KoTiel ran through the hallways, Trying to follow Dwig. After a few turns they slowed down, though. "Guess I lost him," they said to themselves. Continuing to walk, they reached a larger, open room. Just as they walked through it, they saw a number of chaos marines enter through another door. "Ah, rust," they said, while the marines charged at them. The front one hit them away, hurling them towards the wall. Smacking against the wall, KoTiel leaned against it, dazed, while the marine rushed forward again, intending to finish them off. KoTiel tapped zinc, getting just enough awareness back to see the marine, and dropped to the ground, dodging under the fist. Creating some distance, they started preparing themselves.
Taking a stance, they started channeling the Dor into their bones, and slowly started burning their zinc, and felt their thoughts speed up, world slowing down. At the same time, the marines surrounding them rushed forwards, intent on killing them.
Inhale. KoTiel saw the marines, knew how they moved. Why wouldn't they move that way? After examining all possibilities, it was the only one that worked. Exhale. They moved in between the arms, the punches, and moved towards one of the marines, punching their chest, fist moving with unnatural speed. The armor block it, cracking, but not breaking. They kept moving, dodging fists, tackles, kicks, hitting marines on their armor. The whole time, they shifted their flesh around, keeping their body moving as fast as possible. "Faster," they thought, as they dodged a punch by a hair's breadth. "Faster." They increased the amount of Dor they channeled, their bones growing hot. They turned, punching a marine on their breastplate, breaking through it, smashing their chest. They moved around, trying to calculate the movements of the rest of the marines. They increased the burn of their zinc, flaring it, until the world stood still, and they calculate everything, moving between the marines, untouched, always finding the weak-spots in their their armor, destroying it as they danced among them. Increasing the amount of Dor they used, they killed a second marine, and a third, always moving at impossible speeds, with impossible strength, not even noticing the burning from their bones.
their mind went blank, and they fell to the ground. The Dor vanished from their bones, now brittle, and all strength faded from their body. Their zinc faded out, not because their stores ran out, but because their powers had faded out. Without it, their mind felt dull, blank. One of the marines put his boot through their chest, and they stopped moving.
Slowly, KoTiel crawled along the ground, trying to get into the alley. There, they collapsed. "It's getting dark," they thought. "Where is KanMien? It's been so long, they should have been here already." They looked up to the sky, seeing the sun. "I see," they thought. "I'm dying." They thought back, thinking about their life, when they first came to being in the Homeland, their mentor, how she had disappeared, and how they met again after the Catacendre. Coming to the alleys, and finding the Dark Alley, their mind skipping over how they got inducted, their loyalty spike working even now. They thought of KanMien, how they felt when they created them, and they smiled. They felt the blood leaving their body, and wrote something on the ground. Smiling, they stopped moving,
KanMien ran through the alleys, hoping that they weren't too late. They had received KoTiel's message while getting back from the wedding, and immediately hurried towards their location. Rounding the corner, they saw a body lying on the ground, fleshing dripping off a disintegrating skeleton. "No, no, no, no, no," they said, anxiously. They saw the shapes in the bone, and the spikes coming out of their body, and knew they were looking at KoTiel. Sinking to their knees besides them, they looked him over. Silently, they took his spikes, two copper spikes coming apart as they touched them, three other spikes remaining, a brass and a bronze spike, warped, as if heated for too long, and a single spike they couldn't identify, which slowly crumbled as well. They palmed the two remaining spikes, and looked over to what remained of their hand, and saw a message written in blood.
When they came back, they went to their room, and stored away the spikes in a vial of blood, and went to bed. Lying there, they slowly started crying, still thinking about KoTiel's last message for them: "KanMien, be yourself."