A Slayers Fanfic.
By: Niki 'NeeP' Paradis
Chapter Three: Let the Search Begin!
One young thief woke up to a pounding headache and queasiness
in her stomach. She felt drained and wondered if the particular experience
that she was feeling was what a hangover was supposed to be like. She
was quick to assume that it was.
I have decided that I DON'T like hangovers, thought
Kitsuan to herself. She shook her head and immediately regretted it.
She waited a few more minutes until the spinning in her head had stopped.
She had opened her eyes to a comfortable room and bright
cheery sunshine streaming through her windows. She groaned and turned
over to bury her head into her pillow.
Just one more hour, she thought. Or actually,
another day wouldn't hurt either.
Unfortunately, she was out of luck.
"Kit?" came a familiar voice from outside her door.
"Are you awake?"
"No, I'm not," she mumbled as she heard the door to her
room open anyway.
Copy came strolling into her room, closing the door behind
him, and opened the curtains. "It's time to get up," he said.
Great, sighed Kitsuan, he's a morning person...
"Leave me alone, Copy...," she moaned. "I'm dying
Copy looked at her sympathetically for a moment.
"What you need is some food in you," he said. "Everything's always
better after breakfast."
The young thief was starting to understand that 'Food'
was Copy's answer to everything. "Why aren't you suffering like I am?"
she asked. "You had waaaaaaay more to drink than I did."
Copy sat down on the edge of the bed, as if the act of
thinking was draining him of all of his energy. "I don't know," he
said finally. "I woke up with a headache, but as soon as I wished for
it to go away, it did."
Kitsuan sat up suddenly and regretted it instantly.
"You wished for it to go away? And it did?" she asked as she held her
"Well... I might have said something else," admitted
the young man, "but I have forgotten what."
Kit fell back into the pillow. "Figures..." she
mumbled as she pulled the blankets over her head.
"C'mon, Kit. We really have to be going soon," he
"I don't wanna," Kitsuan whined. "Why do we hafta
go so early?"
"Hohohohohohohohohohohohoo!" came an evil laugh
from outside the room.
"Well," said Copy, " I wanted to get away before she came
to." He jerked a thumb towards the closed door.
The door burst open and Naga the Black Serpent strode
into the room.
"There you are!" she exclaimed. "Did you think that
you could get away from me?"
"Uhm..." said Copy as he strove to think of a suitable
"I don't wanna deal with this," groaned Kitsuan as she
pulled the blankets even tighter around her head. "Go away, like the
bad dream that you are..."
"Oh, no, you little thief," growled the tall scary woman
as she pulled the covers off of the bed. "You took something from me
that I needed!"
"Hey!" shrieked the young girl. "What the hell do
you think you’re doing?!? There's a guy present!" Kit stole a
glance at Copy as she used her hands to cover herself up.
"Relax," muttered the scantily clad woman, gesturing to
Kitsuan's tank top and panties. "You're wearing more than I am, and
you don't have as much to show anyways."
"Hey!" Kit was now feeling more angry than exposed.
She looked at Copy to see what he thought, but found him otherwise occupied.
"Huh?" said Copy as he tried unsuccessfully to remove
his eyes from Naga's heaving chest. How do they stay in there?
he asked himself. Glue? It must be one of the greatest
mysteries of life.
"Copy!" shouted Kitsuan. How can he be so fascinated
with that woman's chest?
The tall strawberry-blonde young man tore his gaze from
the strange mystery and look towards his friend. "Gee, Kit...
Where are your clothes?"
"Ahhh! Copy! Turn away!"
Copy spun around, confused. Why was she yelling
In disgust, Naga threw the covers back onto the bed.
"Never mind him. Where's the bag you stole from me?"
"We won the medallion fair and square!" exclaimed Copy
who was still facing the other way.
"The medallion, maybe. But my purse?"
"Purse?" asked Copy as he turned around.
"Yeah," grunted the tall woman, "my purse."
"Kit..." One of Copy's eyebrows lifted ominously as he
turned to face her.
"Yeah, yeah... I'm sorry that I took your stupid
purse," she mumbled as she sat up. "It's over there, on the chair."
She pointed in the proper direction.
The tall woman strode to the piece of furniture and picked
up her missing property. She harrumphed and stuffed the small pouch
down the front of her brassier. Copy's eyes bugged open wide as he
watched the action.
"You mean that there's room in there?!?" he asked incredulously.
Naga smirked at the tall dumb man. "With babies
this big, there's almost nothing that I can't keep in between them."
"Oh." No real emotion or intelligence showed on
the young man's face, so Naga quickly figured that he was a lost cause and
turned to leave.
"You better leave that medallion behind," suggested Copy.
The white serpent stopped suddenly. "Whatever do
you mean?" she asked, her voice straining to sound innocent.
"I know that you stuffed in with your purse," said Copy.
"We won it fair and square... Give it back."
The tall woman turned and stared challengingly at the
foolish man. "Take it from me, if you dare," she said.
"Um..." Copy didn't know how to respond to that.
He knew that it was wrong to stuff hands down where they weren't welcomed.
He knew that it meant trouble if he did it by accident, and he certainly
didn't want to try it on purpose.
"Hohoho! I didn't think so..." The tall woman
turned to leave.
"For cryin' out loud, Copy!" snarled the young thief as
she leaped from her bed, blankets and all and grappled with the taller woman.
She plunged her hand into the region where her friend did not dare to tread
and pulled out the treasure. She leaped off of Naga and thrust the
medallion at Copy, who took it dumbly. Then she drew the blankets tighter
around her and practically leaped for the comfort of the bed.
The White Serpent stood stunned for a moment, her face
red. Then she went thoughtful.
"'Copy'..." she mused. "Now what was it about
that name that I have heard before..?" Then she reached again down
the front of her brassier and pulled out a piece of parchment. She
began to chortle, as she looked it over.
"Now what?" groaned Kitsuan from under the pile of blankets
on the bed.
"I have just remembered something of great importance!
"What is it?" asked Copy.
"Someone important in a puny town called Leyrun has put
out a warrant for your arrest... Did you know that?"
The young man sighed. "I'm not really surprised,"
he said. "They were pretty upset."
"They didn't say why, but they insist on having you brought
in." The scary woman reached once again down into forbidden depths,
and pulled out what appears to be a small gem, and she held it up casually.
"I have never had the use of these things before, but I am certain that it
would do the trick.
"What is it?" asked Copy in a confused voice. There
was something in the back of his mind that was telling him to run, but he
didn't know why he needed to be afraid of a little jewel.
Naga flicked the small gem with unerring aim towards Copy.
He yelped as he felt a sharp pain in the middle of his forehead. Kitsuan
poked her head out from under the covers at the sound. She looked towards
her friend who stood, stunned.
"Copy?" asked Kit to her friend. "Hey, Copy?
Are you okay?"
He didn't answer.
The young thief got out of bed with the blankets still
wrapped around her. She went up to her friend and waved her hand in
front of his face, trying to grab his attention. It didn't work.
"Copy?" she asked again.
Kitsuan was beginning to become concerned. He wasn't
reaching for his sword, or even looking at Naga. He wasn't reacting
at all. He just stood there with a blanker expression than what she
quickly had come to know as normal. She wondered if the crystal that
had adhered to her friend's forehead had something to do with Copy's lack
"Hohohohohoho oh ho!" chortled the barely clad
sorceress. "He is under my control, little thief. He will do
whatever I say!"
"No!" cried Kit in disbelief.
"Copy!" commanded the tall woman. "Seize her!"
Like a marionette, the young man turned to the young girl
and started to move stiffly towards her. Kitsuan backed away, nearly
tripping over the blankets wrapped around her and quickly bumped into the
chair where she left her clothes the night before --and her dagger!
She seized her trusty dagger and yanked it out of its
sheath. "Back off, Copy!" I don't want to hurt you!" But her
words had no effect on him.
Now she had a problem. Copy was the first person
she felt that she could trust in a very long time. She didn't want
to kill him. But as long as he had that damn crystal on his forehead...
As stiffly as Copy was moving, Kitsuan had the advantage.
She chuckled at how easily it would be. As Copy reached to grab her,
Kit used the pommel of her dagger against his forehead --and the crystal.
And Copy fell to the ground unconscious.
Naga stood stunned at the moment, over how quickly her
plan had come undone. The she snarled at the young girl. "You
owe me for that Control Crystal!"
Kitsuan was astounded by the charge. "You Bitch!"
shouted the young thief. "What the hell did you think you were doing?!?"
"My job," retorted the tall woman. "Even a woman
of my famed ability has to earn bread to eat, and that-" she pointed to the
still unconscious Copy, "--was going to be my meal ticket!"
Kitsuan was suddenly standing in front of Naga, her protective
covering of blankets were left on the floor behind her. She had the
point of her dagger just under the taller woman's chin. Naga's eyes
were opened wide.
"What are you doing?!?" she asked in a very small panicked
"What I am doing," said Kit softly, "is giving you until
the count of three to leave... Or else."
"What will you do?" asked Naga. "You won't kill
me. And even if I leave, I will be free to track you down later."
"I will deal with that later. But for now, you better
The tall woman sniffed, spun around and strode out of
Kit glared at the still opened door for a moment, then
she slammed it shut.
"Wow, Kit. That was pretty impressive."
She turned to face Copy, who was starting to sit up.
"How are you feeling?" she asked him.
"Okay, I guess." The young man winced. "Except
my headache seemed to have come back."
"It will go away in a bit," assured the young girl.
Copy nodded. "I'm gonna go downstairs," he said.
"I am very hungry."
"Okay, I will be down in a bit."
Copy grinned. "Alright." He got up and walked
to the door. He pulled it open again, paused and turned around.
"Hey, Kitsuan?" he asked.
"I dunno if green panties suit you. You might want
to try another colour."
The young thief shrieked. And Kit's dagger was suddenly
imbedded in the door jam beside Copy's head. Actually, only an inch
away from it.
"I was just trying to be helpful..." protested Copy.
"Get out!!!" yelled Kitsuan.
An hour later, Kitsuan and Copy were sitting at a table
with the remains of an extremely large meal sitting on it.
Aside from feeling a little miffed at Copy, the young
thief did feel better after she had eaten. Her headache was still there,
but now it was manageable. She was surprised at how much orange juice
she had drank.
"Well, we had fun over the last couple of days," commented
Kitsuan. "Now what?"
"Um," grunted the tall young man.
"Did you want to stick together?" she asked in a half
hopeful way. "Is there something that you have to do?" Kitsuan
didn't want to be on her own again so soon. Copy was a nice guy, even
if he doesn't seem to be completely there all the time. Not that she
thought of him as anything else but a friend. But she hadn't had a
friend for a very long time.
"Well," said Copy slowly. "I have to go find someone...
Or two someones, actually..."
"Oh?" asked the young thief. "Who?"
"I gotta go find Lina. Maybe Gourry too..."
"Um..." Copy suddenly seemed unsure of himself.
"You promise not to laugh?"
"Promise," she said.
The tall young man took a deep breath. "There's
something in the back of my mind that I don't understand. I have Gourry's
memories, so I know that he never had this, uh, feeling before. And
because I know that, that must mean that Lina might know what's this odd
"So, you're gonna go look for this Lina because of a 'feeling'?"
"That's a pretty strange reason, Copy," said the young
thief. "But it works for me."
"Really? You want to come along?"
"Yeah, sure. Why not?" Kit grinned at her friend.
"It could be fun." More fun than being on my own again, with no
one to trust.
"Where are we going, Lina?" asked Gourry Gabriev as he
trudged behind the young sorceress.
Gourry had the right to ask. He, Lina and the others
have been travelling for a month. They had met with Zelgadis and Amelia
in the city, and now they were travelling together.
"We are going to a small town called Leyrun," replied
"According to the information that I've dug out of the
Royal Library, there's a manuscript that contains a translation of the runes
on this other manuscript."
"And according to the historian," commented Zelgadis,
"this manuscript is being held in a school in the village."
"Do you think that we can find a cure for your condition,
Mister Zelgadis?" asked Amelia.
"One can always hope," sighed the Chimera. Providing
that I get to it before Lina does..., he thought.
"What are the chances that we would all meet in Seyroon,
all looking for the same idol-whatchamacallit?" asked Gourry cheerfully.
"Yeah," muttered Lina. "What were the odds..?"
Now I have to share...
"Well," said the swordsman, "it's great to be travelling
"Yeah!" agreed Amelia enthusiastically.
Soon, they came to the outskirts of the town. It
was almost twilight, and most everyone was inside his or her homes eating
dinner. Thus, the streets were empty as they strolled along.
"There's something very familiar about this place," commented
"Do you think so, Miss Lina?" asked the Princess.
"Yeah, I do."
"Is this something that you should be sharing with the
rest of us?" asked Zelgadis.
Gourry was distracted by a sheet of parchment that was
nailed to the side of a building. He walked towards it and took a closer
look. Then he pulled it off the wall and walked back to the group.
"Hey, Lina. I think you should take a look at this."
"What's that, Mister Gourry?" asked Amelia.
Lina grabbed the parchment from her companion's hand and
stared at it. She started cursing under her breath. "I have forgotten
about that," she finally muttered.
Zelgadis took the parchment from the young woman.
He sighed as he looked at it.
"What is it?" asked Amelia. The chimera passed the
sheet over. The princess gasped as she realised that she was staring
at a wanted poster for Miss Lina. They were asking for a lot of money
too. "What are we going to do, Miss Lina?"
"Aside from leaving as soon as possible, I can't really
think of anything."
"We're lucky that everyone's inside, then," said Gourry.
"That's for certain," agreed Zel.
"Should we go get some disguises?" asked Amelia.
"No!" exclaimed the men of the group. The idea of
disguises disturbed them for some reason.
"We don't have time," grunted Lina. Let's go in,
find this Master Thomas, get the manuscript and leave as soon as possible."
"But what if the headmaster isn’t at the school?" asked
"We'll figure it out then. We'll know in a few moments
anyhow." And it was true, as they had just reached the gates of the
An old man was just locking up the school for the night.
After checking the lock, he turned away from the doors and saw them standing
there. His eyes opened wide at the sight of Lina and her companions.
"You!" he shouted. The tone was accusing.
In an extremely comfortable house, Lina and company sat
around a huge meal, served by a very cheerful older woman.
"So, you're the famous Lina Inverse!" exclaimed the woman.
"The one who destroyed Phibrizzo and Gaav? More than glad to meet you."
"Uh, thanks," said Lina. "You know, this food is
"As always Tilly," agreed Master Thomas.
"It's great to be cooking for someone else again," bubble
the older woman. "Since Copy left, I don’t get to cook as much as I
would like. Thom and I don't need to eat as much."
"Copy?" asked Gourry with his mouth full.
"Our nephew," replied the aging wizard.
"You remind me a great deal of him," said Tilly to Gourry,
as she piled another couple of scoops of mashed potatoes onto the swordsman's
"I do?" asked Gourry.
Lina noticed that Master Thomas suddenly rolled his eyes
up at the comparison of his missing nephew to her partner. Maybe Mistress
Tilly compared a lot of young men to this Copy.
"You eat the same way that he does," replied Tilly.
"We're really sorry about that last time," said Amelia
Lina stopped eating. The last time? she thought.
Master Thomas actually chuckled. "Not a problem,
Lass. I got that kopii machine up and running again within a few months.
No lasting damage was done to it."
Oh, that. Lina blushed. That was why
the whole town and the old man seemed familiar.
"Yeah," she mumbled. "Really sorry about that."
Gourry looked blank. As usual.
Soon dinner was done and the old wizard looked apprehensively
at all of the empty dishes. Amelia immediately offered to help with
the cleaning, but Tilly refused. Guests do not assist in the cleaning.
It just wasn't right. Amelia sighed, then turned back to the conversation
that Lina was having with the old wizard.
"Anyway, from what the scholars of Seyroon were telling
me, you have a particular manuscript that I need."
"Aye, lass?" asked Master Thomas as he drew on his pipe.
"And which manuscript are you talking about?"
"It is an old worthless thing, really," said Lina, as
she drew out a sheet of parchment on which she painstakingly replicated the
odd Symbols that she couldn't understand on it. She didn't want the
old man to see the original. Zelgadis nodded his approval at Lina's
The headmaster of the wizard's school studied the scrap
of parchment. "You know lass, I think that I just might have that manuscript
that you require. I do not have a use for it."
"So, you'll give it to us?!?" Lina asked with excitement
shining in her eyes.
"Nay, I will not just give it to you, lass," retorted
"But," replied Lina, turning on her charm, "you said that
it is of no use to you..."
"That I did, lass."
"But..." sniffled Lina.
"What do you want for the manuscript, Master Thomas?"
"Ah," smiled the old wizard. "You're willing to
"Depends on the cost," countered the chimera.
"All right, lads and lasses, we shall deal. For
this manuscript that you need, I will gladly give to you --If you could
go find my nephew and bring him here."
"You want us to go get your nephew?" asked Lina incredulously.
"Look pal, we're no bounty hunters."
"No lass. What you are, are a group of determined
young people who need a scroll from me. So, you will find my nephew,
Copy, and bring him here to us."
"We'll do it," said Zelgadis immediately.
"But..." protested Lina.
"Please lass," insisted Master Thomas. "I am truly
worried about him, and Tilly misses him. I need someone to go and tell
the lad that things aren't as bad here as they once were."
"Right," sighed Lina. "So which way was your nephew
Kitsuan was sitting at the table at the inn, waiting for
her friend to return. The remains of a small plate of a strange local
food called nachos sat in front of her. She was thinking about her
relationship with the strange young man who called himself 'Copy'.
But the thinking did not distract her from getting her work done. She
reached over and managed to discretely snag a heavy purse from the pocket
of an overly dressed and overly fed elderly gentleman. Trying not to
hum to herself in triumph, the young girl pocketed the pouch into her own
pocket. Now that she had acquired the funds to feed her companion when
he returned, she could now focus her attention on figuring him out.
Who is Copy, anyway? she wondered. He was
a tall young man, with lavender eyes and incredibly long strawberry-blonde
hair. He had an open honest face, which at most times appeared to be
totally devoid of thought, and at others seemed to hold deep knowledge of
strange things. He was a fabulous swordsman, who sometimes seemed positive
that there were other methods to do things. But whatever the other
knowledge or methods were, he didn't seem too positive that he knew exactly
what they were.
He had confided in her and explained that he was a kopii,
a duplicate of another person, but an imperfect one. He was actually
created out of two people, when he was supposed to be of only one.
He had all of the memories and skills of a professional swordsman, and some
undefined 'feeling' that he had inherited from a magic-genius.
Kitsuan wasn't sure that she understood Copy's mission
either. He said that he was on a quest to find the infamous Lina Inverse,
the bandit killer. He said that he was positive that she would be able
to explain the reason for the unusual thoughts and bits of knowledge in his
head. --or something.
But until he found what he was looking for, he assumed
the role of a mercenary, a swordsman for hire. Which suited Kitsuan
just fine. Between her own skills and the money that Copy brought in,
they should be able to earn enough to travel comfortably--providing that
the profits weren't eaten up.
Kit was surprised that she agreed to go with Copy on his
bizarre search. She had made casual contacts before with people when
it suited her needs, but the relationship would end once the task was done.
She couldn't quite figure out why she wanted to stay with the young man.
She knew that despite his off remarks, that he wasn't at all interested in
her as anything outside of a friend. Which suited the young thief just
fine. She wasn't in the market for a boyfriend yet anyway. But
Copy was a good friend already, and she knew that they would get through
any situation just fine as long as they stick together.
And the search was made even harder by the fact that there
were bounty hunters after him. Sometimes they were after Copy with
a warrant from the town of Leyrun, where he came from and sometimes a bounty
hunter would mistake him for a Gourry Gabriev. Between Copy's and her
own skills, they had managed to keep the bounty hunters at bay. So
Kitsuan started to pick at the plate of nachos,
wondering again about how the heck they were going to find a single sorceress
who could be anywhere--anywhere in all the land. She was concentrating
so hard on the situation, that she wasn't aware of anyone walking up to her
until she heard a voice. They have been travelling for over a month
now, following rumours and hints that seemed to lead to other rumours and
"Please don't tell me that is all there is for food,"
commented a dismayed voice.
"Don't worry, Copy," replied the young thief, " I got
the money for more." Then she looked up at the face of her companion
and gasped. "What happened to your hair?!?"
Copy sat down at the table and rubbed ruefully at the
back of his head and his new haircut. "I sold it. I figured that
it was the easiest way to earn the money for the headband. It cost
me quite a bit, you know." He fingered the plain black headband on
his forehead. Then he started to eat what was left of the nachos.
Kitsuan snorted in disgust. "But it's so plain.
If you wanted a headband, I could've gotten you a better one and much cheaper
"You mean that you would have stolen one for me, is that
it?" he asked.
There was no answer. Copy shook his head, and shook
a nacho chip at her.
"I'm not going into that lecture again, Kit. You
know how I feel about your stealing. But this is a special headband.
It will keep off those Control Gems that that scary woman and any other bounty
hunter could throw at me."
"They didn't seem so powerful."
"Well, that Naga woman simply wasn't very good in using
Kitsuan blinked in confusion. "So why get it now?
Why not right after that attack?"
"This is the first town that I could find that carried
the things, y'know?"
"How do you know that the headband is going to work?"
Copy stopped. He looked confused. He looked
thoughtful for a moment. Then he shrugged.
"I really don't know how I know," he said. "I just
A huge sweat-drop formed on the young thief's head.
"B-but your hair..." she whimpered.
"It will grow back," said Copy confidentially. "It's
just that in the present circumstances, I'd rather have free will than long
"You'd better grow it back," muttered Kitsuan.
"No problem." Copy blinked at his friends concern
over his hair, then looked sadly at the now empty plate in front of him.
"Can we order more food now?" he asked hopefully.
"Sure," said the young thief loftily. "Order anything
you want." She remembered that earlier that day, she and Copy had shared
a huge breakfast. She was positive that he couldn't possibly be too
"Great!" Copy waved over a serving girl. "Hey
Miss. What the house special today?"
"Roast beef with potatoes, peas, carrots, garlic bread
and salad," replied the girl.
"Sounds good --but I'm not as hungry as I usually am..."
Kitsuan breathed a sigh of relief. Maybe there
will be money left over for once, she thought for herself.
"...So I'll only have five servings today!" finished the
Kitsuan fell out of the chair with a thud. Her hands
and legs were in the o-yakusoku pozu position.
Oblivious to Kitsuan's position on the floor, Copy looked
around the room, then he focused his attention on the young girl as she was
climbing back into her seat.
"Are you okay?" he asked.
"Yeah, sure. Just peachy," she muttered. "I'm
just surprised that you're not eating as much as you usually do," she said
"Yeah," said Copy, oblivious to the sarcasm. "Usually
I eat seven or eight servings." He sighed. "I guess I'm just
not that hungry..."
Yet another sweat-drop formed on the back of the young
thief's head. "You're amazing..." she said under her breath.
"So did you find anything about where Lina went to?" he
asked as he absent-mindedly rubbed his audibly growling stomach.
Kitsuan shook her head. "Only that she and her group
of 'brigands' went through here a few months ago."
"Oh? Did you find out which way they were going?"
The serving girl came back to the table, heavily laden
with huge platters that threatened to topple. She managed to set them
down before Copy grabbed a fork and stabbed the nearest roast. Shaking
her head in astonishment, the girl turned to the young thief and presented
her with the bill. Kitsuan sighed and handed the girl most of the money
that she had just liberated from the elderly gentleman. She turned
back to her companion to reply.
"I only heard that they were headed east."
"Mmmph. Then that's a good place to look then, right?"
asked Copy with his mouthful, already on his second serving of roast beef.
"Yeah, I guess," started the thief. Then she glared
at her companion. "Why do you have to eat like that?!? Doesn't
your memories tell you how Lina Inverse ate? I'm willing to bet that
she was more civilized."
Copy put down his chunk of roast beef for a moment.
"Nope!" he said cheerfully. "She was much worse. Me--I mean,
Gourry and Lina often competed to see who ate the most and who got the last
bite of food."
Another huge sweat-drop formed on the back of Kitsuan's
head. "And you want to find this person?!?" she asked, astonished.
Copy took a breath between mouthfuls. "I already
told you why." Then he went back to inhaling his meal.
The young thief could only watch in amazement as the food
disappeared into the black hole that was her companion's mouth.
Ten minutes later, Copy was wiping his mouth with the back of his hand.
"That was great," he beamed, patting his stomach.
"I wonder what this place has for dessert..."
Kitsuan shot up out of her chair with rage. "No
dessert! We can't afford dessert!" she yelled. You already ate
up most of our funds, Copy!"
"Copy?!?" asked a burly man who resembled a thug but was
dressed in a gaudy purple wizard's robe. He stood up from the bar and
sauntered over to the table where the two sat. "Let me see if I understand
this right, you're name is Copy, right?" he asked pleasantly.
"You got it." The tall young man, nodded enthusiastically.
"Hey!" hissed Kitsuan.
"Then I, the great wizard, Faaboo, shall bring you to
Justice!" The big man struck what he thought was a heroic pose, but
instead looked foolish in the robe that he was wearing.
A sweat-drop formed on both Copy's and Kitsuan's heads.
"Another bounty hunter?" asked the young girl in a tired
"Looks like it," muttered the young mercenary.
"I almost didn't recognise you with that haircut of yours,"
chuckled the wizard moving towards them. "The description describes
you with long hair. But with your identity revealed, I can now take
you out, in the name of Justice!"
This guy is worse than Amelia! Copy stood
up, reached to pull out his sword, the simple but well crafted weapon that
Master Groning had made, out of its scabbard and was about to attack the
other man when the innkeeper, a really big, really mean-looking woman, shouted
from the doorway into the kitchen. "Hey! Take it outside!
You wreck the place, you're gonna pay for it, you clowns!!!"
The three combatants stopped, looked at the innkeeper,
hung their heads in shame, and then dejectedly walked out of the inn and
into the street.
At least I got to finish my meal, thought Copy
in relief. "Well," he said confidently. "Where were we?"
"We were at the part, where I defeat you and claim the
reward money--in the name of Justice!" announced the huge man.
"You're not, by any chance from Seyroon, are you?" asked
the young man.
"Huh?" The Great Faaboo looked confused. "No.
"Never mind, it's not important."
"Defend yourself!" shouted the wizard.
Kitsuan pulled her dagger out from its sheath. She
stood ready, facing her opponent.
"Just you?" she asked teasingly. "Jeepers!
And I thought this was going to be a real fight."
"Just you wait, little girl," sneered Faaboo. He
looked at her appraisingly. "When I'm done here, I'll show you what
a real man could do."
"And who's the real man that you have in mind?"
The man growled and started to chant a spell. A
sullen glow formed around him. Kit was suddenly afraid.
"Oh, no you don't!" shouted Copy as he charged at the
wizard. He swung his sword towards the bounty hunter's head. Faaboo
ducked, and was startled out of his concentration, he stuttered and the glow
that surrounded him faded away.
"You leave Kitsuan out of this! It's me you want!"
shouted Copy as he swung his sword again.
Faaboo dodged with surprising speed for such a huge man.
He threw something at the young man, which bounced off of his plain black
headband and shattered against the wall of a nearby building. Kitsuan,
who was wisely trying to stay out of the way, saw the remains of a Control
Gem on the ground. Well, what do you know? It DOES work
, she thought.
The wizard scowled as he realised that his main attack
was a failure, and he knew that the young man that he was attacking was faster
with the sword than he was with his chanting. So, he decided to fall
on his back-up plan. He whistled. Copy stopped his attack, confused.
A whole army of thugs came out of the shadows of nearby alleys and doorways.
They surrounded the duo with surprising speed. Kitsuan started to swear
under her breath.
Faaboo gave an ugly laugh. "You didn't want to make
it easy for me, eh?" he asked. "Now lets see how well you fare against
my Army of Justice!" He motioned the goon squad to close in.
"Are you sure that you're not from Seyroon?" asked Copy
again as he defended against the many knifes and swords. His curiosity
was quashed as a knife tore through his sleeve and nicked him.
Kitsuan was getting panicky. In her imagination,
she saw what a bunch of barbarians could do to her young, supple, well-built
body. She turned to her companion. "Copy! There's too many
of them! We can't fight them all! What will we do?"
Without saying anything, the tall young man sheathed his
sword. The young thief's mouth dropped open in astonishment.
She watched as he crossed his hands over his chest. The gang of thugs
stopped, wondering why even an idiot would put his sword away in the middle
of a serious brawl.
"Whatareyadoing?!?" she cried out as she turned
around to face the on-coming thugs again. "Pull your sword back out,
A voice filled with power spoke out from behind her.
A huge gust of wind came up out of nowhere and Kitsuan
felt strong arms slip under her own and pick her up. She almost dropped
her dagger in disbelief as she watched as her feet leave the ground and the
astonished Faaboo and his cronies behind. She shut her eyes for a moment,
believing that she was seeing things. But when she opened them again,
she found that she was still flying high over the city. She swallowed
and struggled in the grasp of the person holding her.
"Easy, Kit," said the voice behind her. "Don't struggle
or you'll make me drop you." The voice was very familiar.
"C-c-copy?" She stopped her struggles.
"Yeah. It's me." Pride filled the young man's
"You're doing this?" asked Kitsuan in a small voice.
"Yeah! Pretty good, huh?"
They were now sailing over the countryside.
"I didn't know you can do this," she said. "How
come you didn't tell me?"
"I didn't know I could. This is the first time I
"You've never done this before...?"
"Nope!" replied Copy cheerfully.
Kitsuan felt sick to her stomach. That lasted only
a moment as she realised that the ground started to come up quickly.
"Copy?" she asked.
After a few moments of panic, Copy tried to slow down
and descend gently onto a nearby hilltop. Unfortunately, the move was
only partially successful. They reached the hill and were only ten
feet above it when the spell finally gave out. Both thief and swordsman
crashed into the ground with a very audible thud. They lay there quietly
on the hilltop for a few moments, catching their breath, while the local
scavengers wondered if they just hit the jackpot. Unfortunately, to
their disappointment, their would be dinners started to stir.
"You HAVE to work on your landings," groaned Kitsuan.
"I will," promised Copy in a pained voice. "But
I never done that before."
There were a few more minutes of silence.
The young thief sat up. "How did you do that?"
"I told you, I don't know." He looked thoughtful.
"I wonder if Lina might know..."
Kitsuan looked towards the setting sun. "You can
ask her when we find her. Meanwhile, it's getting dark and we ought
to set up for the night. This place is as good as any."
"Yeah, I guess you're right."
"And as soon as we can, we have to buy some armour for
you. Those goons were a little too close for comfort and its gonna
be tough for you to be a proper mercenary if you don't look the part...
Not to mention that you may want to keep your skin."
"I guess you're right," he sighed as examined the cut
on his arm.
"But to do that we're gonna have to save money, and not
spend it all on food."
"Kitsuan!!!" wailed Copy. "No fair...!"
Meanwhile, back in town...
Most of the shops had closed for the night, and all of
the hired goons all went home to their wives and children. However,
Faaboo still looked towards the horizon where his quarry had flown off.
He was royally pissed off, and regretted not hiring his army for more than
one day. He shook in rage. No one told him that the guy he was
chasing was able to use magic. But he won't give up. Now he had
a real challenge. He started to cackle in anticipation.
"I'll get you my Copy," he shouted, "and
your little thief too!!!"
Nearby a stray dog howled.
The innkeeper opened a window and shouted. "Shut-up,
you idiot!" Then she threw a washbasin at him. The huge bowl
struck the wizard in the back of the head and he dropped to the street, unconscious.
They were standing in the middle of nowhere, at what seemed
to be a sort of crossroads. The sun was shining overhead and there
was absolutely nothing to stand under.
"Now where do we go?" asked Amelia.
"I have no idea," sighed Lina. "Zel, let's take
another look at that map."
"All right." The chimera opened the map up and everyone
crowded around him. There were moans of dismay as they realised that
they really were in the middle of nowhere. There were towns in four
directions from where they were standing, and every one of them were two
weeks away, if the distances were correct. The last town that travelled
from was two weeks back on the one road, and the other towns on the map were
spaced at least the same distance apart.
"So, which way do we go?" asked Gourry.
"I say that we go west, towards this town here, um, Vyranda,"
"I'd rather go east towards Mompton," said Zelgadis.
"I hear that there's a great beef specialty in Felinda,"
said Gourry, pointing to the northern town.
"I think that we should go back to Sunnyvale," said Amelia,
pointing south, behind them. "We could get more supplies and head off
towards a town that's closer to there."
"I hate backtracking," complained Lina.
Then a voice came out of nowhere...
"Hello, Lina Inverse," it said. A mysterious figure stepped
out of the shadows, which was rather impressive, as there were nothing around
to cast any. He was wearing the clothes of a travelling priest. His
hair was straight and shoulder length and he carried a staff topped with
a well-polished red stone. His face was in what appeared to be a permanent
disarming smile as if he was laughing at the world. He regarded the group
with a cheerful look. "Long time, no see."
"Xelloss." It was not a greeting. Lina did
not want to play any games with the mazouku. Moreover, according to
the faces of Amelia and Zelgadis, they weren't too thrilled to see him either.
Gourry's face was a blank for a moment. Then he smiled at the newcomer.
"Hey, Xelloss. It has been quite a while, hasn't
it?" Gourry beamed, pleased to greet an old acquaintance. However,
the others remained quiet. Xelloss raised an eyebrow as if in question.
"Well now... That's no way to greet an old friend
now, is it?" His face and voice remained ever cheerful.
"Who ever said that you were our friend?!?" shouted Lina.
Xelloss' eyes opened wide for a moment, revealing violet
irises with cat-slit pupils.
"Whatever do you mean?" The eyes closed again quickly.
Amelia pushed her way through to the front of the group.
"You know exactly what we mean, Mr. Xelloss! You
deceived us, then abandoned us to that awful Hellmaster guy. That was
a very bad thing to do. So in the name of justice, I will have to punish
you!" Amelia pointed and aimed her righteous wrath at the false priest.
Before she could charge, she was frozen in place with a restraining spell.
"I'm sorry, Amelia, I'm afraid that this is not a good
time for me to play with you. I have some information that you
may find very interesting."
Lina crossed her arms and looked properly sceptical.
The corner of Xelloss' mouth turned up even further.
"It's information about the man that you are charged to bring back."
"You mean the man called 'Copy'?" asked Zelgadis.
"That's the one." the false priest confirmed.
"What about him?" asked the chimera.
"There's more to him than you think."
"Oh?" asked Lina. "Such as...?"
"Copy is more than just the man's name. It is what
"Huh?" asked Gourry. Lina shoved an elbow into the
"Listen, stupid. Remember that lab where that old
man was making little versions of you and me?"
"Yeah, I think I do..." Gourry scratched his head
"Well, those were 'kopiis' --duplicates of you and me.
Like that Kopii-Rezo. Remember him at least?"
"No, not really."
Everyone, including Xelloss, face faulted and fell to
Lina's anger made her seem to swell to ten times her normal
"That kopii almost killed us!!! How can you NOT
Wiping the sweat-drop aside, Zelgadis asked, "So what
you are saying is that not only is 'Copy' the man's name, it is actually
what he is, right?"
"Bingo." Xelloss smiled even more.
"Okay. I got it." Lina looked thoughtful.
"So this Copy's a kopii. Is that right, Miss Lina?"
"That appears to be the case..." mused Lina. "So,
Xelloss... Who is this 'Copy' a kopii of, anyway?"
"Well," mused the Beastmaster. "I can't tell you."
A red aura glowed around the small sorceress. "
And why not?!?"
"Because, my dear Lina Inverse, that..." Xelloss winked
at her and wagged his finger, "that is a secret."
"AAAAARRRRRGH!!!!!" The scream could
be heard for hundreds of miles. Gourry had to hold Lina back before
she could launch herself into the mazouku. Lina struggled with all
her might. "I'm gonna KILL him!" she shouted.
Zel scratched his head. "But I don't get it.
Why do you want to help us? I'm sure that it isn't in your master's
Xelloss waved his hand. "I know, I know. But
you have to understand... Monsters thrive on chaos, you know.
While most monsters yearn for total destruction and the return to the primal
chaos, I prefer the little bits of chaos that can happen in day to day life
and make it interesting."
"Is that why you keep coming to torment us like this,
Mister Xelloss?" asked Amelia.
"That's it exactly." Xelloss nodded.
"And by the way, you will find your man that way..." the mazoku pointed east.