and shivering, and the people who pulled him out asked what his problem was, why he had done such a stupid thing. All he could mutter to them was
tab "He loves me." Jordan went on to lead The Saved to the new babylon, where the sinners and scum of the earth seemed to culminate. Under the leadership of the new, prodigy leader Sophos, The Beasts moved on to an untold age of debauched sex, drug abuse, and violence. Everything about thier way of life was not only immoral, but an atrocity to the God Jordan was sent by. Looking across the vast desert at the stain of humanity on the earth, Jordan vowed to uphold the promise he made to God and eliminate The Beasts from this world.
tab During this time, Jeremy went on with his group of friends and began to corrupt those around them with thier twisted views and logic. They lied, swindeled, and killed thier way to the top of the new world, forging the new city of Babylon in the desert and allowing all sorts of bandits, cutthroats, and lechers in. It became the symbol for hate, for escapism, and for The Devil. Jeremy changed his god-given name to Sophos, and began to practice many dark arts. He was imbued with a devilish strength that slowly tolled away on his soul, and still does. Sophos learned of Jordan and The Saved, and was heartbroken to learn that his old friend held such different ideals than he. Two sides were formed that summer, both intent on destroying the other.
tab Miraculously, Jordan found the lush forest to the north of Babylon and set about to making the home of The Saved. From his hidden jungle home, Jordan waged war on the largest entity of hate and immorality in the world. And he was winning. Slowly, piece by piece, he had chipped away at the structure of Babylon until he had left only three major targets. Soon enough, and with no small amount of Divine Intervention, Jordan would wipe The Beasts from the face of the planet and pave the way for God's will to be done.
tab Sophos snapped awake, haunted by the same dream he had been having for the longest time. Always... It was Always of Jordan and his past. Shaking his head free of the toughts, and his body free of the arms of several concubines that lay lazily about his bed, Sophos walked to the nearby vanity and washed his ugly face. A light knock at the door sounded, and Sophos turned to it.
tab "Enter." Sophos said harsly, slipping a robe around his shoulders. The lithe form of Sasha slipped into the room and closed the door behind her. Though her body was wracked with various diseases and other unmentionable calamities, she hid it well under a veil of perfume and makeup. The Creative Chief of Babylon, Sasha's job was to regulate all the cultural icons and fads that dictated the majority of Babylonian life.
tab "Milord Sophos, It has come to my attention that Landlord Jeremiah has been killed..." She said in a shy voice. Sophos' form dropped noticeably and he fell back into a nearby chair.
tab "God damnit..." He said quietly.
tab "Apparently..." Sasha countered, striding purposefully across the room towards him. Upon arriving, she lifted his chin, forcing him to look in her dark brown eyes.
tab "What are you going to do about Jordan?" She asked, cutting straight to the point. Sophos smirked and pushed her back with a powerful hand on her midsection. She stumbled and nearly tripped, regaining her balance halfway across the room.
tab "Don't worry about Jordan. That pest is mine to deal with."
tab "So what?! So you're going to let him and his followers kill us until he reaches you?! Then what, Sophos? Then what will you do? You know better than any of us here that he is your better..." Her words were cut off as a cairn of wine hurtled across the room and smashed into the wall behind her. Several of the women on Sophos' bed awoke with a small squeal at the loud sound and Sophos stood from the chair, fuming.
tab "THAT LITTLE MOTHER F$%KER GOT LUCKY!" He roared, staring straight at Sasha with hatred in his eyes. She shrank back from his terrible visage, whimpering a little. Her power was no good on Sophos, she had used it before to get where she was. With him, she had to rely on other methods to get what she wanted.
tab "Forgive me, milord... I wasn't speaking correctly. I am merely concerned for you well being." She whimpered, backing towards the door. Sophos harrumphed and turned his back, waving her off.
tab "Get out of my sight." He said, still fuming. The furious slam of his bedroom door told him she was gone, but he was angry still. He guessed he'd have to take his anger out on the women from last night. Thier scream echoed throughout the central palace of Babylon.
tab Jordan snapped his eyes open, a sudden feeling of pain striking through his head. He crumpled under it's weight and Serenity caught him.
tab "JORDAN?! She said, worriedly. A nearby citizen managed to see him collapse and was able to help Serenity drag him inside to thier bed.
tab "Go get The Old One and May..." She told the man, who rushed off to do as she told. Worriedly, Serneity sat on the bedside next to Jordan, who muttered in his fitful unconciousness. About five minutes later, May walked into the tent and looked over Jordan, muttering to herself. The Old One spoke to Serenity about what had happened.
tab "What happened?" He asked. Serenity told The Old One what she had seen, as he just nodded, holding one finger to his chin in concern.
tab "Ah, I see..." He gently laid a hand on May's shoulder.
tab "I don't think this is something either one of us can solve..." He said gently.
tab "We can only pray that Jordan and God come to terms with whatever's ailing this poor boy." They both looked at Jordan with concerned looks on thier faces as The Old One's eyes closed in a silent prayer. Inside, Jordan was in agony...
- Title: The Saved pt. 4
- Artist: Loyal2-1
The fourth installment of my very long series. Note from the author: I'm actually thinking of shortening the whole series, to roughly eight or ten parts. If that's the case, I'll more than likely begin writing my next idea shortly after I finish this one.
This time, we find Jordan and Serenity planning something, and we also get another look at life in Babylon, but from Sophos' point of view.
- Date: 01/06/2009
- Tags: saved action romance fantasy apocalypse