Enter The Shadow
The night of Noctys’ departure.
Thrice opens his door and steps in while waving to Galena. As he closes the door Thrice holds his arm, the one she touched, breathes deep, and smiles.
Thrice walks over to his closest, searches in it for a moment, and then pulls out his pull-up bar. He opens the door to his Master’s Retreat, attaches the pull-up bar, and changes into some shorts and a sleeveless shirt. “So,” Wrath’s voice creeps into existence, “he is finally gone.” Thrice looks over to Wrath, nods to him, and proceeds to work-out. Thrice’s back is to Wrath as he looks into the Retreat. “Yes, he is gone,” Thrice thinks, “but that does not mean it is all happy-go-lucky from here.”
“Of course,” Wrath states, Thrice could hear him pacing behind him, “there is still some challenge left.”
Thrice does his best to ignore him, trying to focus on the empty Retreat, on the pulse from his soul-stone, on Galena’s touch.
“Ah yes,” Wrath says as he stops pacing, “I forgot you are miles away with thoughts of her.”
Thrice could hear the smile in Wrath’s voice but continued to do his pull-ups. “Twenty-three….twenty-four.”
As Thrice goes down he sees Innocence and Temperance are standing in the Retreat. Innocence tilts his head at Thrice, “Why are you doing that Kirk? You are already fit enough.”
“I wasn’t…Twenty-five…fast enough today. Twenty-six…I need to get back into…twenty-seven…shape. If someone like Noctys…twenty-eight…can outrun me then I need to…twenty-nine…improve.”
“You caught him in the end, isn’t that what matters,” Innocence asks.
“I did catch him…thirty…after he was knocked unconscious,” Thrice attempted to smirk while working out.
“Oh,” Innocence said while looking down.
Temperance put his hand on Innocence’s shoulder, “It’s okay child do not feel bad, Kirk is doing this because he feels…wronged? He just doesn’t feel right being almost bested by Noctys.”
Innocence scratches his head, “I guess I just don’t understand, grown-up thoughts are confusing.”
Thrice chuckles, “I understand that one-hundred percent little guy.”
Wrath pushes past Thrice and stands in front of Innocence and Temperance, “So what are we gonna do now Kirk?”
Thrice looks at Wrath, “Now? Fourty…now we just see where this whole D.C. thing takes us.”
Innocence smiles, “Hooray! Another trip, at least this one will be closer than the Amazon.”
Temperance looks up to Thrice, “So, what do you think will happen up there?”
Thrice looks at his hands, “Honestly…Fourty-five…I have no idea what to expect…fourty-six…but I will do my best to prepare for anything.”
Thrice continues on his exercises for a while into the night until he is nice and worn out.
The next night, after Thrice had already moved in the filing cabinet and bookshelf along with becoming the new Shadow.
Thrice staggers in, last nights exercises did a number on him. “Next time,” Thrice thought as he did his best to stretch, “I’ll stop at two-hundred.” As he stretches, Thrice goes into the Retreat and examines the filing cabinet and bookshelf. He opens the bottom most drawer of the filing cabinet marked NO. Inside the drawer are most of his past items: License, photos, and pretty much anything attached to his past. “Now stay buried,” Thrice thought as he closed and locked the drawer. “So,” Wrath said, “seems you are taking a liking to your new job.” Thrice turns around to see Wrath leaning on the door frame, “Yes, figured it’s something to do than get pissed…granted I did not care much for the old job anyway,” Thrice chuckles, “all I did was get told I was not doing my job right.”
Wrath stepped into the room, examining the new additions quickly, “Still, you aren’t the least bit upset that Ramses has your job?”
Thrice shakes his head as he adjust a screw in the bookshelf, “Not really, he may have my job but at least Overman has the job of Heart now, that puts me at ease.”
Wrath sighs, “So I suppose Galena was right, Noctys was the root of most of the tension.”
Thrice looks to Wrath, “You know she is right, he was out of control man. If he continued to be with us Atlantis only knows what would’ve happened.”
Wrath chuckles, “Most likely him in a ditch with his guts spilling out asking us for sweet release.”
Thrice smiles, “I guess I can’t argue with you on that.”
Temperance spoke up as he entered the room along with Innocence, “Glad you are taking this all so well Kirk.”
Thrice looked to the two of them, “Suppose I have no choice but to accept it, at least it will get me out of the Sanctum for some time here and there.”
Innocence ran up to Thrice and looked Thrice in the eyes with excitement in his, “So are you like a detective now?”
Thrice chuckled, “I suppose I am.”
“Coooooool,” Innocence said as he looked up at Thrice, “oh,oh,oh. Can I be your side-kick?”
Thrice smirked, “Well little guy, I’m not gonna be like Batman. I’m gonna be looking into some pretty bad people and I don’t want you to…see that.” Thrice realized that didn’t really mean much since Innocence was him but still he meant what he ‘said’.
Innocence looked to his feet, “Okay, I understand.” He sniffles.
Thrice bent down to look Innocence in the eyes, “But if I have a not so bad guy I’m looking into I’ll make sure to bring you along.”
Innocence’s eyes looked they were about to pop out, “YA MEAN IT?”
Thrice nods, “Detective’s honor.”
As Innocence ran around the room in excitement, Temperance and Wrath stepped up next to Thrice.
“So Kirk,” Temperance said, “who is your first…case?”
Thrice looked to the two of them and breathed deeply, “Abel.”
Temperance shuddered while Wrath just smiled, “Great, ’bout time that bastard gets what is coming to him.”
Thrice held up his hand, “I am not going after him, I will just be investigating him. I believe Silverwing has a score to settle with him anyway.”
Wrath just smiled, “But still, some action….finally.”
Thrice just sighed even though he agreed with Wrath somewhat.
“So when will your investigation start,” Temperance asked.
Thrice looked to him, “Most likely once we all get back from D.C.”
“Excellent,” Wrath proclaimed as he slammed his fists together, the metal gloves clanging off each other, “the sooner we solve this whole shit with Dio and her ‘mom’ the sooner we can kick in Abel’s door and kick him straight into the a bullet with his name on it.”
Thrice wasn’t sure whether to be happy for Wrath or be scared for himself at this point.
“Well for now,” Thrice ‘said’ as he walked out of the room, closed the door, and sat on his bed, “I need to get some sleep, I am beat.”
Temperance and Innocence disappeared. Wrath smiled at Thrice, “Understood Kirk,” and disappeared shortly after.
Thrice didn’t really have time to question Wrath as his body decided to pass out, “Oh sleep, how I’ve missed you.” Thrice’s mind twisted and turned as he thought of what was to come after D.C. “Abel,” he formed his image in his mind, “your days are numbered now.”