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Fantasy Inspirational Fiction

Riuk San Din stood in front of a mirror, he carefully looked at his body. He was a great cultivator and his body reflected this. There were long lines that covered his body. Filled with, what looked like, a pure white light. This was a direct result of his cultivation and was a symbol of his dedication and his power. 

Two pool of the brightest purest light were all that remained of his eyes, another affect of his cultivation. The way Riuk saw the world was completely different ever since he got the new eyes. Instead of being able to see normally, his vision was filled with varying shades or greys, white, and blacks. The amount of white he saw was dependant of the purity of someone’s soul. It was a fitting ability, since his mission in this life was to find and end the corrupt.

Now, as he stood staring at himself, he saw his own brightness. He shone with the purest white he had ever seen. Although, he sometimes asked himself, am I still human? The short answer was, yes. Although he didn’t believe it was that simple. If ever he died during a fight and his soul wasn’t destroyed, he would be remade in the same image. It had happened, once, he was slain in battle by a vicious enemy. He had thought it was the end for him. Then suddenly he was awake, and without a scratch. It taken a couple of weeks, but he was alive.

He sighed and took a step away from the mirror. Riuk bent down, then jumped upward, propelling himself through the air. His body was unaffected by gravity, as he flew toward his destination.

There was a dark evil that had begun to take root in this part of the world. Thousand had already been killed and millions more were being ruled by fear. When Riuk learned what had been happening, he knew he had to act. 

Riuk garnered the nickname Slayer of Demons and his feats were legendary. It wasn’t like he cared for such things, he only cared about how pure someone’s soul was.

It took him no time at all to reach mansion of the tyrant who ran this territory. The man’s name was Azef the Defiler, and he was powerful. Riuk was sure that he would be able to defeat him because, in the end, the light always wins.

***

After some time, Riuk stood before two massive eldritch style gates. They seemed to be alive as tentacles sprawled across them. He didn’t hesitate, however, and threw the doors open.

SLAM!

When the gates fully opened, they revealed a huge open area with a walkway down the middle. The walkway had dark pillars on each side and lead to a throne. In the throne sat an enormous figure, who was more than one hundred feet tall. 

For a moment, they were both stared at each other, motionless. Neither one of them wanted to be the one to make the first move. This continued for several seconds until Riuk lost his patience and spoke.

“Azef the Defiler! You have been accused of crimes against humanity! Your actions are unredeemable, and you have been sentenced to death! I am here to see you brought to justice!”

Once he was done with his usual speech, silence filled the air. The enormous form, that was Azef, didn’t flinch. Riuk wasn’t used to this from the people he fought. Normally they would meet him outside their castle or try to trap him somehow. He had never seen them just remain calm and have no reaction to his presence. 

After all, he was known through the world as the Slayer of Demons, and Riuk was certain that the man before him was undoubtably the worst he had ever seen. The second he saw the beast; it was as if all light suddenly ceased to exist. Even the most corrupt and evil people Riuk had met still had some sort of light. He now saw that Azef had none – a void.

***

They fought for hours, with no clear winner revealing themselves. Entire city blocks were toppled by the two titans clashing. Riuk thought that he was starting to get the better of Azef. He realized that there was a pattern to his attacks and since Azef was so much larger than Riuk, he could dodge his attacks easier.

Suddenly, Azef pushed him back and created some distance between them. In a booming, thunderous voice he spoke.

“YOU THINK YOU KNOW ME?” Silence followed his words. 

Riuk was taken aback by his opponents surprising words. Of course, he knew who he was. The behemoth before him was Azef the Defiler. An evil person, one who abandoned everything it meant to be human. Someone who had done horrible deeds beyond measure. There was no redemption for someone like him.

“What kind of question is that? You are Azef the Def-” Riuk was interrupted by Azef.

“NO! I said do you know me?”

Riuk had no answer for the man. Just when he was about to end their little discussion and finish this once and for all, something unexpected happened. Azef dropped to his knees and began to sob. Great big tears started to fall down Azef’s checks and fall onto the ground. He watched as the monster that he had come here to defeat broke down before him. With his whole body shaking and his voice cracking a little as Azef looked at Riuk and spoke.

“I have done terrible things…For which I do not expect to be forgiven…” Azef paused for a second before continuing. “When I was a little boy, a group of evil men came to my village. They assaulted the women and killed the men. I was one of the lucky one who was left alone, deemed unworthy for even their attention. My sister and mother, however, weren’t so lucky…” Again, the monstrous figure had to pause before continuing. “I had to watch while they did unspeakable things to my them… Then, they took them away and left me all alone. This…” He gestured to himself and to the city in ruins around them “… is what I became. All for nothing… When I eventually found my family, they had become shells of themselves, hanging onto live by a thread. I couldn’t bear to see them suffer anymore… So, I had to…” He trailed off and continued sobbing, shaking the streets due to the size of his body.

Riuk was stunned. He had no idea this had happened to him, or maybe he just never cared enough to look into it. Now, he was conflicted as to what he should do. The sobbing monster before him was pure evil, but perhaps it wasn’t all his fault.

“Get up.” Riuk said in a commanding voice. A plan was beginning to form in his head.

Azef was confused for a moment, then he listened. The enormous figure stood up on two shaky legs and starred at Riuk.

Without saying anything else, Riuk walked over toward the man. While the man had been sobbing uncontrollable, Riuk had noticed that Azef’s soul had begun to change. Where there was once nothing but absolute darkness, a rift had opened in the cente. A small white light now shone through the darkness. Riuk had seen this happen once before, to someone he knew well, and it gave him an idea.

As he stood before the towering figure, he reached his hand toward him. Azef reacted instinctively and grabbed Riuk’s arm. He held it for a second but eventually he let his arm go.

Riuk used his power and began to levitate in the air. He flew up to Azef’s midsection and put his hand on his sternum. The look on Azef’s face was conflicted but he didn’t do anything. For a moment, nothing happened.

After a second, Riuk started to fear that his theory had been wrong, maybe Azef was truly unredeemable. Then, Riuk saw as the rift that was inside Azef’s soul begin to widen. He watched as more and more light started to pour out of the darkness, guided by Riuk.

Azef let out a pained yell and seemed to struggle with himself. Riuk felt like the man before him wanted to attack him with all his being, but he resisted. 

The toll of being around so much darkness and filtering it through his own body was too much for Riuk. He felt weak and he didn’t know how much longer he could keep doing this. Light continued to pour out of Azef, as Riuk broke up the darkness inside him. His idea was working, the only problem was that he wasn’t sure his body could handle the amount of darkness Azef contained within him. His body felt weaker and weaker, until he blacked out.

***

When Riuk woke up, he immediately remembered what happened.

“Azef!” He called out, looking around the ruined city.

There was no sign of the individual he had come to deal with. Riuk flew up into the air and searched for any sign of darkness. Instead, what he saw was a light source, almost as pure as his own. He flew toward it as fast as he could. 

Once he was close enough to see who it was, he landed on the ground and froze. In front of him was Azef the Defiler, or maybe he couldn’t be called that anymore.

He had the same look as Azef, but he was much smaller, about the size of a regular person. What really surprised Riuk was his soul. It was a bright white color now. Riuk looked at his own soul and had to admit that Azef’s color almost matched his own.

“Thank you.” Azef’s words snapped Riuk out of his shock.

“W-what happened? I thought I passed out.” Riuk replied.

“I don’t know exactly what happened, but I feel like a new person. I understand that I will still have to atone for what I did… All I hope for now is that I can prevent what happened to me from happening again.” Azef said, his voice sounding calm.

Riuk didn’t know what to say to the man who stood before him. He clearly wasn’t the same man he had come here to defeat. Perhaps he deserved a second chance…

After all, Riuk himself had been like Azef once. Until a great man appeared and help him. Now, he realized, he had to do the same for this man.

“You are correct. You will atone for what you have done over time. I believe in second chances… Your new life begins now.” Riuk said and started to walk away.

Before he could get too far, he turned backed toward Azef and motioned for him to follow. They both walked in silence, as Riuk contemplated what he had done. Together, they passed through the gates of the city and into the plains beyond. Only time will tell if redemption is possible. One thing was certain, though, Riuk was hopeful.

September 01, 2023 17:39

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4 comments

13:33 Sep 11, 2023

This is so interesting! The theory, the story, the whole concept of this is so interesting, a lot of thinking could be got out of this! Hope you make a sequel, or a few sequels. Absolutely love this.

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Anthony Carello
16:56 Sep 11, 2023

Thank you very much for your feedback. Hope you enjoyed and stay tuned for more!

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Chris Pye
04:00 Sep 08, 2023

Thanks for letting me read your story, Anthony. Intriguing! It seemed to me I had a glimpse into a much larger picture, a larger world of myth and history. I hope you flesh the story out one day.

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Anthony Carello
12:03 Sep 08, 2023

Glad you enjoyed the story! I may write more Cultivation stories in the future. Stay tuned!

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