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A Champion's Life

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He began to read.

He read through about a quarter to a third of the book, and found out many things.

The first Champion's name was Termini. He was a navy blue square who wore a long robe. He also found out that all four of the first champions were the same shapes as the four current ones. Square, triangle, pentagon, circle.

So he assumed that it was the same for all generations of Champions.

He also found out that Spectre's best friend was the second champion, a golden triangle named Stella. He couldn't find out from the book what she wore.

All of this was interesting to Azeon, but it wasn't exactly what he was looking for.

He found no mentions of pink or nightmares in the book.

But then he read the next page.

"So, today, me and Stella went to Floralia. We'd heard something was going on there, and we wanted to check it out. When we got there, we talked to the flower leader. They said that supposedly there was a large group of red flowers picking fights with other, non-red flowers. He gave us a direction and we quickly found the troublemakers."

He stopped there.

"Red flowers...? There's not a blotch of red in all of Paradise!"

He kept reading.

"When we approached them, they didn't seem happy to see us. I didn't wanting to escalate things further than they already were, so I called out to them and asked them if there was a problem. One of them said that the other flowers were treating them like garbage so they were taking a stand against them. They all cheered."

"Well that's... interesting... I guess."

"Stella told them that coming to either of us would've been a better option than taking matters into their own hands, but they just laughed. I got annoyed and warned them that they'd have to stop what they were doing or that we'd have to get involved."

"That was possibly the worst thing I could've done."

Azeon raised an eyebrow.

"They all went berserk. What was originally a street fight ended up escalating into a riot. And to make things worse, a group of twenty ambushed us before we even had a chance to react. They had me completely pinned down. I tried my absolute hardest to escape, but there's no getting back up when there's ten people stacked on top of you."

He had a feeling where this was going.

"I heard Stella shouting at them to stand down, but nothing happened. She shouted that she didn't want to have to fight but that she would if she had to."

The rest of the sentence was indented into the paper, almost like the writer had put a lot of pressure on the paper with their pen.

"The next few minutes were the worst minutes of my life. They attacked her. I could see it out of the corner of my eye. She tried to fight back, but it was just too much."

"They knocked her unconscious, but... they didn't stop.... they didn't stop. They wanted her dead..."

Azeon felt a lump form in his throat.

"and they didn't stop until she was. I watched before my own eyes as she slowly broke into a million pieces."

"This... is beginning to concern me. I don't know if I should keep reading this... but I guess I don't have a choice."

"... You know, there's nothing quite like watching the person you care the most about die slowly and painfully, knowing there's not a single thing you could do about it. It instills such a special feeling in you that you, so special, in fact, that you would, never, ever, ever feel it otherwise: pure. Rage. And something happened. A new source of strength found itself in me, and I effortlessly threw them all off of me. And guess what?"

"And I vowed to kill every single one them. Then we'd be even."

"What the hell...?" Azeon muttered

"And guess what? I did what I said I would. I hunted them all down. I wanted them all gone. Some of them tried to fight, others tried to run, and others tried to hide. But it all failed. In the end, the other Champions came and tried to stop me, first with words. I didn't listen, so they tried to stop me by force. And if they didn't get in my way, I would've gotten all of them, but a child escaped into the forest while I was occupied. 'So be it,' I said. A single flower is insignificant. I'd killed the rest of them, so it didn't matter. I'd never see the colour red again."

Azeon snapped the book shut and put it down.

"Holy. Shit. What the absolute hell was that?"

He shook his head.

"So that's why the book is forbidden. Sweet Criminy! But what does it all mean? There were red flowers? And they were basically all wiped out because a group of them killed a Champion?"

A thought entered into his head, giving him a very bad feeling.

"One red flower lived..."

"... and pink is made with red."

He picked up the book again. He didn't want to, but he had to keep reading.

He picked up back where he left off and began reading with a sigh. He flipped to the next page and started reading.

"A week has passed. Looking back on... well... do I regret my actions? Do I feel like a monster for what I did? Well... yes and no. The idiots who fought us got what they deserved. But they didn't all deserve to die. I was just. So. Angry. I miss Stella. The world feels empty without her."

Azeon felt depressed just reading it.

"And... people look at me in fear now. The other two Champions look at me with disgust and hatred. Like a monster. Honestly, I can't blame them. I'm afraid of myself."

"You should be."

"There's no fixing what happened. No changing the past. This will forever be a part of our history, never to be forgotten, never to be erased. And it didn't even need to happen in the first place."

"Yet it was erased anyway, and I can see why."

With nothing left to see for this day, Azeon flipped the page and kept reading.

He read for hours. He got to the end of the book without anything special happened.

Until...

"I woke up tonight in a blind panic. I didn't even know why at first, there was nothing happening. I took some time to think and realized I had... a nightmare. It was full of... pink. But... why? I've never had a nightmare before this!"

Azeon's heart skipped a beat reading that.

Determined, he kept reading more.

Spectre kept having more and more nightmares, just like Azeon was now.

Unlike, Azeon, though, he never really remembered any of them.

But eventually, he made it to the end of the book. The last entry was... poorly written.

"Today will mark the final entry to this journal, as I will no longer be around to keep updating it. I lay on my death bed as I write this."

"What happened?"

"Today seemed just like any other day. Ironically, I didn't have a nightmare last night, so I thought today was going to be a great day. I couldn't have been more wrong."

Azeon cringed.

"A pink monstrosity attacked Paradise. It spread a pink... disease throughout the land as it went, and it either corrupted or killed everything in it's path in a blind rage. I confronted it, and I thought it couldn't get any more angry, but when it saw me... it was possibly angrier than I was that one day ages ago."

"Is this going where I think it's going...?"

"I asked it why it was attacking Paradise. It roared that I killed everyone it knew and loved, and that nobody ever did anything about it, so it was taking revenge. It then shouted a variety of... horrific threats toward me."

"Yep... it is. This isn't going to end well."

"I asked it if that if I died, if it would stop its assault. Unfortunately, it said that it wouldn't stop until all of Paradise was under its control as a withered pink ruin. So, I had no choice but to fight it. The other Champions joined me in the battle. It was far stronger than we were expecting, it was like it was specifically designed to kill us. Merely touching anything pink was agony. Thankfully, we were almost able to kill it and we purged it of its pink, but... I'm not going to survive the injuries I've sustained from doing so. I've tried healing myself multiple times with a life crystal, but I'm just too weak. The other Champions are too drained to help either, and I doubt they'd want to help me of all people."

There was one sentence left.

"I can feel Death's approach as I write, drawing nearer and nearer. It's time. I will finally face the consequences of my actio--"

The last word was left unfinished.

Azeon closed the book and placed it down.

"A red flower turned into a pink beast that killed at least one Champion. And it's hellbent on destroying Paradise. It's sealed away and powerless, but then why am I getting nightmares now? What does it mean? Is this going to happen again?! Has it attacked multiple times in the past?!"

He shook his head.

"Nonononono, that can't be. If it is somehow still alive, I'll have to track it down and destroy it once and for all. Simple as that. I'm stronger than they were. It'd be easy."

He then took a deep breath.

"Or maybe I can try to talk some sense into it instead. It'd at least be worth trying. But I don't have to worry about that right now. I should just tell the others and try to train Phota again before trying anything. Just in case."

He grinned.

"But the good thing is... my questions are finally answered. No more uncertainties. I have a foolproof plan, I'll either kill it or pacify it."

His grin widened.

"There's absolutely nothing that can go wrong!"