Sentinels #1:

Dawn of Twilight 2 of 3

By Gerund

Master Metal sighed and looked at Sorceress. “Only a few minutes now.’

Sorceress could not answer; the heavy band on her face absorbed all sound, leaving the powerless heroine mute. Her shoulders ached from the bands crushing her arms together at elbows and wrists. It took most of her concentration to maintain balance with glowing, green bands binding her knees and ankles, not helped by the spiked heel boots she wore as part of her costume.

Times like this make me wish I wore more practical shoes, she thought. She tested her bonds for the umpteenth time, and was only reminded of how weak she´d become.

“Stop struggling, you´re caught,’ Master Metal said, shaking his head and becoming impatient with the wait he was enduring. “I wish that witch would just take us back already.’

Master Metal watched Sorceress´s big breasts heave as she struggled to breathe over her gag. So intent was his stare that he did not see the red blur coming through the hole that Sorceress made in her original entry until it was too late. The glowing red object hurtled towards Master Metal, knocking the bound Sorceress on her side and hitting Master Metal in the midsection, driving him through the front of the house.

The whole front of the house collapsed from the force. Neighbors who came out during Sorceress´s fight with the thugs, wondering what was going on, now scurried back into their homes.

Stunned, Master Metal looked up to see what had hit him. He was dismayed to see a slim, red-haired woman floating above him, clad in a red and black costume. A red aura of power surrounded her, making the super-heroine unmistakable. Red Guardian, Master Metal thought. How did she get here?

Earlier that Evening

Misha Sorrel, AKA Red Guardian, was doing her weekly check-in with the Chief Guardians, on the distant planet of Garna. The alien order took her from Earth as an orphan and raised her and many others to protect magic throughout the galaxy. After completing her training, Misha was given a small red orb, derived from the Great Orb that protected Garna. The orb gave her the ability to fly, super strength, enhanced durability, and allowed her to travel in outer space.

The weekly check-up gave the Chief Guardians a chance to document her exploits for teaching purposes, and also to evaluate her performance. On rare occasions, like this one, they also alerted her of events occurring on Earth.

Misha sat at the reading table in her bedroom, hands on the small orb. She projected her consciousness to the Great Orb room. The Great Orb room was structured like an auditorium, with rows and rows of seats. The Great Orb itself was on a wide, raised platform. No lights were needed, as the Great Orb illuminated the entire auditorium.

Misha stood on the platform, directly in front of the Great Orb. Facing her was a hooded, ten foot tall figure that she recognized instantly as the Great Elder. The Great Elder was rarely seen by anyone but the Chief Council, so Misha immediately knew something was wrong.

“Is something amiss, Great Elder?’ Misha asked, instantly thinking there was some threat to Garna.

“A powerful force threatens Earth, Guardian,’ The massive Elder boomed.

“What?!’ she said, caught off guard.

“Our records on the subject are incomplete at best, but apparently in Earth´s past, humans were visited by the Fey and their leader, the King of Twilight. Details are few after that, save that powerful human mages expelled the Fey and set up a barrier to keep the Fey from Earth.’

Confused, Misha asked; “Then the barrier is weakening?’

“No, the barrier itself remains strong, but the Fey feed on magic, and there exists one on Earth that can provide the King of Twilight with the energy he needs to break through to Earth.’

Misha was silent for a moment, and then an idea came to her. “Me?’ she asked the Great Elder.

“No Guardian, while your skills are accomplished, the heroine Sorceress is the target of the Fey.’

“Oh, that does make sense,’ Misha said, thinking about her meetings with Sorceress and the amount of power she displayed.

“You must find Sorceress and lend her your help, because if the Fey capture her, then humanity will be faced with a threat that they are ill-equipped to deal with.’

“I will track her down immediately, Great Elder,’ Misha said, bowing and then beginning to return to her body at the Great Elder´s nod of dismissal.

Once back in her body she began suiting up. Her costume was a black body stocking with red on the shoulders and neck, and a small red orb was symbolized on her chest, as if to distract the eye from the reddish freckles that lightly dotted her pale face. Once suited, she ignited her powers, causing her whole body to glow red, and shooting deep red highlights through her long auburn hair. She shot out of her bedroom window into the air.

Sorceress´s energy pulse was not hard to track for the highly trained Red Guardian. She sped south towards Miami as fast as she could. By the time she reached the house that Sorceress raided, she noticed that Sorceress´s energy was subdued. She felt a strange alien presence in the house and knew Sorceress was in danger. Not wanting to waste any time, she flew through the hole in the roof and hit the villain she recognized to be Master Metal, driving him out of the house with one powerful blow. Her attack accidentally knocked over the bound Sorceress, but Red Guardian had to make sure that Master Metal was out of the fight.


Master Metal´s massive frame had destroyed the front of the house as he went crashing through it to land in the front yard. The blow had also knocked him into his human form; that of a stocky man in his late twenties with thinning brown hair and weak blue eyes. He struggled to set up and change form as the glowing Red Guardian floated over him, but could do neither. Finally he slumped to the ground, unconscious. Red Guardian waited a few moments, then satisfied that he was out, headed back into the remains of the house to free Sorceress.

She glanced at the thugs strewn about the living room, but all were motionless, so she focused on the immobile Sorceress. Sorceress squirmed as lay on her right side, straining her powerful muscles in an attempt to free herself.

Red Guardian examined the bonds. She noticed they were glowing green with energy, probably stolen from Sorceress.

“Hold on a second, I´ll get you free and explain what´s going on,’ Red Guardian said, heartened by Sorceress´s eager nod. She would need her ready to fight, as the agent of the Fey would not quit with this failed attempt.

Using her super strength, Red Guardian pulled at the band holding Sorceress´s elbow´s together, but even with Sorceress straining too, they could not loosen the band´s hold. Frustrated, Red Guardian was about to attempt a new tactic when she was swept up in black, metal arms.

The arms crushed the air out of her, and then began jerking her around violently, as if she weighed nothing.

“Bitch, shouldn´t mess with me,’ Master Metal snorted, rage on his face. “Not so much fun being jumped from behind, is it?’

Master Metal´s look of triumph turned to one of shocked surprise.

“No!’ he said, before disappearing, with Red Guardian trapped in his arms, leaving Sorceress defenseless on the floor.

That must have been what he was talking about, Sorceress thought. She was in trouble, her powers gone, trapped in a room full of ruthless criminals. She did not waste any energy straining against the bands, knowing it was useless.

Instead she thought hard about her predicament, trying to ignore the thugs stirring around her. Finally it hit her that the bands were feeding on her energy, and her mothers had taught her how to reclaim stolen energy.

She calmed herself and reached out to the band securing her elbows. She began pulling the energy back into herself, struggling against the band´s pull. She thrilled at the slow return of her strength, and quickly overpowered the band´s pull through sheer willpower. Finally she drained it enough so that it turned brittle and shattered, freeing her elbows.

She quickly attacked the band holding her wrists, then sending an energy blast at one of the men who had gotten to his feet. She drained the bands on her legs at the same time, destroying them easily. She only slightly drained the band gagging her, wanting to present it to her mothers.

Now free, she decided that this current situation was more important that some street gang, so she flew through the destroyed roof and headed home, confident that the police would clean up the mess.

The land blurred below her as she raced to her home in southern Virginia. She was so excited that she almost overshot her house. She stopped abruptly in the air, regained her calm, and cloaked herself as she descended into the backyard of her home; where the glamorous Soceress had descended from the sky, it was the fresh-faced, dark-haired Naomi who landed.

She magically changed into a pair of jeans and a t-shirt before entering. She looked around cautiously, but only saw the setting sun and rolling green hills.

She burst into the kitchen, surprising her mother Johna, who was fixing dinner.

“Where´s Anna-Maria?!’ Naomi exclaimed, wondering where her other mother was.

“She went shopping for a new computer. What happened, Naomi!’ she exclaimed. “Did something go wrong? Are you all right?’

Naomi quickly recounted the events that just recently occurred. Johna listened intently, taking and examining the band Naomi had brought with her. She said nothing until Naomi finished breathlessly.

“We have to find some way to trace Master Metal, before he and this Greta do something to Red Guardian!’

Johna walked up to her daughter, placing her hands gently on her broad, powerful shoulders.

“Take a deep breath and calm down,’ Johna said. “We will help Red Guardian and deal with whoever is responsible for the attack and her kidnapping. But we will do it with clear heads and a sound plan, understood?’

Naomi nodded reluctantly, earning a reassuring smile from Johna.

Naomi smiled at Johna´s calm reassurance. She and Anna-Maria were the only mothers she had ever known. Like Naomi, both women belonged to the Crescent Order, an ancient mystical order in Russia, created during the Mongol conquest.

The order had gone into hiding during the chaos surrounding the end of World War I and the rise of Soviet Russia. They still sent out their most talented members to recruit people that possessed an affinity towards magic even in the face of torture and death if captured by Soviet forces.

It was on one of these missions that childhood friends Johna and Anna-Maria found Naomi´s mother, pregnant and near death. The two were drawn to her by her immense magical potential and her horrible plight. They took her back to the secret base of the Crescent Order, but only the baby could be saved.

As Naomi grew, she far surpassed even the most skilled members of the order in raw power and ability. She also grew closer with Johna and Anna-Maria, her only real connection with her nameless mother.

When Soviet Russia finally dissolved, the Crescent Order decided that Naomi would be better suited to grow up in America. With help from contacts in the west, Johna, Anna-Maria, and Naomi quickly moved to America, settling in Southern Virginia.

“Now let´s go into the pantry and get some answers, shall we?’

Both women walked across the kitchen and opened the large, closet sized pantry. Inside looked like a normal, everyday pantry, stocked with food. But Johna closed the doors, sealing her and Naomi in darkness.

Johna raised her hand, the action barely visible to Naomi. “Spirit Watchers, I summon you!’ Johna exclaimed, her hand glowing blue with power.

Reality slowly fell away, leaving both women in a place made of nothing but shadow and writhing smoke. Naomi looked down, but could not see what she was standing on. Snake-like smoke whirred past her, hissing. Finally a group of voices spoke to the pair.

“What service can we provide to the Crescent Order,’ the bodiless voices said. Naomi shivered, noting that not all of the voices sounded like they wanted to help.

“We would like information on a magic user named Greta, with a presumably green energy pulse,’ Johna said, standing, tall, regal, and fearless in face of the supernatural voices. “My daughter managed to recover an item that bears her touch.’

Johna held out the band, and then a snake of smoke flew into it and carried away into the impenetrable darkness. The voices then began to converse among themselves, an incoherent babble that annoyed Naomi. When some of the voices seemed to engage in an argument, Naomi prepared herself to transform and defend Johna. Johna, sensing this, stayed Naomi with a hand on her forearm.

One voice spoke up, a harsh female one, “The one you most likely seek is known as Greta the Black, a servant of the fey leader called the King of Twilight. She was one of his youngest servants, and managed to hide when he and his kin were expelled.’

“Why was he expelled?’ Naomi asked.

A male voice answered her. “He and his kind claimed to bring magic to earth, saying they would guide us into a golden age,’ he paused as one of the other voices laughed bitterly. “But in truth, they were stealing magic from Earth. The magical energy of Earth is largely untapped, and would have made the King of Twilight a god. But the greatest human mages of the time united and drove the Fey from the earth before they could do any damage. The mages created a barrier between our realities, and the Fey no longer possess the strength to break the barrier.’

“Then why was Naomi attacked by a servant of Greta?’ Johna asked.

A younger female voice spoke up. “I would guess that somehow Greta has weakened the barrier, allowing the King of Twilight to break through with sufficient power. The King would feed off Naomi´s extraordinary power and destroy the barrier.’

This information disturbed Naomi but she refused to let Red Guardian suffer and not do anything about it. “How do I find Greta?’

“You possess the ability to track magic, don´t you?’ a mocking male voice said. “That is how you will find her.’

“But if you are defeated and the King of Twilight is freed, there are no mages left to stand against him,’ the voices said, speaking in unison once again.

“We understand Spirit Watchers, and thank you.’ The blue glow around Johna began to fade, and suddenly they were back in the pantry.

“Well, I can´t hope that you will get one of your friends to pursue Greta?’ Johna said as they stepped out of the pantry and sat down at the kitchen table.

“No way, Red Guardian is in trouble because of me,’ Naomi said forcefully. “Besides, I can deal with this Greta myself.’

“I know you possess the strength, but she has hundreds of years of experience on you,’ Johna said. “She will probably expect you to track her and she will be prepared.’

“So will I,’ Naomi said, her fierce blue eyes hardening.


“Idiot!’ Greta yelled at Master Metal for the sixth time since he returned holding the wrong heroine. “I give you tools, the element of surprise, and you still can´t get the job done.’

“She showed up out of nowhere,’ Master Metal said defensively. “It threw me off and I lost track of time. Why didn´t you just bring me back when I secured Sorceress in the first place?’

“Because I had to track Sorceress by her energy pulse since she is far too sensitive to scry. Also, teleporting is a very sophisticated spell and drains me of energy. But I would have risked it if I had known you were going to fail in your duties!’

Master Metal sighed and looked down at Red Guardian. The slender, black and red clad heroine had lost her supernatural red glow and now lay unconscious.

When they arrived in the tower, Red Guardian had adapted to the situation far faster that Master Metal and Greta, attacking immediately.

She broke Master Metal´s bear hug and landed a vicious mule kick while floating in the air, sending the confused Master Metal sprawling. She then warily measured up the shocked Greta.

“You must be the servant of the Fey, well I am Red Guardian and you are no longer going to threaten the world with your misuse of magic.’

Greta´s confusion gave way to anger, then pure outrage. “Stupid child, I will devour your soul!’ Greta said, becoming enveloped in green magic.

It was Red Guardian´s turn to be surprised and she barely dodged the green tentacles of magic that Greta willed towards her. Red Guardian formed a sword of red energy, slicing through the tentacles, put on the defensive by Greta´s attack.

With her attention focused on the grabbing tentacles, she did not notice Master Metal rising and changing back into his black metal form. He charged the unsuspecting Red Guardian and threw a straight right into the small of her back.

“Ahh!’ Red Guardian howled as she hit the floor face first. She never got a chance to recover, as Greta´s tentacles converged on her with animal-like speed. They secured her quickly, completely wrapping her body. Weakened by Master Metal´s surprise attack, Red Guardian was too disoriented to fight back. The tentacles drained Red Guardian´s magic and smothered her in their mummifying embrace.

Master Metal watched fascinated as the tentacles squeezed harder and Red Guardian´s squirming and moaning stopped. When the tentacles withdrew, Red Guardian was unconscious, her aura of power gone.

Then the berating began, Greta hurling curses and insults, her pale face glowing red.

“I going to turn you into a big, metal bulldog, you dumb bastard!’ she yelled. She was about to say more, when her eyes grew wide and her hand flew to her head as if she was suddenly disoriented.

Master Metal watched apprehensively as Greta muttered under her breath. Finally she stopped, swooning slightly before addressing him.

“Some good news at last,’ she with a gruesome smile. “Take this one to the dungeons and chain her. I will be down shortly with a guest.’

Greta turned and left, leaving a bewildered Master Metal to gather Red Guardian and head to the dungeons. Still in his black metal form, he flung Red Guardian over his shoulder, his hand on her ass, her long hair streaming down behind him, and her breasts pressed up against his back. As he left the room he saw Greta racing excitedly up the stairs. Shaking his head, he began descending into the bowels of the tower.

It was a long descent, the tower going deeper that Master Metal thought physically possible. He focused on the feel of the super heroine pressed against him and her firm, athletic ass in his massive palm.

Finally he reached the dungeon. The great black iron door opened for him automatically. He was surprised at how warm and clean it was, and further surprised at the fact that the dungeon had an occupant already.

Battlecry was chained to the far right wall facing the door, slumped in thick chains that held her arms above her head. Her ankles were chained together, but not connected to the wall. Also a band similar to the ones he used to secure Sorceress covered the lower half of Battlecry´s face, making sound impossible.

Battlecry´s eyes were full of hate as he watched him take Red Guardian to the opposite wall and chain her there. After securing her arms over her head in a similar manner to Battlecry, Master Metal turned to other heroine, a big grin on his face as he changed into his human form. He pressed his body up against Battlecry, who had nowhere to go.

“When this is over, you are mine sweet girl,’ he said, roughly grabbing her chin.

Pinned against the hard stone wall, Battlecry could do nothing but glare into Master Metal´s eyes. Taking advantage of Battlecry´s helplessness, he turned head and licked the side of her face slowly. He also began massaging her small, pert breasts through the material of her costume.

As he was deciding what to do next, he heard a buzzing sound, then a sharp burning pain in the side of his head. He fell to the floor with a scream of pain.

“I told you to secure Red Guardian, nothing more!’ Greta yelled.

Master Metal was about to retort when he noticed that Greta was not alone. He froze in terror as he studied the inhuman figure now accompanying Greta.

The creature was tall, well over six feet, but looked to weigh no more than ninety pounds. It had small bumps under the drab, loose grey shirt it wore that he suspected were breasts. She had grey, dead skin and close cropped white hair. Her eyes were completely yellow and her mouth was far wider than a normal human´s. She revealed razor sharp teeth as she gave him a chilling grin.

“What is that?!’ Master Metal asked, involuntarily changing into his black metal form.

The change delighted the creature, who clapped and did a strange little dance. She ran up to him, kneeled and began sniffing. Master Metal stayed perfectly still, waiting to see if the frail creature would attack. He would have already hit her, but he wanted to avoid further angering Greta if he could.

The creature pulled away with a look of disappointment on her alien face. She bounded back to Greta whining.

“This is Deaththroe,’ Greta said. “She is one of my master´s greatest servants.’

At Master Metal´s look of disbelief, Greta directed Deaththroe toward Battlecry, who had been watching the exchange apprehensively. The creature walked up to Battlecry, sniffed her, and then giggled with delight. She then took a wide-legged stance in front of Battlecry, and inhaled as if she were taking a deep breath.

Battlecry suddenly stiffened, and begin to glow with a pale and sickly light. The strange creature began to share that glow, and moan in pleasure as her figure filled out slowly, and Battlecry began to sweat vigorously.

“Our little friend has something called a ‘Warrior Spirit´,’ Greta said. “A magical entity that gives Battlecry her abnormal abilities. This mystical energy is now feeding Deaththroe, giving her power that she has not had in more than 1500 years.’

“Your failure has forced my master to act sooner than we hoped. If you knew what it took to get Deaththroe here and what it cost my master, you would be terrified. But there is still a chance to redeem yourself. Now go outside until we summon you,’ Greta dismissed him with a wave of her hand as she made her way to the slowly stirring Red Guardian.

As Master Metal left the cell, Deaththroe had stopped feeding on Battlecry, who was now passed out in her chains. Deaththroe was noticeably healthier, though still gaunt. When she turned her hungry yellow eyes on Master Metal, he quickly stepped out of the room.

As Master Metal stood outside the door in the torch-lit corridor, he tried to come to terms with what he just witnessed. He listened to the sounds coming from the cell. He could hear moans, whimpers, flesh slapping on flesh, and Deaththroe´s laughs of insane delight.

He stood outside almost an hour before Greta stuck her head out to beckon him in. She was flushed and sweaty with her leather clothes in disarray. It was the first time she appeared alive to Master Metal, instead of some kind of moving mannequin.

The two heroines were beside each other in very uncomfortable positions. Both were nude and covered in sweat. Red Guardian hung upside down, a complex network of black rope running from her to the ceiling. She was bound at wrists, elbows, knees, and ankles. Tight rope crisscrossed her torso. A thick padded gag covered the lower half of her face, her eyes blinked weakly over it, attempting to focus.

Battlecry was also upside down from the ceiling, though in a different manner. An armbinder secured her arms to the ceiling, connected by thin but strong rope. Black leather cuffs clamped each ankle, spreading her legs wide open. A thin cloth hood covered her head, allowing only a few wisps of hair to stick out.

Deaththroe stood between the two heroines, absorbing their energy slowly. She now resembled a lean track athlete, with sculpted powerful muscles standing out on her bare arms and through the material of her skintight black pants and small, pointy breasts on a muscular chest. She grinned wickedly at him, her eyes filled with ecstasy.

The flushed and pleased looking Greta grabbed him by his arm and led him out of the room. She closed the door and studied him for a long time.

“I showed you that so you could understand the nature of my master. He and Deaththroe belong to a fantastical race that, with our help, can become gods. Their rewards will be infinite and beyond imagining,’ she let out a strange, girlish laugh. “You can redeem yourself. Sorceress will attempt to track my magic pulse, and I will let her. She cannot find the tower without even further help, so follow me.’

Bewildered and more frightened that he would ever admit, Master Metal reluctantly followed Greta to the top of the tower, which opened out into the air. Even with his fitness level, the trek winded Master Metal. As he caught his breath, he studied the bizarre sight in front of him.

The tower sat on nothing, floating above the ocean water, surrounded by thick, rolling fog. A jagged, ancient walkway jutted out of the front of the tower for about twenty-five yards.

He turned his attention from the jolting sight to Greta, who was preparing a spell. She spread her legs wide and raised her open right hand above her head. She began humming and her hand glowed with green fire. Soon the whole glow enveloped her, and Master Metal could feel the power rolling off her.

“Reveal!’ she screamed, and the world seemed to shudder and lose focus.

Master Metal had to fight to keep from vomiting, going down to his knees and squeezing his eyes shut tight. He counted to ten, breathing deeply and regained control of himself. When he stood up, he looked around and noticed that nothing had changed. Puzzled, he looked at Greta for answers.

“I only revealed ourselves to people of great magical talent like Sorceress,’ she said. “Otherwise we would be swarmed by super heroines.’

She fixed him with a hard stare. “Now is your chance. I want you to stay here and draw Sorceress into the tower. You don´t have to beat her, just get her inside. But if you defeat her, the rewards will be considerable.’

With that, Greta turned and left Master Metal, dreaming of all he ever wanted. No matter what, he thought, Sorceress is mine.

To Be Continued...

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