Chapter Forty-Five: The Masters Code
“GET OUT OF MY WAY!” Lady Sunlight roared in fury, throwing her sun yo-yo and narrowly missing Lady Silent. She reeled in her weapon and prepared to fire again when she was taken out with a solid hip-and-shoulder by Lady Courage.
“We nearly got rid of Marion for good, and you stopped us you FOOL!” Sir Moonlight shot another arrow at Giggles, who cartwheeled out of the way and landed on a nearby balcony.
“Will you give up?! What did we ever do to you?” Sir Dark and Sir Hedgehog fought against Lady Starlight.
“Stop getting in our way!” Lady Starlight threw some more of her throwing stars at them.
Let's rewind a little bit. Mobster Marion had actually been very good the past few weeks, keeping her nose out of crime, but it all came undone when she went to get her hair cut and didn't like what the hairdresser had done. Obviously, this is a valid reason to call in the rest of the Death Valley Mobsters and have the place destroyed.
(Personally I'm with Marion but for the purposes of this story let's just agree it was a massive over-reaction)
The Outer Knights of the Last Order were first on the scene, and had nearly killed Mobster Marion when Giggles stepped in, telling Mobster Marion to get the hell out of there and stop being such a stuck-up bovine. Infuriated, the Outer Knights of the Last Order chased Giggles to the abandoned old school, where they landed in the middle of a Noble Knights of the Last Order ambush.
Another arrow barely grazed Giggles helmet as Sir Hedgehog threw one of his blades at Sir Moonlight. Sir Moonlight dodged easily and fired an arrow at Sir Hedgehog, which was shot out of the air by Giggles and the Lucky Seven Gun.
“You guys have tried to kill both Ruby and Marion, what makes you so different from them?!” Sir Hedgehog asked as Sir Moonlight grabbed another arrow.
“They're criminals! We're trying to save people!” Lady Sunlight threw her yo-yo again, nearly hitting Lady Courage.
“Can't we all just get along!?” Lady Luck pleaded, holding her first-aid kit close.
“If you lot would do your job properly, we wouldn't be here!” Lady Starlight thundered.
“Look at you, you easily outnumber us three to one, yet you still haven't beaten us!” Lady Sunlight laughed.
“We're not trying to BEAT you, we're trying to make you see reason!” Sir Hyper groaned as he dodged another throwing star.
"You're pathetic." Lady Starlight scowled.
Sir Moonlight dodged a punch from Giggles and swerved to avoid Sir Hedgehog. He then shot an arrow directly at Giggles, whose Backpack decided to malfunction again, leaving her a sitting duck.
"No way has your shoulder healed yet!" Sir Moonlight roared in anger. At the last second Chuckles had stepped in with the Lions Claw Blade and cut the arrow in two!
"You're right, it hasn't, but I can wield with one hand unlike some people who can barely lift a sword with two." Chuckles replied, arm still in a sling.
"Nobody likes you." Giggles sulked.
"What are you doing Chuckles, you're going to get yourself killed!" Lady Starlight looked in horror at Chuckles.
"He definitely will if he gets in my way!" Sir Moonlight pulled out another arrow, but was stopped by Lady Sunlight.
"Leave him alone Moonlight." She warned.
Sir Moonlight looked confused, but backed off.
"Stay. Out. Of. Our. Way." He warned threateningly, before the Outer Knights of the Last Order escaped.
"What was THAT all about?" Sir Dark asked.
“You know you look really weird wearing only one Arm Scythe right?” Giggles asked, poking Chuckles un-injured arm.
"So what's for dinner tonight?" Charlie sat in the tree next to Belle later that evening.
"Dad's having some friends over from Awesomica, they're doing a tour of the world and thought they'd stop by." Belle replied, pulling some dead leaves off the tree. "They were going to head to the Great Nations but things there are starting to get dicey."
"I saw on the news." Charlie sighed. "Guess what else I saw on the news."
"Demon resigning as Mayor?" Belle asked hopefully.
"Worse. Pro-Outer Knights crap." Charlie told her. "People are calling in to these news shows and giving the Outer Knights their support."
"This really isn't helping our cause. Don't these people think long-term?" Belle groaned.
“Anyway, I'd better go. The twins are having a friend over and they want us to meet him.” Charlie sighed, stretching out.
“A guy?” Belle looked surprised. “Not guys?”
“I have no idea, apparently he's a bit older than them.” Charlie tried to keep the distaste from his voice.
“And so you're going to play big brother and scare him away, right?” Belle grinned.
“If Dad doesn't get to him first.” Charlie grinned back.
He headed back inside and straightened his hair before heading downstairs to meet his sisters friend. He got to the bottom of the stairs before seeing the dark-haired, handsome young man.
"Good evening. You must be Charlie." Hugo smiled a little too graciously.
Charlie immediately scowled. He didn't like the look of Hugo Graziano one little bit. Thomas didn't look thrilled either.
"That's my name." Charlie reined himself in a little. "And you must be Hugo."
"Indeed. It's nice to finally meet the beloved big brother of my two favourite girls." Hugo smiled politely. Charlie didn't trust that smile.
"That looks like it hurt." Hugo continued, looking at Charlies arm.
"Broke it at work." Charlie replied coolly. Who was this creep?
"You should come into the kitchen and meet Mum." Izzy quickly grabbed Hugos hand. The twins dragged him away as Charlie shared a look with his father.
"Don't like him and don't want him near my sisters." Charlie said bluntly.
"Agreed. I'll be keeping an eye on him." Thomas scowled after the young man.
Hugo, meanwhile, was inspecting an old scroll on the wall near the kitchen. Lizzy smiled.
“That's not the real one, it's a copy. The Masters have the original.” She told him.
“I will never kill another human being again. I will always respect my elders, even if I don't agree with them. I will endeavour to dress nicely and appropriately. I will never hold back, and will fight forever for what is right. Most of all, I will always believe.” Hugo read. “Signed, Maurice Masters.”
“The Masters Code. They live next door, and they've lived by it for over 500 years.” Thomas came in from the lounge room. “Which is about the same amount of time our families have been best friends.”
“A bit archaic needing a code to tell you how to be a decent human being though.” Izzy scowled.
“It's tradition.” Charlie stood behind his father, also scowling. “We honour the past by honouring the Code!”
“You set WAY too much by the code, you even use a capital C when you say it!” Lizzy cried.
“How on earth do you know whether or not someone is using capitals when they speak?” Thomas wondered out aloud.
“You're right, I do. Because that Code has survived 500 years for a reason. Because our friendship with the Masters family has survived FIVE HUNDRED YEARS.” Charlie fought back.
“Can we not do this with guests in the house?!” Betty snapped. She turned apologetically to Hugo. “It's an old family argument, I apologise for their rudeness.”
“No need Mrs. Begly, I understand.” Hugo smiled politely. Thomas didn't like that smile. It was too polite for his liking!
“Oh, Liz, Lara was over earlier, she was wondering if you could take care of Madeliene again next week?” Betty turned to her daughter.
“Of course!” Lizzy squealed, making Izzy chuckle and Charlie smile. No matter how much she wasn't thrilled with the older members of the Masters family, Lizzy Begly was a sucker for the baby Madeliene!
“Lizzy is madly in love with the baby Masters.” Izzy explained to Hugo, who chuckled.
“It's nice to see that one of you likes children.” He commented, earning him veiled glares from the two male Beglys.
Betty sighed. It was going to be a long dinner.