Final Chapter the Warrior

Chapter 7


Peter’s body was wind as he moved through the trees of the forest where he promised to meet Thomas Reed. The landscape was flat, but the trees were several feet in diameter allowing Peter plenty of cover. With a handgun gripped firmly in his right hand and a smoke grenade gripped in his left, Peter felt as though there was no one who could stop him. Thomas had experienced the same training as Peter, but Thomas had been gone from NOTCH for over ten years so his skills were most likely out of practice. Never the less, Peter was not insolent enough to believe that he would be able to kill Thomas with any type of ease. Overconfidence was a deadly weapon for one’s opponent, and Peter knew very little about Thomas’s method of fighting.

Undoubtedly, Thomas was planning something for he would not have told Peter his location thus giving Peter a chance to prepare without somehow benefiting himself. Peter’s instincts told him it was a trap, and he would be surprised if it wasn’t. However, as much as Peter hated walking into traps, he knew it was better than the alternative. If he failed to fight Thomas, then Thomas could easily go after Molly or Rodrick, neither of whom deserved to die. They had invited Peter into their home, and Peter had done nothing to reward their kindness, at least not until a few hours ago. Before he left Rodrick and Molly’s house, Peter had written a two-million dollar check and left on the dining room table beside a note that explained that there was a high probability that he would be unable to return. Peter knew that he should have told them in person, but he knew it would just make things worse since they would only attempt to talk him out of fighting Thomas and Peter did not want to dwell on his impending battle any more than necessary.

This was it. This was Peter’s big fight. If there was anybody who could pose a threat to Peter, it was Thomas Reed. All Peter had to do was kill Thomas and he would have overcome his final obstacle. This was what it all had been building towards. Every decision Peter had made had led him to this battle. Peter’s life had purpose, but he felt hollow inside. It was as if his organs had been removed leaving nothing inside his body, and it hurt him more than a hundred bullets could because when bullets hit him, he knew how to feel. This feeling of emptiness left him with nothing, and Peter could only imagine what his life would be like if he had to live with that feeling of emptiness. Still, Peter could not think about that now for Thomas was lurking somewhere in the forest, poised to kill Peter the second Peter made a mistake.

The woods were quiet as if all the animals had sensed the impending battle and fled. It should have made Thomas’s movements easy to hear, but the only sound Peter could hear as he moved from tree to tree was the sound of his own heartbeat. Suddenly, a dark figure rose out from inside a thorn bush with leaves so thick that no one could see through it. Peter cursed himself for missing the very obvious hiding spot, and before Peter could react, a sharp pain shot through his body. Immediately, he realized that he had been hit with a fast-acting tranquilizer, and he stumbled onto his knees. In a desperate attempt to take out the dark figure, Peter pointed his gun at the position where the dark figure would be located if he was moving towards Peter, but the dark figure was already on top of him. A millisecond before Peter’s finger closed around the trigger, a foot shot out and struck him in the face, and everything went black.

For how long he was unconscious, Peter did not know, but when he regained consciousness, he was sitting down against a very large, oak tree. The grass beneath Peter’s butt was moist from the rain the previous night, and he tasted blood in his mouth. He opened his eyes to see that he was still in the forest and that sitting against another oak tree a dozen feet away from his was the dark figure that had attacked him. This time however, the dark figure was sitting in the sunlight allowing Peter to see his rugged, grey facial hair, his dark, black skin, and his skintight camouflage outfit that was almost identical to the one Peter was wearing. Undoubtedly, this man was Thomas Reed, but if that was the case, why was Peter still alive?

“Ah, you’re awake.” Thomas’s lips barely moved when he spoke allowing his face to keep it’s threatening scowl. “I see you didn’t heed my advice. You know I would have spared you and your friends if you had not come to fight me. I have no love for Rex Darkstar, and I have even less for his petty son bent on revenge.”

“You’re Thomas Reed?” Peter asked as he arched his back and found that Thomas had failed to take away the gun that Peter had strapped to his hairless back underneath his camouflage outfit, and Peter knew that if he could get Thomas talking to the point where he got distracted, he might be able to withdraw his gun and fire before Thomas could shoot him. Thomas had a handgun similar to Peter’s gripped loosely in his left hand, but his finger was not on the trigger meaning he was not prepared to shoot Peter.

“Don’t play dumb with me,” Thomas replied in a manner that gave the impression that he had not slept in days. “I know what you’re thinking, and if you think you’re fast enough, we can see who draws their gun faster.”

“What do you want,” Peter sighed after a moment realizing that he was not going to be able to surprise Thomas.

“Death, adventure, purpose,” Thomas muttered. “I’m a broken man, Peter Saneto.  The only thing I want is to be fixed, but I won’t allow myself because, at the same time, I don’t want to be fixed. I’m a broken man, and if I am no longer broken, will I still be who I am?”

“I don’t know what this has to do with me?” Peter asked curiously.

“Eh, I guess I thought it would help to talk to another broken person,” Thomas shrugged. “Maybe, I was dissatisfied with how quickly I bested you. Maybe, I want a rematch.”

“Why do you want that?” Peter asked, baffled. “If we fight, I could kill you.”

“I was thinking the exact same thing.” Thomas smiled a thin smile. “You know, I reckon you and I aren’t so different. We both left NOTCH against our will, we both have family and friends who we itemize, and we are both cowards.”

“I’m not a coward,” Peter snarled. Causing a devious smile to creep upon Thomas’s face.

“Oh, so that’s the one you get mad about. Sounds like that’s the only one you disagree with,” Thomas replied cause Peter’s face to turn red. “No, I’m not calling you a coward in the sense that you avoid monsters or killers. I’m calling you a coward because you are unwilling to face your fears. Sadly, if you are anything like me, you never will.”

“I’m not afraid of anything,” Peter retorted as he impatiently rose to his feet.

“That’s what I kept saying,” Thomas sighed, clearly lost in deep thought. “There was always something. Always another villain. Sometimes they were villainous, and sometimes they weren’t. I needed them, and that was all that mattered. Eventually, I thought I was done, but the second my brother set me up with the girl of my dreams, I left. To be honest, I don’t even remember my motive. I just know that I couldn’t face the possibility of what awaited me if I settled down. My whole life, I fought for my country. I fought against countless enemies until fighting became a part of me. I was trained as a soldier to fight the injustice. I am a warrior, and warriors fight. If I don’t keep fighting, am I still a warrior? If I’m not a warrior, who am I? If I don’t act like Thomas Reed, am I Thomas Reed. If I’m not Thomas Reed, what am I?”

A dead silence filled the forest, and Peter found himself wordless. The way Thomas spoke was one of defeat and acceptance like he had already given up on trying to help himself. Yet, there was undeniable truth enwoven into the words, and Peter couldn’t help but feel like Thomas was describing him. As if in a trance, Peter emotionlessly stared at Thomas as Thomas continued his monolog.

“I don’t fear dying because I know what happens when I die, but if I stop fighting, will I cease to exist? In the end, I’m just too afraid to find out.” Thomas’s eyes dulled as he gazed at Peter. “I’m afraid, Peter Saneto. I’m afraid of the unknown.”

“Because of your fear, you can’t move with your life,” Peter muttered, finishing Thomas’s monolog. “The life outside NOTCH isn’t something we know, and that is why we’re both here.”

“Aye,” Thomas responded as he pushed himself to his feet. “I could have killed you, and you could have killed Rex Darkstar’s son before he hired me. Subconsciously, this is what we both want. A final standoff with the one other person of equal skill. Draw your gun, and lets settle this here. There’s no reason both of us have to suffer any longer.”

“Agreed.” Peter nodded as he withdrew the handgun strapped to his back. “Standard one on one. Last man standing.”

“May the best man win.” Thomas smiled warmly. “And, Peter Saneto, if you kill me, I wish you a better life than mine.”

“I think we both know that isn’t going to happen,” Peter sighed gloomily.

“Perhaps, but you are a warrior, Peter Saneto,” Thomas shrugged. “If you keep fighting your death, then you will never live. However, if you fight for yourself, then maybe, this time, things will be different.”

“I guess one of will never know,” Peter replied as Thomas led Peter towards a large clearing that had to be at least 100 feet in diameter. When they reached the clearing, the two men exchanged a look and each set their watches to release a beeping sound in one minute. When he reached his end of the clearing, Peter took a deep breath and turned to face the trees putting his back to Thomas who had done the same thing. As he stood with his back facing the man who would probably kill him, Peter recalled his time in NOTCH. It felt like such a long time since he had joined NOTCH. This was the end of Peter Saneto. If he lost, he would die, and if he won, he would slowly disappear as Thomas was disappearing.

The sound of Peter’s watch beeping drew Peter out of his thoughts and he spun around to face Thomas and found that Thomas had done the same. For a split second, the two adversaries faced each other motionlessly, and then, the air became filled with the sound of a single gunshot. The bullet travelled through the air, striking its target straight through the heart, and Peter smiled.


The Warrior: Short Story

Chapter 6


“He’ll hunt you down for this. He’ll kill you and everyone you know.” What a laughable idea. Rex Darkstar was nothing to Peter, and Peter had proved that when he put a bullet through the sleeping demon. His left arm still hurt from where a bullet had grazed him, and his legs were slightly sore from scaling several barbed fences. Still, to think such revered man could be killed so easily. It was actually rather disappointing With Rex Darkstar dead, the Wolf Men would likely crumble.

Peter’s eyes were heavy from lack of sleep. It had taken Peter eight hours to drive to Rex Darkstar’s house, two hours to infiltrate and assassinate, and another eight hours to drive back. The house had been reasonably guarded by small set of guards, but Peter had killed almost all of them. Looking back, Peter realized that he probably should have used a pillow to smother Rex instead of shooting him since the gunshot drew the attention of the guards whom he had stealthily worked so hard to get past on his way inside. If he had just used the pillow, he wouldn’t have had to kill the guards, but in the end, it didn’t matter. Rex Darkstar was dead, and that was that.

All that was left now was for Peter to win Alison’s heart without interruption. The Wolf Men adventure had set him back, but he was determined not to let her slip through his fingers, not again. He would fight to the ends of the Earth for her. If only she knew the love in his heart, it would be easy, but life was never easy for Peter. His life was one obstacle after another, and he had been in the cycle for over thirty years. He had never had a moment of peace until he left NOTCH, and even then, problems kept finding him.

His bed was warm, and he had been laying in it for some time, the thought of leaving its warmth terrifying. Still though, he could not live the rest of his life under the heavy, green blanket which hid him from the harsh cold of his surrounding environment. Hours might have past, but Peter did not mind. The warmth was something he needed, and he would spend years engulfed in the warmness of the blanket if he could. Sadly, his old age eventually told him that he must leave the warmth through the growling of his stomach.

After taking a long sigh, Peter flung his legs out of the bed and quickly stumbled out of the room that used to belong to Edward Steed. At the time, he didn’t know where he was going as his feet mindlessly brought him from room to room. Eventually, he found himself in the kitchen. Alison was in the kitchen, her slender body pressed against a counter as she reached a hand up for a pitcher that was resting on top of a cabinet several feet above the counter.

“I got it,” Peter said as he stepped up beside her and grasped the pitcher with the tip of his fingertips. He gently pulled it off the top of the cabinet and handed it to Alison who smiled warmly.

“So, where’d you go last night?” Alison quietly asked as she pushed the pitcher under the sink nozzle and began filling it up with water. When Peter didn’t answer, she continued, this time in a much grimmer tone. “Did it have something to do with the Wolf Men?”

“Yes,” Peter stoically responded, “but it’s over now.”

“It’ll never be over with you, Peter,” Alison sighed, her eyes dulled with defeat. “There will always another battle you have to fight.”

“Alison, it’s over.” Peter clutched her shoulders in his handsand turned her towards him. “I’m done.”

“You said you were done before, but that didn’t stop you,” Alison replied. “Nothing will stop you.”

“That’s not true,” Peter responded, his heart pounding. “I’d stop for you.”

At first Alison was silent, and then, she gloomily responded. “No, you wouldn’t. Deep down, you’re still the same kid I met at summer camp. You want adventure and can’t live without it.”

“You… what?” Peter uttered after a long pause, his mind spinning. All this time, she had known?  It was impossible. Surely, she would have said something, or maybe she did. His head hurt. “When?”

“You don’t remember?” Alison asked with a curious expression on her face. “What happened that night, do you remember?”

“I… I,” Peter stuttered as he began to recall the eve of Alison and Rodrick’s wedding. He had driven Rodrick back to his hotel room and had stopped by Alison’s room to talk to her. She had been drinking and had a look in her eyes like she was going to kiss him. She had asked him how he felt about her, and he had answered more honestly than he had before or since. He told her how he loved her but how being married wasn’t about love. He told her he knew he would never be happy with her and she would never be happy with him. His life at the time was at NOTCH and that was the only life he wanted. Her life was in some regular town with Rodrick and that was the only life with which she would be happy.

The memories flushing back made Peter’s head hurt as if he had been drunk the past few days. Peter placed a hand on his head and clenched his jaw in agony. His memories were telling him one thing, but his mind was telling him another thing. If he didn’t want Alison in the past, why was he was he so willing to fight for her? He loved her, so of course they would be happy together. Why did he think differently in the past? What more was needed for him then?

“Peter.” Peter was driven out of his thoughts by Alison’s voice. He glanced up and found her sympathetic eyes staring at him, and this time it was his shoulders clutched in her hands. “Are you okay?”

“Give me… time,” Peter muttered, and he staggered out of the kitchen figuring that it was best that Alison was not near him in case he lost control in a fit of frustration. His eyes were closed while he moved throughout the house, but when he opened them he still found himself in Edward Steed’s old room. Alone, he clenched his fists so hard that he felt blood fill his palms. For how long, he struggled between his memories and his brain, he did not know, but his thoughts were interrupted by a faint jingling sound from his phone. Desperate to escape the conflict growing inside his head, Peter grasped the phone with a bloody hand and answered the call.

“Hello, is this Peter Saneto?” A gruff voice on the other end asked before Peter could open his mouth. The voice sounded vaguely familiar to him, but Peter could not place it.

“Yes, who is this?” Peter responded collectedly, careful not to give anything away.

“My name is Thomas Reed,” the gruff voice replied, and Peter immediately recognized the name. Thomas Reed had retired fifteen years prior and had been one of the men who had inspired Peter during his time at NOTCH. Peter hadn’t heard anything about Thomas Reed since Thomas left NOTCH, but from what Peter already knew, if Thomas was calling him, then it was a matter of life or death. “I have a dire warning for you.”

“What is it?” Peter asked nervously, his heart beating in excitement.

“The Wolf Men are angry regarding the death of their leader and have hired an assassin to kill you,” Thomas replied causing Peter to wonder who was in command of the Wolf Men. Fortunately, Thomas answered Peter’s question with his next sentence. “Apparently, Rex Darkstar’s son, Henry Darkstar, wants you dead for killing his father.”

“How does he know it was me?” Peter asked curiously.

“He doesn’t but it didn’t take me long from looking at the evidence.” Thomas’s voice cut deep into Peter’s skin as a realization dawned on him.

“They… hired you?” Peter asked, but he already knew the answer.

“You catch on quick,” Thomas responded emotionlessly. “I just wanted to make sure I had the right guy.”

“Why… why are you doing this?” Peter asked as he silently scolded himself for letting his guard down and allowing Thomas to so easily confirm his guilt.

“Same reason you are going to fight me tomorrow between the hours of ten and twelve in the forest ten miles north of where you reside.” Thomas answered with a statement that was not an answer. “Good luck, Peter. For your sake, I hope I don’t see you.” For the last sentence, Thomas actually sounded like he cared about Peter, and Peter wondered whether the last sentence was supposed to be a taunt or advise. Before Peter could reply, Thomas ended the call, leaving Peter with his feelings of confusion, worry, and strangely, relief.

Although the conversation had nothing to do with Rodrick or Alison, his mind felt clearer. He loved Alison, but she wasn’t his. She would never be his. He had known that the day of the wedding, and he had known that the second she started dating Rodrick. Why he did not remember this was a mystery to him. Perhaps, he was trying to protect himself from the cruel reality that he couldn’t help her. The mind is built to protect the body. When air can’t travel through a person’s throat, the mind makes him cough. When a person cuts himself, the mind tells him he’s in pain. When a person needs a purpose to live, the mind fabricates a lie.

The lies were over now, and Peter had a destiny to fulfill. Thomas Reed had become a monster, and it was up to Peter to prevent Thomas from killing any more people. Peter clenched his fist tight and held it up to the ceiling in a silent vow to the heavens. Whether or not he would be able to beat Thomas, Peter did not know, but by tomorrow night, one of them would be dead.

The Warrior

Chapter 5

It was raining today, and water droplets slowly dripped down off Peter’s face. His clothes were wet, and for a moment, he thought it might be blood. He was standing several feet from the Myriad, a nightclub owned by John Divoon, the person who without a questionable doubt ordered the execution of Connell Knight. John Divoon lived near the gas station where Connell was shot and was one of the chief members of the Wolf Men which meant that he would be in charge of collecting the debt that Connell owned him. Peter had asked Rodrick and Alison about John Divoon, and they told him not to confront Divoon prompting him to lie about what he was doing tonight.

A large man stood by the door. He wore a night, black sweatshirt and sunglasses that made him blend into the surrounding darkness. His face was concealed by his scowl, and he was twice as large in the belly as Peter. A hood hid his hair, and Peter could see the man’s muscles through his sleeves.

“What brings you here?” The man’s voice boomed so loud that Peter was confident he could have heard it if he had stayed at Alison and Rodrick’s house. “Club’s closed tonight.”

“I’m here to talk to John Divoon,” Peter replied undaunted by the man’s size and tone.

“About what?” he asked with an uninterested expression. “What’s your name?”

“Tim,” Peter answered for he knew he couldn’t use his real name. If someone knew that Peter used to be part of NOTCH, he would be gunned down before he got within ten feet of Divoon. “Timothy Knight. I’m a cousin of Connell Knight, and I’m here to settle his payment.”

“Do we know a Connell Knight?” the man asked into a mic that stretched down from his sunglasses, and his question was followed by several minutes of silence. Eventually, the front door swung open to reveal a skinny man in a black suit and tie.

“Pat him down,” the smaller man ordered in a voice that did not carry, but the bigger man understood him anyway and immediately stepped forward. Peter extended his arms horizontally as the big man’s hands ran up and down Peter’s body.

“He’s clean,” the big man said as he stepped backwards, and the smaller man motioned for Peter to follow him inside. Peter obediently did as he was bid while the bigger man remained outside to guard the front door. Inside the Myriad, there was a small hallway that led to a large, circular room. The Myriad was four stories tall, but the only doors were on the first and third stories. A small staircase to the left led to the third story, and to the right stood a bar with nearly every type of liquor one would expect to see at a club. On the third story, there were only two doors. One was to the right next to the top of the staircase, and the other was on the opposite side of the room. There was only one path to the second door, and it was across a large, metal bridge that stretched diagonally across the circular room. In the center of the bridge which was also the center of the circular room, there was an empty DJ booth.

Three men were spread out inside the circular room. One was standing guard at the bottom of the staircase with a gun in his hand. The second was pacing back and forth in the center of the room just under the DJ booth. The third was slouching against the far wall with a bottle of some alcoholic beverage clutched loosely in his right hand. From the looks of them, only the guard at the stairs was currently on the clock for neither of the other two were armed. Peter could have taken out all of the men in the room, including the skinny man who was currently leading him, but he did not come to kill replaceable thugs. He had come to help people, and the only way to do that was to kill John Divoon.

The skinny man led Peter up the staircase and across the bridge, the metal creaking upon every step that Peter took. When the two reached the wooden door at the far end of the room, the skinny man knocked three times lightly. The door swung open to reveal three people. The first person was a large man that looked like he had been in the army. His hair was neatly shaven in a blond buzz cut. His fingers were curled in a way that it looked like he was strangling someone. His dark, blue eyes showed nothing but malice. He wore a white tank top and a pair a light, blue jeans. A small, red scar ran along his right cheek, and Peter suspected it was from a knife wound.

The final two people were wearing black suits and ties that matched the skinny man’s outfit. They were both physically fit, but Peter could take them both on in a fight. One stood by the door while the other stood next to the first man who appeared to be the leader. The one closer to Peter had a saddened frown on his puffy lips whereas the other one looked indifferent.

“So, you’re a friend of… what’s his name?” the man with the tank top said as he stepped behind a glass desk that was littered with paper forms.

“Connell Knight,” Peter stoically replied.

“And he owes us what… 12,000 dollars?” The man’s bottom lip scraped back and forth against his two front teeth.

“Yes, I have come to pay his debt since he no longer can,” Peter responded as he reached into his jacket pocket and pulled out a group of ten 100 dollar bills. Peter had split up the money into twelve different stacks in order to keep the guards at the front from finding the stacks. He tossed the first stack onto the glass desk in front of the man. “I assume you’re John Divoon.”

“And I assume you have the rest of the money,” John Divoon replied as he eyed the cash on the desk, greedily.

“Yes,” Peter said calmly as he emotionlessly withdrew two more stacks from his jacket and set them down on the glass table. “And I am willing to pay more if you tell me the name of the person you hired to kill him.”

“What?” John asked with a puzzled expression.

“Connell Knight,” Peter replied with an ice, cold gaze. “Who did you send to kill him?”

“He’s dead? Well, perhaps it was for the best,” John chuckled and gestured to the skinny man who stood next to Peter. “After all, had I got to him first, he probably would have turned out like Snake over here.”

Snake lowered his head in response to John’s comment, and at that moment, John noticed that scars ran up and down the man’s face and that half his fingers were missing. A single tear dripped out of Snake’s right eye, and upon seeing it, John smiled.

“Come on, Snake, is that any way to behave in front of our guest,” John chuckled mockingly, and after several seconds of silence, he turned his attention back to Peter. “Snake used to be one of my most reliable assets until he forgot his place as my pawn.”

“What did you do to him?”

“I simply made him repay his debt with blood and…” John started as he leaned back confidently in his chair, but he was interrupted when Peter lunged backwards and slammed into the guard to the right. The guard was caught between Peter’s right shoulder and the wall, and the impact unleashed a loud cracking sound as his left ribcage shattered. John Divoon was slow to react, but the second guard drew his gun almost immediately and pointed it at Peter. However, Peter had already predicted the guard’s actions and grasped the jacket of the incapacitated guard. Before a shot could be fired, Peter hurled the guard’s body at his comrade who was able to get off a single shot before the bodies collided. Fortunately for Peter, the bullet sent from the guard’s gun found its mark in the head of the guard that Peter had hurled across the room covering the velvet carpet with a puddle of crimson blood.

The standing guard made a pig-like grunt as the blood coated body of his comrade crashed into him sending him staggering back into the wall behind him. Peter advanced on him as John Divoon arose from his chair with a foot-long dagger in his right hand. John took a stab at Peter’s exposed side, but Peter lurched to the side causing John to stagger awkwardly past him. With nothing between him and the guard, Peter sprang forward and slammed his closed fist into the guard’s gut. The blow caused the guard to hunch over into Peter’s left fist which was aimed to deliver a finishing blow. The room became filled with the sound of bones cracking and blood being forced out the guard’s nose as Peter’s fist connected with the guard’s face. Although the guard weighed at least fifty more pounds than Peter, the impact lifted his body a full foot off the ground. With a heavy crash, the guard’s body plummeted onto the ground, unconscious. Peter whirled around to face John Divoon who had a look of pure terror and surprise on his face, but even in his most feeble state, he was still a bloodthirsty monster. Peter advanced on his foe who desperately scrambled out the door. Before following John out the door, Peter wrestled the gun from the unconscious guard’s grasp and cast a quick glance at Snake who had curled up in a corner, whimpering.

Peter emerged onto the metal bridge to see that John had rallied the four people who Peter had already seen, and they all had handguns pointed up at Peter. Peter did not pause to aim and randomly fired a shot in their direction. Although the shot did not make contact with one of his enemies, it served its purpose which was to frighten the men reducing their accuracy. Peter dashed across the metal bridge with his gunned aimed at the large guard who had greeted him at the entrance to the Myriad since he was the biggest target. Peter’s finger closed around the trigger, and the man’s shoulder exploded in a mixture of blood and chunks of flesh. The man collapsed onto the ground as Peter dove behind the DJ equipment giving him a little bit of cover.

For a moment, everything was quiet, and then, abruptly several gunshots rang overhead, and several bullets crashed through the DJ equipment, all missing Peter. Most people would have stayed in cover until their enemy ran out of bullets and had to reload, but amidst the gunshots, Peter heard the very miniscule sound of metal creaking which told him that one of the guards was making his way up the stairs to hit Peter from the side. Peter was ready though and turned his gun towards the spot where the staircase ended. The second the man’s head appeared, he was dead, and his body limply tumbled down the stairs. With three opponents left, Peter waited for another bullet to be fired in order to use the sound and angle to determine the position of the person who fired it, and then, he sprung up and fired two shots at the spot where he assumed a person would be standing. As fast as he fired the two shots, Peter ducked down behind the DJ equipment and quickly received the sound of John Divoon screeching in pain.

The sound of John’s cry of agony filled Peter with a feeling that felt like happiness, but it also filled Peter with grief for he knew the sound would soon stop. Peter remained behind the equipment for several seconds before emerging out of cover with his gun raised. He quickly found that John Divoon was rolling back and forth on the ground, and the other two had fled. Slowly, Peter crept across the bridge and down the stairs. Peter advanced toward John Divoon whose white tank top had been dyed red by his blood. Peter put a foot on John’s chest, and John yelped in pain. Peter leaned forward so that John could gaze into his eyes.

“Justice is served,” Peter uttered as he raised a gun to John’s head.

“You’re dead, punk,” John spat with his painfilled voice. “He’ll hunt you down for this. He’ll kill you and everyone you know.”

“Who?” Peter asked to draw out the moment for he already knew who John was talking about. “Who do you work for?”

“Rex Darkstar,” John answered, and Peter saw a glimmer of hope in his demon-like eyes. “If you let me live, I can keep him from going after you.”

“I’m not afraid of you. What makes you think I’ll be afraid of him?” Peter pressed the gun to John’s head and, after a moment of silence, pulled the trigger.

Creating and Implementing a Character

Hi, so as a quick introduction, these are the three stages to creating a character and implementing them into the story that I use while writing.


Each character has something that makes them different from the others, even if it’s only slightly. If they are a one off character, then they’re personality can be forgettable and don’t necessarily need to continue this step, but if they are a recurring character or a main character, then the creator needs to establish what separates them from the others in terms of personality. To do this, I suggest making a list of every other recurring or main character’s dominate trait such as anger, greed, love, intelligence, strength, bravery, or leadership. If characters have multiple dominate traits, that’s fine, just keep the amount sort of short so it doesn’t get confusing. Once that is done, assign the new character a dominate trait that differs from the other dominate trait and determine how to best show that dominate trait. The simplest way to show the dominate trait is to have a “defining character moment” when the character is introduced. This is where a character makes a decision that either goes against what the people around him or her are doing or what the other main or recurring characters would do in the situation. Some examples are Deku from My Hero Academia when he runs in against the sludge villain holding Kacchan because of his pure desire to help people, L when he tricks the “protagonist” into giving away information that no one else had obtained yet, and Captain America in his first movie when he defends the troops and then refuses to surrender while being beaten by a bully.


Next the creator should determine where the character should appear in the story. This is best done by creating an outline of the story and determining what is needed at each point in the story and how it is related to the character’s traits. For example, you should insert a character with an antagonist personality into a scene requiring an antagonist. Once you’ve marked down all the places, you not only know where to put the character, you now know the character’s role.


Finally, the creator should determine why the character, on an in universe level, is there. That means why the character is in the position on a story level. A repeated complaint of some stories is that side characters and less important main characters just seem to appear where the plot requires without them having any motive or reason. A good way to fix this is to try to tell the story from the character’s perspective. Now this does not mean it has to be a stand alone story with its own beginning, heroes, villains, arcs, and climax, but there should be a train of events that make sense and connect to each other. This is also a good tool for world building.


Once again, thanks a ton.

The Warrior

Chapter 4


Peter’s eyes were stiff, and his head hurt. He had stayed with Alison and Rodrick for over a week, and nothing much had happened aside from Peter sparring with Rodrick for Alison’s affection. The white-water rafting trip had been enjoyable, but Andrea Jarvis was not. She hadn’t been unkind or dull, but she was not for Peter. Still though, she had been one of Alison’s closest friends for over two decades and had even been one of Alison’s bridesmaids, so Peter could do little aside from playing his role as the kind, sincere friend who neither showed attraction nor distaste. Even with such constrictions, his performance had been brilliant, and he had eluded Rodrick’s attempt to dispose of him. However, it was only a matter of time before Rodrick tried to get rid of him again, but Peter was smarter and knew the game better than Rodrick. Rodrick had already started talking to Alison about people who they could pair with Peter, but Peter could hear them through the walls and had already put pieces in motion to remove all the girls that Rodrick and Alison had considered for him. From faking an email of an ex-boyfriend to convincing a wealthy employer in another state to offer a job too good to pass up, Peter had countered Rodrick perfectly, and Rodrick had no idea that he was behind it.

Upon Alison and Rodrick’s request, Peter had taken a temporary job at Rodrick’s Seven Eleven. The pay was mediocre, but the hours were good. He left at the same time as Alison and Rodrick, but he came back two hours before Rodrick and one hour before Alison. Rodrick always arrived home at six, so it was left to Alison and Peter to cook dinner. Alison had cooked alone the first night, but Peter learned quickly and had assisted her the other nights. She was elegant when she cooked, and she was more elegant when Peter helped her.

Living with Alison and Rodrick had allowed Peter to learn things about them. Years of living with Rodrick had caused Alison to lose her sense of adventure, but Peter knew that he could restore it. All he had to do was prove to her that she loved him more than she loved Rodrick. Each day, Peter found himself in a new argument with Rodrick, and most days, it was Peter who Alison supported. Alison occasionally sided with Rodrick, but Rodrick was playing against a man who was his superior in every way. Yet sadly, it was Rodrick who shared Alison’s bed and Peter who was forced to suffer in silence. He had spent many long nights staring at the ceiling wondering how the world could be so unjust to both him and Alison, but the white ceiling of Edward Steed’s room had given him no response. In truth, there was no response that justified the unjust situation, but Peter was used to unjustness. Peter’s time at NOTCH had taught him how to fight the wrongs that the world forced upon him. He had lived his life a good man, and it was time that he was rewarded. He wasn’t asking for any help. He never asked for help. He just wanted to feel like the world wasn’t against him, but perhaps, it was for the best if the world was against him. It had been against him his entire life so it was fitting that it was against him when he finally triumphed, and Peter’s time of triumph was almost upon him.

He could feel Alison growing closer to him every time they talked. Each long, heartfelt conversation they shared lingered in Peter’s head, and he knew that the day when he would take Alison’s hands in his and tell her how he felt was drawing near. Neither Rodrick nor the heavens could stop their passion, but Peter welcomed them to try with all their might. He was ready. Soon, Peter would finally fulfill his mission in life to rescue Alison and…

Peter’s head became a daze, and he suddenly found himself in the kitchen. His feet were sore, and Peter was left wondering how long he had been wandering about the house. He glanced at his watch and saw that the hour hand was near five. He knew Alison would be home within fifteen minutes unless something went awry at her job. Perhaps a fire had broken out, but the odds of that occurring were small. Still though, Peter had his phone gripped firmly in his right hand in case someone called and needed something. Sadly, no one called, and to pass the time, Peter started reading the local paper. What he found startled him.

Near the back of the newspaper, there was an article about a man who had been killed at a local gas station. The article said that the police have no leads on who the robber was who shot the man, but Peter knew something the police did not. The dead man’s name was Connell Johnson, and Rodrick had mentioned him in a conversation that he and Peter had shared several days prior. Connell Johnson was a gambler who owed money to a group called the Wolf Men. The Wolf Men was a mob-like organization that was spread out amongst several towns and cities in the western states.

Peter immediately found himself hacking into the local police’s database, a skill he had learned from his time in NOTCH. Once inside, he found the information regarding Connell Knight’s murder. Upon reading the information that the police had collected, it was clear that Connell was targeted. The security cameras had captured a man in a black hood walking into a store and demanding that the cashier give him the money, but when Connell Knight emerged out of the bathroom and tried to make a break for the door, the robber turned and wildly fired three shots. Two bullets found their way into Connell’s skull which was a surprising ratio for someone who was firing randomly. In addition, after Connell was killed, the robber forgot about the cash and stumbled out of the store. All evidence pointed to Connell being targeted, and undoubtedly, Connell’s only daughter, Jessica Knight, was about to be targeted for she was the sole inheritance of Connell’s life savings. If Peter did not interfere, Jessica would suffer a similar fate as her father.

The sound of a door slamming drew Peter’s attention, and he meandered over towards the front of the house and found Alison hanging her wool, white coat on a coat rack. Work was hard on her today for her appearance was ragged, and for once, she looked her age. The lack of life in her eyes told Peter that she did not want to cook dinner with him, and after Peter welcomed her home with a hug, he told her to go upstairs and get some sleep before dinner. As Alison wandered upstairs, Peter went to work on dinner. However, his mind was elsewhere as he crafted a delectable pan of Meatloaf. Where his mind had once held Alison, it held a new image; the image of Connell’s lifeless body.

Although it pained Peter to leave Alison in Rodrick’s clutches for even a single night, Peter knew that he had to protect Jessica Knight from the Wolf Men. Once again, the world was throwing another obstacle in the way of Peter, but perhaps, Peter could use it to his advantage. If he told Rodrick and Alison about his heroic venture, they would see him in his true form, a hero. By stopping the Wolf Men, Peter would make the world a better place for he would be avenging Connell, protecting Jessica, proving himself to Alison, and stopping the Wolf Men from hurting any other people. All Peter had to do was attack one hideout, and the message would be sent. The Wolf Men might try to fight him, but Peter was not afraid. In fact, he welcomed it.

Quick thoughts on Thor Ragnarok

Now, this is going to be longer than any other reviews I’ve posted, and I was going to make this a much shorter post until I saw that a lot of reviewers disagree with my verdict. Thus, I felt that I should elaborate on each of my points to help explain my thoughts. As always, if you disagree with me, that is totally fine. I am probably in the minority, and the thing that’s great about humans is that we all have different opinions, and no opinion is right or wrong. Of course, there are going to be spoilers, and I am talking big spoilers because a lot of important events happen in this story. Additionally, this is going to be a mostly negative review even though I did enjoy it, but I feel like everything positive I could say has already been said.

The main things I’m going to focus on is the story and the characters, and to do this, I’m going to do a quick summery to get everyone caught up. So, it starts off with Thor chained up in a fiery dimension by some fire demon that wants to bring Ragnarok down on Asgard. To do this, he needs to get to Asgard and do something with his crown. Thor defeats him and takes his crown to Asgard where he meets Scourge, a human who is kind of supposed to play the coward but more on him later. Thor heads up to the center of Asgard and uncovers Loki disguised as Odin. Loki takes Thor to find Odin on Earth, and while there, Thor has a fun but somewhat pointless encounter with Dr. Strange (yes I loved the scene but if Loki had just taken Thor to the island, nothing would’ve changed.) When they find Odin, he tells them that he is ready to die and that when he dies, their sister the goddess of death who did a lot of bad things with him will be released, and then, he dies peacefully. Right then, the sister appears, and Thor tries to attack her with his hammer. She catches it in her hand and destroys it. Loki tries to get the portal to open up, but the sister knocks them out and goes to Asgard herself. At Asgard, she kills Thor’s friends from the first two movies, except the girl who strangely isn’t in this one (like they couldn’t even give her a throwaway line,) and all the guards, and a man named Scourge starts to follow her around.

Loki and Thor are taken to another planet where Loki becomes friends with Jeff Goldbloom’s villain character who runs a gladiator ring. Thor gets captured by Valkyrie and has to fight the Hulk. Thor wins, but because of a shock collar, Hulk is able to beat him. After this, Hulk and Thor stay in a champion suit of some sort and befriend each other. Thor also befriends Valkyrie who is apparently already best friends with the Hulk. After a lot of talking, Thor breaks out, and Hulk follows him. They reach the ship that brought Hulk to this planet and seeing Black Widow’s video message turns Hulk into Bruce Banner. Bruce and Thor sneak around for a while and then run into Valkyrie and Loki who decide to help them. They escape by taking one of Jeff Goldbloom’s ships, but Loki tries to betray them so Thor leaves him behind. They escape through a forced butt joke and get back to Asgard.

Meanwhile, the sister, Hela, revives her skeleton army and wants to use the portal machine to spread her influence. However, Heimdall steals the sword and hides all the Asgard civilians that he can. Hela tracks him down and comes close to getting the sword when she is suddenly drawn to Thor. Thor says he’ll fight Hela by himself while his friends evacuate the civilians. He fights Hela and loses an eye. During this fight, Banner transforms into the Hulk off-screen after belly-flopping from a height that should kill him. The Hulk and the Valkyrie fight off the skeleton army, but the civilians are trapped. Loki returns in a large ship with the other gladiators that were fighting for Jeff Goldbloom. They assist in fighting the skeletons, and Scourge switches sides and sacrifices himself by protecting the citizens. During this time, Thor gets the idea that releasing Ragnarok is a good thing since it’ll kill Hela and only Asgard will perish so he gets Loki to revive the fire demon from the begining of the movie. Everyone escapes while the fire demon blows up himself along with Hela and Asgard. At the end, Thor is takes command and says they are heading to Earth to build a new Asgard.

So, what is there to say about the story? Well, it was kind of confused. It didn’t seem to know which of two stories it wanted to tell. The first part of the movie centers around them finding Odin and Hela defeating Asgard. Then, it divulges into another story about Thor and the Hulk becoming friends and Thor becoming friends with the Valkyrie and trying to escape Jeff Goldbloom. At least a third is spent on this section, and aside from adding the Valkyrie and Hulk, nothing really happens. Sure, it explains where Loki got the ship and his men and gave Thor some allies to fight Hela’s army, but considering that Loki could’ve obtained a ship from nearly anywhere and battling the skeleton army could’ve been done by nearly anyone, it felt rather pointless to waste so much time just to add a few extra characters to the roster. In addition, certain plot points never seem go anywhere. One example is the fact that Odin used to be semi-evil and work with Hela. This is brought up by Hela multiple times, but it never changes Thor or impacts him in any meaningful way. During one scene, he sees the painting of Hela and Odin, but it doesn’t have any significant impact on him. Another example is Thor’s friends. During the first two movies, Thor is shown to have a close companionship with them by taking them on adventures and reminiscing with them. Thus, having three out of four of them die should have been traumatic for him, but they are literally never mentioned after they are killed. Granted, he never saw his bodies, but not once does he even ask about them and this makes him seem rather unlikable. Another plot point that I had a problem with was the Ragnarok part. This is not because it was dropped but because so little time was spent on it. It appears in the first scene and then goes away until the climax. Considering that the movie is called Ragnarok and it was so important that Thor was having dreams about it, I personally feel like it should have been mentioned more times, and while I was watching the movie, I kept thinking, “So, where is Ragnarok?”

There were other plot-points that I didn’t like, but I don’t want to ramble too long so I’ll get to the characters starting with Thor. Thor’s journey honestly felt rather static. He starts off rather cheerily defeating the fire demon, and then, he takes Loki to Earth. He meets Odin and is sad when he dies, but then, his hammer is destroyed, and he is sent to Goldbloom’s planet. Once there, he stops being sad and becomes cheery when he sees the Hulk. He spends most of his time on Goldbloom’s planet trying to escape, but it never seemed like a giant urgency to him. He always had time to crack jokes, smile, and befriend people. Hulk brings up that losing the Hammer was a big deal but we’re rarely ever shown that since Thor is as cheery as ever. Honestly, I think a big missed opportunity was to have Thor call his hammer and not have it return since it would’ve reminded him what he’s lost. When he returns to Asgard, he fights Hela and loses an eye and is forced to destroy his home to save his people. Everything considered, he has lost a lot in this movie, but never once does he seem too broken or sad. After destroying Asgard, he has a scene with Loki where he says he’d hug Loki if he was there, but I don’t recall seeing Thor hug Loki after it turns out Loki is there. Thor takes the leadership position and declares Asgard’s new location to be on Earth. He seems rather uncertain and shaky as leader at first, but seems more confident by the end. Overall, Thor was a very happy character who was fun to watch but was impossible to connect with considering his lack of feelings towards his father dying, his friends dying,  his hammer being destroyed, his father turning out to have a dark side, and his home being destroyed. Yes, he does appear sad for a little bit after each one of these events, but five minute later, he returns to his usual confident, cheerful self.

Loki’s story started with him badly impersonating Odin which made everybody in Asgard seem like idiots. Keep in mind, magic is not uncommon in Asgard so it made me wonder why only Thor was intelligent enough to see through him. Continuing, Loki watches his father die and reacts how I assume his character would react. He befriends Goldbloom and acts how I assume he would act. He helps Thor escape only to turn around and try to capture him which is expected, and Thor talks to him about how he never changes. Loki decides to help Thor and evacuates the citizens. He follows his brother’s plan to destroy their home and decides to stick by his brother’s side in the end. Overall, his story was probably one of the bests of any character’s. It started with him being his usual self, and it ends with him changing his ways. The end scene with him and Thor cleverly contradicts an earlier scene with him, and I’d say the weakest part was that we didn’t get to see more of it. We got a lot of Loki acting like himself, but we didn’t get very many scenes of him acting like the newly reformed him.

The Valkyrie’s story started with her being a person who hunted new combatants for Jeff Goldbloom, but she is also the person who attends to his favorite combatant which should be a roundabout job. I know it’s a nitpick, but it’s still nonsensical. So, she doesn’t want to return to Asgard because she lost her comrades fighting Hela in the past and knows she’ll die if she fights Hela. After being shown her comrades’ deaths by Loki, she decides to help Thor. She fights with Thor to escape and then fights against the skeleton army. After that, she fights against Hela with Thor but doesn’t succeed in much. Finally, she flees with the others and becomes a part of Asgard. Overall, he story is about a woman overcoming her fears and fighting back and this part is executed fairly well, but the problem lies more in her contribution to the story. Looking back on this character, I think they just wanted a female protagonist because she honestly could have been cut out without much changing. If someone else had captured Thor and if Loki went alone with Thor’s plan without her encouragement, not a lot would have changed. She assisted in the fight against the skeletons and Hela, but the skeletons were rather obsolete and Thor could have bought enough time on his own. Her only other contribution was her connection to Hulk which didn’t impact the story since Hulk turned into Bruce who didn’t remember her for the latter part of the story and her story of how her comrades died which was also unnecessary because we already knew that Hela was really powerful by seeing her destroy Thor’s hammer and soloing Asgard’s army. Overall, I didn’t hate her but a lot of time was wasted on her, and I wish it could’ve been spent on other characters like Hela.

Hulk’s story is probably the second or the best, tied with Loki’s. It starts with Hulk loving Goldbloom’s place because he is loved there and hated on Earth. However when he and Thor spend time together, he realizes that he would rather stick with Thor. He has an emotional breakdown when sees Black Widow, and that’s pretty much it. In summery, Hulk’s story is about Hulk realizing that friends are better than fans and deciding that he’d rather stick by his friend than be loved by Goldbloom’s planet. He also feels guilt for leaving his friends on Earth and that causes him to turn into Banner, but my main problem with his story, besides his butt, is that is that is where his story ends. Overall, he’s pretty good, but he still doesn’t contribute much to the final plot aside from fighting the giant dog which honestly could’ve also been removed since the dog literally did nothing aside from fight Hulk.

From there, lets go onto Banner’s story. So, his story starts with him realizing he was gone for two years which terrifies him, but he goes along with Thor’s plan just so he can escape to Earth. When he gets to Asgard, he very willingly turns back into the Hulk even so far as to try to do a fancy entrance. Honestly, his story is bad. It starts with him fearing turning into the Hulk, but by the end, he is ready to turn into the Hulk. Now, this isn’t a bad story, but the problem is nothing happens that causes him to grow as a character that would lead to him choosing to willingly turn back int the Hulk, and he never seems to lack any doubts about turning back into the Hulk at the end. Overall, he failed as a character, but I don’t think he was really supposed to succeed as a character anyway.

Next up is Scourge who I feel deserves a mention. His character starts with him ignoring his job to impress two girls, and Thor ruining it. He next appears when Hela arrives, and after watching two of Thor’s buddies die, he decides to serve her with doubts. He next appears when he is ordered to execute a woman. He hesitates but eventually decides to do it. However, Hela is called away before he needs to finish so he doesn’t kill her. He later switches sides to Thor when everyone is escaping and hides on the ship while everyone else fights. However, he changes his mind and decides to help the heroes, and thus, he gets killed by Hela. Overall, not a terrible story, but nothing remarkable. His story seems to be about a coward becoming selfless, but a major thing holding his story back is that his actions, aside from right before his sacrifice, never seemed too cowardly. Considering he joined her right after watching several better warriors get killed, he wasn’t left with a lot of options. He also seemed to lack any interactions with any other characters which kind of made his character rather pointless in terms to the overall story which wouldn’t have been a big deal if characters like Hela didn’t have so little screen time.

Also, I feel I should also point out that Odin contributed a lot to Hela’s success due to the fact that he gave everyone almost no warning until the point where he died which gave Hela a giant advantage over an unprepared Asgard. This is mainly a problem because Odin didn’t seem to mind dying all that much despite apparently knowing what would happen if he died. Overall, he came off as insensitive and unlikable.

Finally, lets talk about Hela. Her story starts with her being released after Odin dies.  She breaks Thor’s hammer and jumps into the portal to Asgard. Once there, she kills Asgard’s army and Thor’s friends. She then goes into the treasure vault and makes a big deal about the eternal fire which she uses to revive her skeleton army. She then searches for the sword to open the portal, and threatens to kill until she finds it. This convinces someone to tell her where it is located so she goes to retrieve it. However, she is distracted by Thor tapping Odin’s staff on the ground so she goes to fight him. She cuts his eye while her army gets defeated by the Hulk, the Valkyrie, and some extras. She defeats Thor, but then the fire demon gets released, and she dies while everyone gets away. So, what is there to say about her? Honestly, she suffers a lot from lack of screen time. She accomplishes a lot in the movie, but at the same time, she comes of as a side story villain. This is in large part due to the fact that Thor spends the majority of the middle of the movie focused of Jeff Goldbloom’s villain character. This doesn’t make her worse, but it weakens the connection between Thor and Hela because less time is spent on their conflict. You see, as a story progresses, the tension and conflict between the protagonist and the antagonist should rise until we reach the climax where all the tension that was built up is released. The problem with this in Thor Ragnarok is that, in the middle of the movie, the tension building is instead wasted on Jeff Goldbloom’s character. As a result, we only have half a movie of tension built up for this major villain. In addition, the climax of the Thor vs. Goldbloom’s character happens right before the climax of the whole story. This is bad because it gives the audience even less time to get excited for the Hela vs. Thor battle, and as a result, the battle seems hollow. Overall, she was a decent character but not nearly enough time was dedicated to her. This combined with lack of buildup to her climax made her seem relatively lackluster and forgettable. In addition, her skeleton army was not very intimidating and was defeated fairly easy which made her seem weaker because she seemed to believe that they were powerful based on how she bragged about the eternal flame which revived them.

Now that the characters are out of the way, lets talk about the main theme of the story. So, the theme appears to be that home is determined by people and not by the place. This is stated by Odin multiple times, and at the end, Thor sacrifices Asgard to save his people and says Asgard is wherever they live. Now, this isn’t a bad moral, but if the thing that matters is the people, then it is rather peculiar that Thor never asked about his friends, the people that should mean the most to him. This is also weakened by the fact that Thor doesn’t grieve for his father much despite him also being very important to him. Overall, the theme is passable, but it is greatly muddied by Thor’s lack of concern for his friends and father and the fact that it only comes up during the final battle.

Those are my thoughts on Thor Ragnarok. Overall I would give it a 7.5/10. I would recommend watching it for entertainment, but it is nowhere near a masterpiece or the best Marvel movie that other people claim. If you disagree, that is fine. I must confess I have only watched it once, and I might have missed somethings so you can let me know in the comment section if I missed anything or if you disagree. Thanks a ton and have a great week.

Song/Poem: The Maiden in the Fire

Oh, the Maiden of the fire roams the dark

Against the Father night, the Maiden fights

The men and women rejoice in her sight

The Maiden watches them with ember eyes

She shields them from her Father’s cries

Oh, the Maiden of the fire roams the twilight

She listens to men and women praising her light

She calls to them singing proudly

Her life is nearing its end sadly

Oh, the Maiden of the fire roams the light

Against the blades of the sun, her time has come

Her flames rest and her fight is done

Goodbye, oh, fair Maiden of the fire