Chapter Fifty-Five: Rise of the Crusaders
It was time. A time for long-held rivalries to be renewed. A time for long-forgotten battles to be re-fought. A time for old wounds to be re-opened.
"THAT WAS SO NOT OUT YOU CHEATERS!"
It was time for a game of cricket.
"Earth to morons, if you don't want to be run out, stay in your crease!" Sunny snapped at an irate Daniel.
"I WAS in my crease thank you, I was MILES inside my crease!" Daniel yelled back.
"Not from where I'm standing." Petunia piped up. "You were no where near it!"
"It was a run out fair and square!" Belle agreed.
"Of course YOU'D say that!" TJ glowered.
"What are you accusing us of?" Belle fumed.
"You're cheaters, plain and square!" Charlie stalked over from his wicket, throwing down his bat.
"Them's fighting words!" Sunny prepared for an altercation.
"Are you guys seriously going to get into fisticuffs over a stupid game of cricket?" Webster looked amused at his younger friends.
"YES." Was the resounding reply.
"It's great to see that maturity is a pre-requisite for joining the Last Order." Webster rolled his eyes.
"Well go home then if you're too good for us!" Sam folded his arms. "Maddy says you haven't been around much anyway."
"And what would you know?" Webster frowned at the younger man.
"I might be going through a teaching degree and trying to save the city, but I can still make time for my friends and family." Sam replied snarkily.
"Sam has a point." Sunny agreed. "Patrick and I have a great relationship, we're even getting properly married in autumn."
"And we're going to be the bridesmaids!" Belle, Petunia and Tammy started dancing happily.
"So this is what this is about. You think I should give in and marry Maddy." Webster scowled.
"Mate, we just want you to start being a family with her again!" Charlie groaned. "It's been nearly five years since Tate was born-,"
"Don't." Webster snapped. Belle rolled her eyes.
"You are NOT still wrapped up over that petty criminal you used to call a best friend, are you?" She asked.
"Tate wasn't a petty criminal!" Webster was now fired up. He narrowed his eyes at Belle.
"Easy mate, Belle has a point!" TJ pointed out. "Sure she might have done a few good things, but that doesn't make up for the fact that she went completely psycho and tried to kill a University worth of people."
"She had a few issues but there was nothing that couldn't be fixed!" Webster protested.
"Why are you still protecting her? It's not like you loved her." Tammy said.
Webster grimmaced, before turning on his heel and storming off.
"I really don't know why he decided to join the Last Order, he really doesn't get along with us at all." Daniel frowned.
"He probably thought we were all scholars like Belle." Charlie rolled his eyes.
"It wouldn't hurt you guys to follow my example every once in a while." Belle narrowed her eyes at him.
"He'll figure it out." Sunny shrugged. "I know Patrick and I had a lot of issues when we first had Melody. Trying to balance being a Knight and a parent is hard work, and it took us the best part of a year to sort it out."
"Yeah, we remember." TJ smirked.
"Anyway, let's just ease off him for a while." Sunny continued. "He's only been a Knight for what, six months? Give it some time."
"I agree. Webster gets in moods sometimes." Belle added. "I lived with him and Maddy for four years, trust me, I know."
"If you say so." Petunia shrugged. "Now are you boys going to bowl or what?"
"THAT WAS NOT OUT!"
"WHY HASN'T HE ASKED ME TO MARRY HIM YET?!" Mobster Marion wailed.
"Will you stop it already?!" Daryl Jones groaned, sitting at his fathers desk, feet resting next to the monitor. "I don't know why your stupid boyfriend won't propose."
Mobster Marion pouted and flopped onto the sofa. "Where's your father anyway? My best henchmen are in prison and I want them out."
"He's busy at the moment with a few of his other projects." Daryl checked his phone.
"You're an absolute brat, you know that don't you?" Mobster Marion scowled at the younger Jones. "Tell Arnold when he gets in that I want to see him."
"Toodles." Daryl waved half-heartedly as Mobster Marion stormed out in a huff. He continued playing with his phone, not paying attention to anything that went on around him.
Suddenly, he felt a knife at his throat.
"Hello Daryl. You're giving the Ruby Suit to us." Said a voice behind him.
"Oh am I just?" Daryl grinned lazily. "You really think I'm scared of a little knife at my throat when I've been on the wrong end of the Lions Claw Blade?"
"Given the Lions Claw is currently wielded by a simpering idiot, I think you should be paying the knife at your throat a bit more respect." The voice said, a note of anger coming through.
"I recognise you from somewhere…ah yes. When Marion tried to blow up the theatre, you declared her a psycho and left the Death Valley Mob." Daryl spun around in the chair, his foot narrowly missing his assailant.
"My name is Mark if you must know. Crusader Mark, to be more precise." The man stood up at full height, knife still pointed in Daryls direction.
"Crusader?" Daryl looked confused.
"You would be too young to know of the March Hill Crusaders, they've been underground since before your father was born." Crusader Mark told him. "We used to rule Pleasantville until the Mobsters of Misneach got too strong."
"And now you want your throne back?" Daryl smirked.
"If you don't mind." Crusader Mark smirked back.
"And you thought my father would give a damn if I was killed?" Daryl rolled his eyes.
"We just want the Ruby Suit. It's a powerful weapon, and too potent to be left in the hands of a moron like you." Crusader Mark told the young man in front of him.
"If you think insulting me is going to get me to hand it over, then you're wrong." Daryl put his feet back up on the desk. "Besides, I don't have it here."
"Liar." Crusader Mark pulled out a large revolver. Daryls eyes widened.
"Is that the Lucky Seven Gun?!" He asked warily. "How'd you get it off Giggles?"
"It is NOT the Lucky Seven Gun, as nice as it would be to have it. No, this is the cousin of the Lucky Seven, the Mystic Eight Gun. There are seven guns in total, each with a weapon of some sort as a brother." Crusader Mark rolled his eyes. "For example, the Lucky Seven and the Lions Claw are brothers. The Trinity Three and the Tigers Tooth Scimitar are another set, as are the Palatable Six and the Stingrays Tail Whip."
"So what's the brother of that one?" Daryl couldn't help but ask.
"Never you mind. The Ruby Suit please?" Crusader Mark cocked the gun. "I won't ask again."
"Nope." Daryl replied.
"Fine. You die then." Crusader Mark prepared to fire the Mystic Eight Gun.
"I wouldn't do that if I were you Mark."
Crusader Mark groaned. Standing at the door was Demon Jones with a small posse of Emerald Mobsters.
"Who are you with?" Demon Jones glared at Crusader Mark.
"I've gone through enough exposition with your son, I'm sure he can fill you in later during a timeskip." Crusader Mark replied.
"Lazy." Demon Jones scowled. "Get out of my office."
"Hmmm…I think not." Crusader Mark smiled. "I quite like it in here."
"You're completely outnumbered and outmatched; what makes you so certain you're going to get out of here alive?" Daryl glared at his attacker.
"You REALLY think I came in here alone?" Crusader Mark began to laugh. "I have Crusaders throughout the building, there's no way I'm leaving without the Ruby Suit."
"And I told you, I don't have it here. Even if I did, you'd never be able to get it off me." Daryl replied coldly.
"So be it." Crusader Mark pointed the Mystic Eight Gun at Daryls head. "Good-bye Daryl."
Daryl flinched as a gunshot rang throughout the room. Crusader Mark screamed.
"It's YOU!" He pointed at the now broken window, his other arm now dripping with blood.
"Yeah, it's me. You're lucky I know people who work here Demon, otherwise Daryl was a goner." Standing in the broken window frame stood Giggles. "It seems the March Hill Crusaders have taken over the building."
"Well, I never. Giggles coming to save little old me." Daryl sneered at Giggles, who replied by flipping him the bird.
"I'm here to make sure no one gets killed." She aimed the Lucky Seven Gun at Crusader Mark.
"Oh really?" Crusader Mark aimed the Mystic Eight Gun back.
Downstairs, Peter Masters was hiding under his desk as Crusader Roger stood with the Dragons Scale Scythe against Chuckles and the Lions Claw Blade.
"So you're the ones who murdered all those people over 90 years ago." Chuckles glared at Crusader Roger.
"That was my great-grandfather." Crusader Roger said proudly. "It wasn't like YOUR little 'protest' last year where you all escaped. WE made sure that Damon and Pythias didn't live to continue to cause trouble."
Chuckles growled angrily. His hands gripped the Lions Claw Blade tightly.
"You're out of your league Chuckles. Why don't you just drop your weapon and scurry off home where you belong?" Crusader Roger continued. "I might even be inclined to let you live if you do."
Chuckles ran at the Crusader and swung at him with the Lions Claw Blade, but it was blocked by the blade of the Dragons Scale Scythe. "I'll never surrender, I'll fight until the end."
"How cute." With the slightest of movements, Crusader Roger blocked another blow from the Lions Claw Blade. "I'm sure your bravery will be remembered…for a little while."
Chuckles continued to try and get a blow in, but Crusader Roger was far too smart and strong. Upstairs, Giggles was having the same problems with Crusader Mark.
"If you could actually HELP that'd be great!" She snapped at Demon Jones, who shrugged and continued to polish his boomerang.
"I'm too busy enjoying the show." Was the reply.
Giggles cartwheeled out of the way of another bullet. The Mystic Eight Gun seemed so much more potent than its smaller cousin, it might have been completely psychological but Giggles was hopelessly outclassed.
"And THIS is why you don't take on those who are better than you!" Said a voice that Giggles could scarcely believe was coming to her rescue.
"Master Revolver?!" She yelped.
"Marion!" Chuckles cried as Mobster Marion blocked a deadly blow from the Dragons Scale Scythe with her sword downstairs.
"You're out of your league kiddo, get your little buddy upstairs and get out." Mobster Marion warned, an iciness to her voice that Chuckles had never heard before. "My forefathers wiped these punks off the map and I intend to do the same."
Chuckles stepped back. He didn't want to hand this fight over to his sworn enemies but it didn't seem like he had a choice.
"You've done what you've needed, you've saved the innocents, now GET OUT." Master Revolver growled at Giggles. "This isn't your fight."
Giggles groaned, but she knew he was right. She quickly flew out of the building and tapped on one of the downstairs windows. Chuckles motioned to Peter and the other Council Workers.
"Come on, let's get out of here." He said. They all rushed out of the doors, where Giggles grabbed Chuckles and they flew off to the tip.