Battlemage Macbeth: The curse of the Three Witches
In the age of magic, King Duncan ruled the land of Clearwater Hollow. People lived happily, enjoying their times of peace as magic flourished around, used in various ways by people in the town. A man at the age of thirty three stood in wait sitting at the edge of the town gate, his tan skinned body had red rune symbols on his left arm and on his visible stomach. He wore a white jacket that went on top of a red sleeveless shirt, black paints with a red belt with a golden medallion on the sign with another rune symbol. His golden eyes began to hide under their lids as he tried to stay awake to see his student. As his shoulder length grey hair blew in the wind, he sensed his student's magic and stood up smiling. "Welcome back, Malcolm. How did it go?"
"Master Banquo, I've finally mastered the sealing arts." Malcolm, at the age of twenty one wore the same attire as his master, though his came with a mage's attire a crimson vest similar to the Japanese haori in magic markings. His short ember colored hair had a few locks that covered his eyes, he pushed them away smiling at his master. "It was a larger strain on my body than I thought, but now I'm able to guard against and bind any enemy that attacks the kingdom."
"Let's not jinx ourselves; the land has been quite peaceful as of late." Banquo smiled at his student's progress, though he felt a bit tired as the idea of danger excited him. Peace in the land was beginning to be boring.
Deeper into the darkest part of the forest, a large behemoth of a monster with the body of a large lion with horns gave its final roar as it fell to its death. A man hidden under a black cloak stood before it, the sword that killed the monster in his hand before disappearing in light. He reached for a necklace around his neck to see the red jewel hanging from it, grimacing as it emanated a dim light that only grew dimmer by the second. "I have to hurry… before it's too late."
In Clearwater Hollow's local bar, Banquo gave a little gift to Malcolm by treating him to a drink. Malcolm smiled but shook his head, "Thank you Master, but you know I'm not one to drink."
"Nonsense, a drink won't hurt you at all, matter of fact it might help you loosen up." The young mage sighed watching his master take a drink of his own mug of beer. Banquo was a great rune knight, always precise and serious in battle, but when there was no need for it he could be too laid back and silly for Malcolm to handle. "You're a young lad now, you should hurry and do all the great things before you end up dead in battle. Have a drink, find love, and make a family for gods' sake."
"Master no offense, but you really shouldn't talk about making a family." Malcolm replied drinking his beer, trying not to gag from the first taste of it. "You're in your thirties and still haven't found a woman."
"Maybe so, but I've slept with a lot more than you smartass." Banquo laughed ruffling his student's hair. Even if he didn't have his own family yet, he thought of Malcolm as his own son for the many years he taught him magic. "Speaking of family how is your father?"
"My king… my Dad is as busy as always."
"I see…" Being the king lead to Duncan to have less time with his son, he knew Malcolm would understand but felt terrible thinking his own child wouldn't have time with his father. It was the reason why Banquo was chosen to watch and train him, he and Duncan were good friends and the king knew he would make a better father figure than him. "I'll tell you something, if your father were here he would be so proud of ya, I bet he'd strangle you in one of his infamous bear hugs. Trust me, those things can kill ya."
"Hehe, then how are you still alive?" Malcolm asked jokingly.
"Among many men, I'm known to have the best luck when it comes to fighting death."
The master and student laughed for a few, drinking their beers before a dark foreboding came over them. They could sense something dark coming near until a telepathic message crossed into their minds. 'Attention! All knights and mages to the gate immediately, two chimeras are attacking!'
"Chimeras are here? Did someone create them?" Malcolm asked.
"There's no use thinking about it now, let's go!" Banquo's expression turned serious as he answered the call of battle.
With Malcolm not far behind, the two made their way to the gate as they caught a glimpse of the two apparitions fighting the other knights. A lion with a goat's head beside ripped off the head of an injured knight with its sharp fangs, two others were ready to attack but it's snake headed tail wrapped them up squeezing the life out of them in seconds. The archers were found already dead with their blood on the ground, a giant bird the size of the lion with hard lizard scales on its body pecked at their flesh. Banquo growled seeing such good men die like this, holding his hand out he summoned his sword marked with rune symbols on the blade. "Malcolm, use your sealing arts. Bind them in a barrier, but leave an opening large enough for me to finish them off in one attack."
"Yes Master Banquo," The mage held his hand out as his staff appeared in a flash of light; he twirled it in his hands then stabbed it into the ground. A spellcircle formed below the chimera's with magic energy. "Sealing Arts: Virtuous Barrier!"
From the spellcircles, barriers of light began to form around the two monsters. They were trapped inside with little space to move, but right when the two had the upper hand the beasts began to glow in a dark light. The barriers broke like shattered glass before the heinous creatures, Malcolm looked in shock. "They dispelled the barrier?"
"Someone did create them then." Banquo began to wonder what dark magic could create these creatures, but quickly placed his mind back to the fight. "I'll go against the lion, the bird is all yours!"
The rune knight charged to battle, the lion's snake tail lashed out but he quickly dodged; jumping over the whipping tail attempting to take a bite at him and swung his sword. The chimera grabbed the blade with its mouth, swinging its sharp claws at Banquo he quickly let go of his blade jumping into the air above the lion's back. Handspringing off of its back, the night planted a magic rune that began to grow. "Rune Explosion!" The rune exploded leaving the lion staggering on its feet, Banquo landed on his feet as he summoned his sword back into his hands and cutting off the snake tail.
"Fire Sign: Explosive Ring!" Fire began to collect into Malcolm's hand as it began to form a large ring, throwing it at the large bird it homed on to the beast as it tried to fly away. "Kanashibari, bind the beast down!" A spellcircle formed under him as chains fired out and held it in the air as the ring made contact and exploded onto the bird. The smoke from the blast quickly cleared as the chimera flapped its large wings and broke the chains; with another flap of its wings it fired its feathers cutting his arms like knives. "Metal Sign: Sparkling Barrier!" A spell learned from his father, the mage quickly formed a barrier around his body made of shards of metal to protect himself from the bladed feathers. "These things don't die so easily."
"Rising Slash!" Banquo slammed his palm to the ground, the lion chimera jumped a few feet back as four spellcircles on the ground shot out large magical swords in the air. The last sword made its mark cutting off one of its legs falling down right below the bird; this gave the rune knight an idea. "Malcolm, bring the bird down!"
The mage didn't take long to realize what his master had in mind and quickly did as told. "Sealing Arts: Demonic Gravitation!" A large spellcircle began to form under the two chimeras. A powerful gravitational pull grabbed the bird and plummeted right on top of the lion.
"Now come forth!" Banquo raised his sword in the air as light gathered and began to form a large blue blade above him. "Luna Blade!" With a swing of his sword, the giant blade fired and stabbed at the two chimera's disappearing like a firecracker with a rune symbol appearing right after it in a blue aura. The two beasts were battered and bloodied, finally dead at the hands of the two warriors. "Finally, the beasts are dead."
"That was a great plan, Master." Always thinking on his feet, just another thing Malcolm always looked up to him for.
"Now then, how about we go back to those drinks?" Said the rune knight, his student sighed.
"Your ability to be so laid back never ceases to surprise me, Master." Malcolm laughed as they began to walk back to the bar, but making their way a malicious intent overwhelmed them back from the dead monsters. "W-What is that?"
The two looked back as the two chimera bodies began to mold and fuse together, the lion grew as tall as the town's castle as the bird's head became like its helmet and its wings on its back. The dismembered leg from before was already replaced with the bird's. "How, I thought they were dead?"
"The apparitions formed together, keeping each other alive and becoming stronger." Banquo raised his sword ready for action as the newly formed Chimera rose into the air. "Malcolm, fire me up to it."
"Alright," As Banquo made a jump for the beast; Malcolm collected the metal around him into his hand as it formed a large javelin. "Metal Sign: Iron Shard!" Grabbing the javelin, the mage threw it straight for the chimera as Banquo landed and rode with the weapon.
"I'll thank Macduff for this technique later: Armageddon Blade!" Banquo focused his energy as his blade became enveloped in his aura becoming larger and empowered in his magic. He made for a stab at the beasts chest, but the attack was rendered useless; the scales from the bird protected the newest beast giving it the chance to raise its claw and threw Banquo back to the ground.
"Master Banquo!" Malcolm ran toward his master as he struggled to get back up, Banquo's left arm was injured to an extent that blood was dripping from the large cut on the shoulder. "Hold on, I'll heal you."
"Malcolm, look out!" Banquo's warning turned the mage the see the chimera reading to fire a large blast of energy from its mouth.
The beast fired the devastating blast at the two, Malcolm quickly formed a barrier to block the blast but it was too strong; the barrier began to slowly crack until it couldn't take the force anymore and broke away like glass. Luckily, Malcolm was able to form a second layer on the barrier to protect against the blast but the broken shards from the first layer threw back and cut at his arms and stabbed his legs. He kneeled down in pain exhausted from using so much power to defend against the blast; Banquo rose up and stood in front of him. "Malcolm, will you be alright?"
"Yes… I'll be… fine." He said panting heavily. "I can heal these wounds, but it will take a while."
"Rest for now, I'll take care of this myself." The knight readied himself holding his sword with both his good and injured hands.
"Master no, you're still injured."
"I swore to your father I would protect you, that's what I'm going to do!" Running out to get its attention, the chimera dived out to Banquo until one of its wings was suddenly cut clean off. He jumped back as the beast fell down in confusion, looking back in the air he could see the light of steel wire. "Garrote wire?"
"Master, who's that coming from the forest," Malcolm pointed while healing himself to the figure in the dark cloak behind the chimera, the garrote wire that was in the air retracted back into what looked like a black glove. "That came from him?"
"I am the heart of weaponry." The mannish voice came from the cloaked figure, as he held his hand out with a spellcircle appearing below him. "I fight with arms made of blades, and protect with a chest made of armor."
Banquo could hear the man as he became reminded of someone else. 'That chant, it can't be.'
"Weapon Creation: Mythril Spear!" Raising his hand to the air, a flash of light appeared above it as it faded to show a silver spear with a beautiful violet blade.
The chimera roared as it fired its bladed feather's out of its other wing; the cloaked warrior spun his spear around deflecting them as he charged in and cut off its last wing. The lion refused to give up as it attacked the warrior with its claws; he dodged and parried each attack while countering with his spear. The warrior backhanded the beast with his fist, dodging the next blow and hitting its side with the back end of the spear. Malcolm was amazed at the cloaked warrior's skill, and even shocked as he saw the spear cut through the chimera's protective scales. "The blade is made of pure mythril."
The mage looked back to his master beside him as he said that. "That's a strong material said to nullify magic. But it should only nullify magic at least tier three or below."
"That would be if it was regular mythril," Banquo replied. "But his is pure and stronger, it could probably nullify tier five."
"Weapon Creation: Garrote Gloves!" The hooded warrior's hand shined in light as they appeared wearing black gloves, throwing the spear in the air he swung his hands throwing a dozen steel wires that grabbed and held down the chimera. Holding it in place with one hand, the warrior caught his spear in the other hand and began to envelope it in flames. "Tell your master's I'm coming for them! Fire Sign: Blazing Gungnir!"
The warrior threw his spear as it was enveloped in flames and went straight through the chimera, it caused an explosion that blew away the warriors cloak and showed himself to the master and student. "Master Banquo I've never seen someone create weapons so skillfully. Who is that man?"
"It is him," Banquo smiled as he caught a glimpse of the warrior turning to them both. The warrior's black hair tied in a ponytail blew in the wind with a long white scarf around his neck; he wore a sleeveless crimson vest opened to show his muscular toned body of battle scars and white pants with several magic symbols going from top to bottom. Even with all those scars there was not a single one on his face, staring back at the warrior's brown eyes Banquo knew what he thought was true. "The thane of weaponry: Battlemage Macbeth."
"Banquo my old friend, I see you haven't lost your touch." Macbeth smiled as he made his way to his old comrade in arms. Seeing the injury on Banquo's arm, he reached for his pocket and held out a small vile. "Here, drink this you'll feel better."
"An elixir, where'd you get this," He asked drinking the vile anyway, almost instantly the wound on his arm closed off and looked good as new. "But that doesn't matter; it's good to see you again."
"Master Banquo. Who is this man?" Malcolm asked standing up after he fully healed himself.
"You don't remember, I guess it makes since you were only nine at the time," Banquo smiled as he wrapped an arm around his old friends neck. "This is Macbeth; he was a fellow knight and a childhood best friend of mines. As I trained as a rune knight he became a battlemage, though almost the same a battlemage uses magic combined with weaponry more than a rune knight would. His weapon and armor creations gave him quite the title back in the day, but twelve years ago he decided to leave the decadent lifestyle and have a normal life."
Malcolm turned his attention to Macbeth and politely bowed, if he saved their lives and was his master's friend then there was no reason to worry. "My name is Malcolm; it's an honor to meet you."
"The pleasure is mine, though we did meet when you were just a kid." Macbeth could tell the young mage couldn't remember that day but he smiled and waved it off anyway.
"So what brings you back? By the way, where's Lady Macbeth?" Banquo was about to mess with his friend like old times until he saw the grim expression fall upon his face. "What's wrong, did something happen?"
"That's actually the reason why I came here." Macbeth went inside his scarf and held out a necklace holding a glowing red jewel. "Banquo… I need your help."
It was three months ago, my lady and I were living happily in a small village called Krios. I had gone for wood one day like always, but unlike the other days I came back to something terrible; the village was covered in flames and people I knew were found dead in each other's blood. I worried desperately for my wife; my lady was the most important to me and if she was hurt I'd never forgive myself. I ran to my house to see it was the only one not in flame, but it was nearly destroyed in the chaos. "My lady, are you here? Where are you?"
The inside of the house was in shambles with my lady nowhere to be found, but I knew one more place she would be; in building our new home I made a hidden room under the floor boards as a place of safety for her. I quickly found the open boards and made my way down to the room, it was empty except for the chair staring at the wall in the corner but I could see the silhouette sitting in it from where I was. "My lady, are you alright?"
She didn't answer me, I made my way to her slowly as to not startle her. I gently placed my hand on her shoulder but something was wrong; I turned to see around to see her face and saw her eyes emotionless without any color as she stood completely still like a doll. "My lady, wake up. What's wrong with you?"
I began to hear the sound of cackling echoing around us as it grew closer with every second, the darkness in the room grew even darker as I turned to see three womanly figures appear from the shadows. It was easy to tell that they were witches; they were the ones who destroyed the village and were the ones who did this to my love. "Macbeth so good to see you for the first time, is the lady well?"
"You did this to her, tell me why?" I would have killed them then and there, but I needed to know why My Lady was the way she was. "Why destroy the village?"
"Revenge is a dish best served cold," The first witch hissed. "You destroyed all our attempts at killing King Duncan over the years, we decided the best way to sooth our anger would be to turn our attention to you and your wife."
"We drained all of her life energy, but just like you she doesn't seem to give up." The second witch pointed to the jeweled necklace I gave to My Lady as a gift. "As the glow of the jewel begins to dim, when it ceases your Lady Macbeth will die in the sum of three months' time."
"Damn you, filthy witches!" I was at my boiling point, summoning a sword I attacked only to see them disappear back into the shadows. "Come back, fight me dammit!"
"If you like, come and find us." The third witch laughed. "That is, if you want to save your wife's back."
"Ever since then I've searched, trying to find those witches and save My Lady before the time is up." Macbeth brought the jewel back into his scarf so it wouldn't come off.
"Wait, but it's been three months already hasn't it?" Malcolm asked.
"Yes," He nodded. "This is the last day before the jewel's light finally fades away. I only have an hour and a half left, Banquo please help me. Over the months I found a way to defeat the witches by using pure mythril to nullify any magic they could use to protect themselves and I've also found where they're hiding, but I can't fight them alone."
"Macbeth say no more, like I'd say no to my old friend." Banquo smiled turning to his student. "Malcolm, tell your father I'm going to find the source of the chimeras. You stay here and hold the fort while we're gone."
"With all due respect Master, I'm going with you." Malcolm told. "You told me once that two heads are better than one, but also that having more heads are even better. Having three would make it an even match, right?"
Macbeth chuckled. "It looks like you taught him well, Banquo."
"I think all I've done is gave him my stubbornness." The knight said embarrassingly. "Alright then, we'll all go together."
"Good, I knew I can count on you." Macbeth said appreciating their help both. "Banquo, do you remember the Devil's Maw?"
"I do, everybody stay close to me." As the three huddled together, Banquo formed a spellcircle under the three that instantly teleported them from the kingdom.
Meanwhile, inside the castle walls, King Duncan sat at his throne in wait. At the age of fifty two, even old as he was he was considered strong and undefeated in magic with his specialty being metals. He wore the simple outfit of a civilian in the knight's uniform color of red and black, though his had the royal symbol embroidered on the back of his shirt. His grey eyes stared out into the distance until they turned to the left to see another man appear to his left, the man was covered in a black cloak removing his hood to show a middle age face at the age of thirty one. "Macduff, what is it?"
"My lord, I have a message from your son." Macduff answered. "He sent it to me through a familiar he summoned, 'Father, I've gone with Master Banquo and the Battlemage Macbeth to find and stop the source of the chimeras before more come to attack.'."
"So that power was from Macbeth, I knew that flow of magic was familiar." Duncan sighed. "My son should be fine with them, but…"
"My Lord, wouldn't it be better if you went to help them?" Macduff suggested. "This would be the job the king would it not, and helping your son would also be your top priority." He watched as his king was in thought, Macduff knew how much Duncan cared for his son and how guilty he felt for not spending more time with him than he should have over the years.
Duncan rose from his throne as metal gathered over his body and created iron gauntlets over his hand and in it created a large broadsword. "Macduff, can you still sense Malcolm's magic from here?"
"Yes, My Lord." Macduff answered, for no one could track a person's magic better than him.
"Then lead the way." Placing a hand on his knight's shoulder, Duncan and Macduff teleported out of the throne room tracking his son's magic.
In a flash of flight, Macbeth, Banquo, and Malcolm appeared in an area with a large crevasse in the middle. The Devil's Maw was the battlefield of a great war between King Duncan's warriors and an army of monsters, no less created by the three witches. Inside showed the broken blades and scattered remains of many of the honorable men the two older knights fought with. Malcolm stared at the vastness clapping his hands together in a small prayer. "I can feel the lingering spirits here; the witches must be using them for the chimeras."
"Then once we defeat them, they'll finally be at peace." Macbeth made the first step jumping deep into the crevasse. The others followed as they dove deeper and landed on the ground; they found themselves trapped by walls and with no way to go. "They're here, I can feel it."
"What?" Malcolm was a bit confused.
"Focus Malcolm, you can sense their presence can't you?" Banquo serious demeanor returned as he held his sword at his side until needed.
The young mage did as his master told him, focusing his senses as he began to see what he meant. Through magic vision, Malcolm could see a sphere of darkness in front of them made as a seal to hide something inside. "I can see it."
"We have to break through somehow." Macbeth said.
"Leave it to me then," Malcolm held his hand out drawing a spellcircle with his finger. "Sealing Arts: Release!"
The sphere before them began to crack as it finally began to break, inside were the three witches waiting for them. "So you finally came, Macbeth."
"Of course I would, I've come to save my wife." Macbeth stepped forward with a death glare toward the three. "I'm warning you once and only once, if you do not return the life energy to her body… I will kill the three of you."
"Such arrogance from one who only has a few hours left, I doubt you'll-!" The first witch smirked before her cheek was cut by a throwing knife, Macbeth was dead serious.
"As I said… that was your last warning." His voice was cold and murderous, the witch glared as the cut healed instantly.
"You bastard, I thought letting you watch your bitch of a wife die would be enough. But now I believe that killing you will be even better." She said through her teeth.
"Why kill him, devouring him sounds even better. Don't you think so sisters?" The second witch suggested.
"I am famished, and I think these three will hit just the spot."
The three witches' eyes began to glow as they were surrounded in darkness, it grew rising up out of the crevasse. Banquo took out his sword ready for a fight. "It looks like you made them mad, Macbeth."
Venomous roars grew out of the darkness, the darkness beginning to disappear showing a three headed hydra with a humanoid body. It raised a mighty fist and punched at the ground, the three quickly moving back to dodge the rocks that flew at them. "Damn witch, treachery is just another part of their instincts."
"No use getting angry about it, the best thing to do is kill them quickly." Banquo got his sword ready as he caught a stone in his hand, a piece of mythril thrown by Macbeth. He knew that would be the best way to defeat the beast so he transmuted it with alchemy into his sword for extra power.
"Weapon creation: Bow and Arrow!" Macbeth summoned in his hands a long bow with an arrow made of mythril, reading for a shot pointed for the air. "Metal Sign: Iron Arrows!" He fired the arrow as it flew and dove down at the beast, it multiplied into a hundred arrows and each began to hit the hydra. It moved its arm to take most of the hits as its heads began to fire black fireballs.
"Air Sign: Vortex Blast!" Malcolm thrusts his hand firing a blast of wind colliding with the flames and deflecting them to the ground. "By the crimson blaze, allow air to be charred and the ground turned beyond ash! Fire Sign: Pyre Collider!" Spellcircles formed above the monster and fired out blasts of fire from all directions, engulfing it in a wave of flames. Though burned in certain places, the hydra was unaffected as it waved its hand and blew the flames away. "Dammit!"
"Weapon Creation: Garrote Wire!" Macbeth's black gloves appeared in his hands replacing the bow; he swung his hand unleashing a dozen steel strings binding the beast tightening them to make it bleed. "Banquo go!"
"Right," Banquo saw his chance as he jumped up and balanced perfectly on the strings, he ran up to one of the hydra heads and readied his sword. "Armageddon Blade!" His sword enveloped in power, Banquo swung with great force cutting off one of the three heads. He landed back to the others as the head crashed down. "One down and two to go."
"And the next one is mine." Seeing the hydra's hand on the ground to keep itself up, Macbeth took his chance and ran up its arm. "Weapon Creation: War Hammer!" He summoned a large hammer made of mythril as he made his way to the top of the beast and jumped to its second head. "Earth Sign: Skull Crusher!" The hammer became incased in hard rock as he swung dead center on the second head's noggin. The force broke the monsters skull from the inside as it limped down dead as Macbeth landed down with the hammer disappearing. The last head became enraged; it ripped the steel strings as it raised its head in the head and it summoned energy and fired a devastating blast at Macbeth's back.
"Sealing Arts: Dimensional Seal!" Malcolm raised his staff as a black orb appeared in the air and countered the blast, sucking it in until it finally disappeared along with the orb. "I think you made it angry."
"Let it be," Banquo raised his sword as he readied himself to attack. "Are you ready, Macbeth?"
"Weapon Creation: Claymore!" The battlemage waved his hand as a large medieval two handed sword with a mythril blade in his hands. "Ready, let's go!"
The two warriors boosted their jumps with magic flying high above the hydra, it tried to attack Macbeth with a punch in midair but he quickly dodged running down its arm to the head; Banquo diving down towards it as both of their blades enveloped and enlarged by magic. "Warrior's Edge!" The knights slashed simultaneously with their mythril blades, cutting the last hydra head into pieces before they landed back to Malcolm's side. The beasts body stood completely still without any of the three heads controlling it.
"Whew, that was a good work out." Banquo smiled letting his sword disappear back into light. "I'm glad that's over and done with."
"No," Macbeth looked to the jewel around his neck as its shine began to grow dimmer. "Something's wrong, the light in the jewel should be brighter. It's gotten dimmer by the second, we wasted a whole hour fighting and nothing has happened."
"Master, the body is moving!" Malcolm pointed back to the hydra's body, the last head was being ripped off by the arms as the headless body began to mutate. Soon, a dozen heads began to sprout out, shooting deafening roars stronger than the last one.
"They're still alive?" Banquo summoned back his sword in shock.
"Dammit, we're running out of time!" As Macbeth said this, the dozen heads began to charge a devastating blast of energy from their mouths.
"They're about to fire." Malcolm warned.
The mage and rune knight readied themselves until Macbeth quickly stood before them. "Stay behind me. Armor Creation: Knight of Valhalla!" As the monster fired a massive blast of energy, the battlemage's body became enveloped in light and appeared in stunning silver armor decorated with white angelic feathers around the back and waist like a cape and sash. The armor empowered him as it formed a large spellcircle blocking the blast with all his strength, but he knew the blast was too strong for him to hold for any longer. "Banquo, you and Malcolm get out of here now."
"Have you lost your mind?" Malcolm asked.
"Go now, I can't hold it for much longer!" Macbeth saw as his spellcircle began to crack with each second of holding the blast away. "I may have already lost my wife, the least I can do before I die is save the two of you."
"Macbeth, we're not leaving you!" Banquo shouted.
"No you will not!" A voice called out of nowhere, as that happened a large wall of metal fell in front of Macbeth's shield, taking and reflecting the blast of energy the hydra made straight into the sky.
"What?" Macbeth's armor disappeared back into his normal attire as he looked at the wall in amazement. "This metal, it couldn't be…"
"But it is," Stepping down steps of metal came King Duncan himself, he smiled as he stepped down to meet the three. "As king, I must make sure that my fellow knights keep their integrity and not lose them in a wasteful death. That also includes my former knights, Macbeth."
"Your Majesty." Banquo said surprised.
"Father…" Malcolm was at a loss of words, to see his father come to his rescue was something he thought would never happen. But he was happy none the less.
"I'm here son, and I'm here to help." Duncan's smile faded back to a serious expression as he turned back to the hydra. "Macduff, can you find a weakness anywhere?" Macduff teleported beside the king as he looked towards the beast, he sensed the flow of magic through it and found something.
"Yes my lord, its heart is in the middle of its body protected by a casing of protective shields." He answered as he turned to see Macbeth. "It's been awhile, Thane of Weaponry."
"It's good to see you as well, Thane of Strength." Macbeth remembered the knight's skill. Macduff wasn't one to use weapons, so instead he focused more on hand to hand combat and combining it with magic made him a force to be reckoned. "Counting Banquo as the Thane of Runes, it looks like the three thanes are together once again."
"We can defeat the beast by piercing its heart, seems simple enough." Banquo smiled.
"But how, even with your weapons imbued with pure mythril it'll be hard to attack when the hydra keeps moving." Malcolm explained.
"Just leave that to me," Said the king. "While I hold it down, Macduff will launch it into the air with an attack Malcolm will help by amplifying it and also keeping the hydra in the air. Macbeth and Banquo, be ready when the time is right."
"Yes my lord." The two said simultaneously.
"Alright, then here we go: Violent Entanglement!" Duncan's large metal wall transformed shooting out into wires that pierced the wall above them and wrapped itself around the beast, holding it so it wouldn't be able to get away. "Malcolm, now!"
"Kanashibari!" Chains shot out from under the mage, binding the beast even more under their strength. As Macduff charged at it with a fist of green energy, Malcolm quickly summoned the winds and enveloped the knight's fist giving it more power.
"Air Sign: Thundering Wind Hammer!" Macduff attacked the hydra with a powerful uppercut that launched it in midair, the chains and metal wires keeping it there as Macbeth and Banquo readied themselves to attack.
"The night has started lightening. The day will dawn." Macbeth summoned his bow and arrow made of mythril again, holding it steady as he aimed at the beast's heart. "Without regard even for the light of the sun... like an arrow from a fully drawn bow... I fly..." Through his magic chant the arrow began to radiate in a bright light, Banquo held his sword to his side transmuting it into a long spear with the mythril as its blade. "Towards the dead city!"
"Fire now!" Duncan ordered.
The runes on Banquo's spear began to glow as it grew with powerful magic. "Take this: Rune Spear!"
"May all the souls you've used be put to rest, and my wife's back to where it belongs! Sun Sign: Dawn Dispatch!" The two knights fired their attacks as they both pierced through the hydra's shield and made their mark at its heart. The power of Macbeth's arrow burned its insides like it was inside the sun itself until the whole body began to burn on the outside. The beast heads screamed out in pain until it fell and burned to ashes. Macbeth sighed as his bow disappeared in a flash of light. "Finally… it's over."
"Look," Malcolm pointed to the sky as blue spheres of light flew upwards from the Devil's Maw.
"Those are the soul's the witches used for their chimeras, they're free to go to the great beyond and finally be put to rest." Duncan smiled at his son and held him close in the first hug he ever gave him since he was four. "You fought well Malcolm, I'm so proud of you."
"Thanks Father… thanks Dad." Malcolm smiled and embraced his father with his own hug.
"Hey Macbeth, look at your jewel." Banquo pointed back to his friend's scarf, Macbeth pulled out the jewel again and found it shining a bright red like never before.
"I did it, My Lady is alive again." Macbeth said with a toothy smile on his face. "I have to go see her right now."
"Macbeth, if you would I'd first like to ask you something." Duncan stood to the knight and smiled. "How would you and Lady Macbeth like to come back to Clearwater Hollow?"
"What?" He asked.
"It was a shame losing a great like such as you, and we need someone who can help straighten the young ones out." The king held his hand out in hopes of Macbeth taking his offer. "Would you at least think about the offer?"
"No need," Macbeth smiled and shook hands with the king. "King Duncan, I would happily go back and be your loyal knight once again."
"Come on Macbeth, I'll get you back to your wife." Banquo said ready to teleport.
"No, I think I'll just walk there. But there is something you can do for me." He answered.
In the reconstructed village of Krios, inside a bedroom laid Lady Macbeth. She stirred from her long slumber, brushing off her blond hair as she rose from bed and finally realized what happened, she looked at herself in the mirror and smiled. "I'm alive. I'm alive! But how did…" She looked to her lap as she noticed something glowing, the red jeweled necklace from her wedding with a message beside it. Reading it she couldn't help but smile, "Macbeth…"
Be home soon.