He was staying there too late, Berardo knew that. It wasn’t good to spend this much time working a case without rest. He glanced up at the clock and saw it was almost midnight. He might be the only person left in the precinct at this time. Once he had finished getting all his notes done he would leave, he promised himself.
It had been overcast all day and now he could hear the splattering of raindrops outside. The main problem with taking a bike places is that it liked to rain in Listorna and you had to get used to getting wet.
He was trying to remember where he had left his raincoat when the lights in the building all suddenly went out. The room was suddenly plunged into darkness and Berardo had a sudden sensation of dread and reached for his gun.
Then what he really didn’t expect to happen, happened. He heard a woman’s voice. A bit sharp and commanding, “Don’t bother. Your weapon is going to be useless against it. If you want to live you need to follow my instructions.”
He glanced around rapidly trying to figure out where the voice was coming from but he didn’t see anything. Then his eyes were drawn down to his desk where the only source of light was in the entire room. He had initially thought that Kathie’s phone has lit but, which was true but that wasn’t the surprising thing on the desk.
From the light glow of the phone he could see the card that was lying beside it. The red haired woman who had been posing previously was not instead staring at him…. From inside the card. He blinked… then again… and again. It was something he was not prepared to understand.
Then the woman inside the card said, “Stop gawking. It won’t save you from the man who killed my Dreamer. Now quickly, you have to get away. You can’t stop him, not yet. Grab me and the phone.” She looked toward her left, “And the extra pack. You need to make sure he doesn’t get me or them.”
Normally Berardo thought he would have been dumbfounded a little longer but he was a detective and released the severity of the situation he was in. The killer was here, come to take what he had previously failed to find or maybe to silence the talking card lady…. He still had trouble understanding it.
Berardo nodded, “Alright. I have plenty of questions but for now just tell me what I need to know.” He took the phone and pocketed it. The pack quickly joined the phone in his pocket. He then took the card in left hand and glanced around the room.
What was the best way to escape the police precinct. He worked on the second floor. The main stairs seems like a risky option however the back stairs was also a bad plan since that was where the power junction was. If they had cut the power then they would also be waiting there.
The card spoke again, “The person that is hunting us is know as the Cockatrice.”
“Is he alone?”
“No, he has somewhere between two to five servants. I don’t know how many he can control at the same time but it wouldn’t be more than that.”
Six people. That would complicate things. All the standard exits could be covered with that many people. Jumping from one of the windows would be the best option. He began heading east toward the set of meeting rooms next to the east wall. That would be the farthest from any of the entrances from the first floor.
“2751” She said.
“What?” Whispered Berardo as he did a combination crouch and run across the room trying to stay out of sight and still move as fas as he could.
“The password for the phone. 2751. Quickly put it in.”
He fumbled for the phone while moving. “I’m not certain how that is going to help.”
“Do it! Quickly!”
Berardo managed to almost make it to the meeting room before a pair of throwing knifes grazed by him and embedded themselves on the desk just behind him. There was a shadowy figure on the other end of the room in the process of drawing more knifes.
Berardo broke into a run pushing open the door to the meeting room and slamming it shut behind him.
“The phone is unlocked? Is there a purpose to this?” He said, probably louder than he should have.
Berardo reacted instantly dropping down and several knives passed over his head. He swiveled his head. There was a hole in the door where the knives had passed through. Knives shouldn’t be able to pass through a door like that.
“Quickly start the Destiny Burst app and then do your best to survive.” She said.
It all seemed so crazy. How would starting the application help he wondered. However he obeyed pushing down on the application on the phone before shoving it back into his pocket and rolling to one side. More knives sliced into the ground that he was just on. They even cut through the floor, disappearing.
He pulled himself to his feet. There was annoying jingling music coming from his pocket but he ignored it. He kept his eyes on the knife thrower who he still couldn’t quite make out in the darkness. While he watched in case of more incoming knives he backed up toward the windows of the meeting room. They were made of thick glass not something that was easily broken. He had planned on throwing something heavy through them to break it but now had a different plan.
Then the man threw the knives again. The man had been watching as well and this time didn’t plan on missing. There where five knives all coming it at different distances away from him, impossible to escape all of them.
Berardo managed to avoid four of them. The fifth was almost avoid it. He could feel the intense pain in his shoulder as it ripped past him. He couldn’t really feel that arm anymore except for the pain but now was his moment to act. He turned and kicked the window. Normally it wouldn’t have broken under that force but three knives had just pass through it sending cracks all through the glass.
It shattered and Berardo jumped out. He had a short moment to ponder how bad of an idea it was to jump from the second story onto pavement. Then his legs were in pain. He managed to do a little roll like his training had told him to do and then he began to run. The good news was that he didn’t think he shattered his legs. Bad new was that it was still incredibly painful.
He had almost managed to get out of the precinct parking lot when a large object began to swing in from once side. He rolled out of the way avoid it but ending up on his back because one of his arms wasn’t strong enough to hold him up.
The man above him was dressed in a black trench coat and was carrying a scythe. Berardo’s mind didn’t have time to contemplate that but his body reacted. With his one good hand he pulled his gun from its holster and pointed it at the scythe wheilding man.
The entire clip was empty before Berardo realized that the man was not reacting at all to the bullets that where going through his coat. Then the man raised his head and said, “Too bad. Looks like this is the end for you.”
There were bright glowing eyes in the sockets of a skull instead of a face. The skull looked down at him and then raised the scythe to bring it down and end Berardo’s life. Berardo didn’t do anything him mind not yet recovered from the fact that his gun was ineffective against a skeleton. This must by why she said that it was useless to use his gun.
Her…. He realized that he had dropped her card when the skull man attack him. The card was lying in the wet pavement a few feet away from him. It was hopeless.
Then the phone in his pocket played a tune. A happy hopeful sound that somehow pierced through the soft sound of the rain.
Then her card began to glow. The skull man had been about to cut Berardo in half instead quickly glanced in that direction too following Berardo’s gaze. Then an eruption of fire poured out of the card and out of it came the woman. Not as a card but full human size. A tall woman with blazing red hair.
“Looks like you lasted long enough. Good job.” She said. In one of her hands was a sword wreathed in fire. She lunged toward the skeleton man who pulled backward getting out of range of both her and Berardo. Then she lifted Berardo with her other hand.
“Sorry Reaper but I’m not letting you have him.” Then she jumped. Leaping beyond human capably. A blazing woman practically flying away from the police precinct, taking Berardo with her.
It was all too much for Police Detective Berardo Abarca. Too impossible. Too insane. And without the adrenaline to fuel him he fainting.
How to play Destiny Burst
It was the morning sun shining through the misty morning that woke Berardo up. His body was still full of aches and pains as he pushed himself up. He was outside somewhere, it looks like one of the many parks in Listorna. The views from Listorna’s parts was always magnificent.
Given that he was waking up in such a place he knew that the events of last night could not have been a dream. He could actually feel his left arm, at least a little but he thought that it was broken. Not a good sign. Although it seemed to have been bandaged while he slept.
Berardo looked around and saw her. She was sitting in the grass with her back up against a tree sleeping. Like that she almost looked normal, he could almost pretend that she hadn’t been inside a card when he had first seen her or burst out of the card in a tornado of flames while holding a sword. In fact he couldn’t see that sword anywhere and while previously she had been wearing some fantastical outfit now she looked to be wearing normal clothing.
He wondered for a brief moment where she had gotten those clothes but it was one of the least important questions. Instead he let her continue to sleep and pulled out the phone that was still in his pocket. He put in the password again and glanced over the screen. There were a bunch of apps that you would normally expect and then there was the Destiny Burst.
That was the same name that was on the pack, the name of the mysterious card game. He clicked the app and that unusual tune played once more. Then the screen showed two orbs or maybe crystals, something that. One of them was was pulsing, spinning, and had a symbol of a red rose placed over the bottom half of it and the other was just slightly glowing but was other wise had nothing special about it.
There also seems to be an almost transparent crystal next to them. There was text that said 3% although Berardo didn’t know what that could mean. There seemed to be some other tabs that he could click on but before he could find out what was on them he heard her voice call out to him.
“Ah, your awake. Good. I was worried that your injuries would keep you out for longer. I wouldn’t know what to do about if you had kept sleeping.”
Finally Berardo managed to ask some of the questions that he had desperately wanted to ask, “What the hell happened last night?”
“Cockatrice wanted to finish the job. Capture or dispose of me and retrieve the phone. You were just in the way.”