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This article, Walls Coming Down: Fall of the Guardians, is property of Cold hard steel.

There are many things left untold about the fate of the organization the Guardians.

Who exactly are they? Why are they hunting demons? Why does it seem that their work never shows up in a prominent manner?

These questions have yet to be answered, and may be handled so by telling this story. This shall illustrate the time from the end of a warrior's plan for peace and the surfacing of a great empire that shall be diminished. It starts on a day that was restless, and it felt that battle was being planned...

Chapter One: Results of "Peace"

It was cloudy.

The sky was smeared in a whitish gray, covering the world in sadness. The sky was grieving, possibly foreshadowing an event that would be the downfall of something. Or somebody.

These clouds were hanging over a city, one that had been created in less than a week, and one that had the strongest force of fighters assembled in a long, long time. The main streets were still busy, even though it looked to rain within minutes. Vendors selling goods, from fruit to clothing to weapons, yelling at the top of their lungs. He didn't really like it.

Ean Eromalc, Second Captain of the Guardians, flipped up the collar of his jacket. It was cold. Somehow, even his personality shivered.

Which was a foreboding thing, as he was the ice master.

He walked towards the large, blackish sky scraper in the back of the city, slowly moving towards it as he looked around to see if the others had already gotten there or if he was the last one to arrive. He hoped not. James would kick his ass later if he was late.

As he reached halfway, it began to rain, very lightly, a mist falling from the sky. He ignored it and the coldness it brough until he got to the building. It was pouring when he walked under the canopy of the entrance.

God, he hated rain.

He immediately walked past the security guards and the secretaries, as they all knew his face, and the expression it held right now said "Talk to me and I will fucking rip off your head and-"...well, you get the idea.

He stepped into the lift, which smoothly went up to the thirtieth floor, the conference room. He stepped up to the door, which had a blue tinge to it, almost glowing. This barrier annoyed him, he had no idea why James put it in place, and he didn't know why he had to protect the fifteen most powerful fighters on the continent. Gah, he was ticked so badly.

Since the barrier only dissipated in the presence of a Guardians' symbol, Ean pulled off his jacket, and lifted up his shirt, revealing the tattoo the size of a softball on his left pectoral. The symbol glowed a slight orange, and the barrier disappeared. Suddenly shouting could be heard through the door. Oh. That's why it's there.

He stepped in, and the yelling was even louder. Gaston and Emmz were arguing again. What now?

James looked up from observing th two fight, and said "Oh, Ean, so happy to see you could come! Now, would you kindly separate these two for me?"

Evil bastard. He knew that when Gaston and Emmz got in a fight, property damage was to ensue. And many men had once tried to break up these fights. They failed. Ean assumed this was James' punishment, but he remained apathetic towards his superior. He stepped between Emmz and Gaston, both holding fists up, and stopped them both. Cold.

Which could be taken in a literal sense, as he froze their hands to his own.

He spoke lowly and in a serious tone, "Sit. Down. Both of you."

These words, despite often not changing anything, gave off an aura that made Emmz cringe and Gaston break his hand out of the ice and huff over to his seat, Emmz following suit. Ean soon sat down next to Gaston, and he listened to James, who, after waiting for the three to sit down, stood up to address the fifteen present. "Ladies and Gentlemen, I have called you here to this conference today for a fairly important reason. As you all know, recently a plan was executed by a man named Seireitou Hyuuga, who at one time had complete control over the world. We escaped this, and returned when it died down. In our absence, demons have popped up in numerous areas far more quickly, and we're really behind. But, this is not the only reason you are sitting here," he said, sitting down and pressing a button on the large table the fifteen were sitting around. The table began to glow itself, a dim light that shaped and foremd until it was a map of the world. It zoomed in on the land of the Sun, and dots showed up in various places.

A voice spoke up, "Why are there seven dots?" said Scarr, almost innocently asking an obvious question.

When James looked at Scarr, he was grinning, but when he noticed James' eyes on him he sobered up quickly enough.

"These dots represent seven distinct energy signatures, as tracked and labeled by the R 'n D department. I would assume someone here knows what these dots are?" said the leader.

The thirteenth captain, Hollis, spoke up. "They represent the energy signatures of...reincarnations..." he said.

"Yes, Mister Stenart. These are the seven reincarnations of seven star demons that have been defeated in the past. These only occur very rarely, and the fact that all seven are out at once means something strange is going on. I would assume that the one Scarr has told us about is behind this, So I think that setting up a team for tracking this man is in order. Now, What say you, my captains?"

Jenifer Follman, the fourth captain, spoke first, "I think that a search team is not necessary. We should stay here, defend our respective bases, and take care of the reincarnates one by one," she said, calmly why looking at the map on the table.

"But that would mean they could gang up on us," said Ean. "Assuming they're more powerful than regular seven stars, we'd be screwed if we were caught in a corner, split up," he said while messing around with the numerous controls on his mask.

"I say we go get 'em," chimed in Lydean, the twelfth. "We could take them down if we go by at least groups of two. We have more than enough for that," she said, counting the number of dots.

"Eh, I don't think that's a good idea either, Lydean. We should rather keep together, with a single base as an operation center, and attack from there. Take out those who're the closest to the bases, and eventually we're done," said Wasa, the fourteenth. "We could take them out as effectively as your plan, and still keep them from getting anywhere."

James held up his hand, signaling to everybody present that the debate was over. He sat back down, and continued to speak: "My decision is that we send fairly small groups of captains, about five or six, to posts around where there are more than two within a certain area. Take them down one by one, but do whatever it takes to keep the bases from receiving any damage or casualties. Now, go and extreminate some zombies..." he said, sitting back down as the other fifteen walked out.

Hmm...This situation is very dangerous...Seven reincarnations at once, and only fifteen captains to fight them...great...

James got up and walked out of the room, pondering the situation. He saw an end to it. He didn't like it.

Fate, As it Holds

Ean walked out of the administrative building, heading for his quarters on the west side of town.

It was still raining, but everything was closed now, oonly business inside was still running.

Oh, how he fucking hated the rain.

He stalked off towards the west quarter, occasionally seeing people he knew, but ignored their greetings.

Three months, six days, thirteen hours.

That's how long it had been since he had seen Nami. That was probably the cause of his bad mood. Originally, he was cold, unreachable on the emotional level. He built up a wall, and was afraid to take it down, as it was what made up most of him, or he just feared what would happen if he let it down once.

It was fear.

But, as fate often held it, she had to come along.

Her with her silken hair, and bubbly laugh, and her spite.

The first time she ever talked to him, he could barely speak. She was that much influential to him, so enticing, so happy.

He hated it, yet loved it.

They began to become friends, slowly getting to know eachother. Every single time he hadn't seen her in a long period of time, he reverted back to his old self, cold and walled in. Almost angry.

They started dating, for years and years, until he asked her to marry him.

She said yes.

They were truly happy, the following months. Now, they were still engaged, but they were so busy that a wedding date had yet to be issued. He hadn't seen her for that long, and he was pissed. He tromped through the lobby of the dorms, up the stairs, and up to his door. He opened it tightly, and slammed it closed. The light was off, and as he turned it on, there was a woman in front of him.

Dang her and her ninja heritage.

He immediately hugged her, holding her closer than physically possible, and his mood melted away again.

She pushed away from his body, trying to speak to him trough the daze he was in, "Geez, kill me, why don't you? It's only been three months, give me some time to catch my breath," she said, breathing in deeply.

He was excited, now they were together. He spoke after her words reached him, "Three months was too damn long," he said, smothering her in his arms again, this time the embrace mutual.

That night was...special... in more ways than one.

The morning was bright, and the window curtains were still Nami's favorite part of her fiance's appartment, as they let in sunlight without giving a view of what might be going on inside. He was a;ready ready to go, and she was working on her clothes. Finally, they stepped out into the brisk morning air of the mountain, and walked towards the entrance.

Ean was now revving to go to work, along with his team (and a last minute addition), to go hunt some demons.

They were at the gate, himself, Gaston, Jenifer, Nami, Emmz, and the fifteenth captain, Megan Catzern.

After checking their inventory, Megan announced to the group, "Okay, we're gonna be heading to my base from here, and set up that perimeter James told us about. We have four demons in our midst, so we need to be extra careful, understood?"

"Yes ma'am!" said the other five.

Ean and Nami got on his megabike, and revved the engine, zooming off in the direction of the fifteenth base. Jenifer and Gaston were together on his not-often used Bike, and followed suit, with Megan flying above them on a cloud she often conjured up.

And so they left.

Long Way Up

They arrived at the base of a mountain, which climbed higher into the fog that characterized the area. Ean and Nami looked up from the megabike, following a set of stairs that snaked up the side of the mountain, disappearing into the clouds.

Great, they had to walk up, didn't they?

Megan, Gaston, and Jenifer arrived shortly after them, with Megan falling from an unknowable distance, as she went through the clouds.

Ean looked to them, then to the stairs, "I would assume the only way to get to the base is to walk there?" he asked.

Megan stepped up to the base of the staircase, saying "Yes, it's the only way. The fog placed around the mountain is like the barrier James places on the HQ, it hides the base from prying eyes. Also, the only way to get there is to take every single step. Otherwise, you'll end up at the bottom of the mountain when you reach the top," as she made her trek up the stairs.

Gaston looked at her incredulously, "What?! How stairs are there?!"

Megan turned from her walking, a look of indifference on her face, "About ten thousand. Why?"

Ean and Gaston looked at eachother, almost telepathically saying She's f---ing insane!!

Jenifer an Nami got up to the stairs and had already made their way up, catching up with Megan, waiting for the two emn to start climbing.

Ean looked at the stairs. God, he was gonna be tired after this crap.

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