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HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread 
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
Completely caught up and LOVING the Tobuscus levels of Epicosity that are going are right now

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
9.
Isla de la Paz, Mexico. Four hours ago

“Well, my friend, this was most unfortunate,” said the woman at the desk. “And I am sorry that your escort lost his sight. I would like to say that it is so hard to find valuable help these days, but you and Wild did not prove yourselves valuable at all.
“Senora Delasangre—“ tried the terrified voice from the loudspeaker, but the woman – a fit specimen, with long black hair, green eyes and the finest, almost feline facial features of a woman born of the purest Mexican blood – cut the man short with a quiet, cold voice, much like a snake’s.
“Sebastiano, you and Wild failed to carry out the simplest of the tasks, and that has brought much displeasure to my good friend and partner. Plus, you fell for the oldest trick in the handbook. And even worse, you wasted one precious hour before informing me. Please, give me one reason I should spare your useless existence.” She cut off the line on the man’s scream. Then the woman turned her attention to her guest. “They will soon be food for the most mindless and vicious fighters, my dear friend.”
“Thank you, Marcela” came the gruff voice from the seat in front of the desk. “But I’d like better to see that darn cat, Tegan, and that accursed new dog friend of her, Peanut, in the arena, begging for their lives before the King of Champions delivers the finishing blow. After playing with them.” The dog’s muzzle contracted in a grin of ferocious joy.
If the eyes were the mirror to the soul, as the saying went, then Fang was born with one delivered from the depths of the darkest netherworld. Red, blood-red eyes that, combined with a face that never reflected other feelings than rage, always succeeded in scaring the dog’s interlocutors and brought respect to his enemies.
Fang’s right paw, a sophisticated cybernetic prosthetic, contracted in a fist. “And as for that raven, the instrument in their escape, I want to tear it a piece at a time with my own paws. I want them alive, Marcela. Especially Tegan.”
The woman nodded. “I will deliver them to you. The cameras at Circulo de Piedras station show they took a van directed to the community of Camino Azul. I will send a team to recover them discreetly and before night falls, you will have your toys back into your arms.”
Fang didn’t look satisfied –though he never looked satisfied at all. “Why not send a chopper? It would be faster.”
Marcela Delasangre tapped her finger against the desk top. “If we do, it would give away the location of our…friends to their so-called rescuers.”
Fang growled in alarm. “Are they already here?!”
“They are on the way, directed to the heliport of Nantés. They flew under the radar, and they must have repainted it, so even our friends in high places weren’t aware of their presence, but eventually they had to relay their flight plan to air traffic control. This means they will proceed on bus from there to Isla de la Paz. And it also means they are unaware that their quarry is not here.”
Fang got off the chair. “In this case, I will take lead of the retrieval operation. That meddling cat is mine. You will take care of our special guests, senora Delasangre. What do you make of it?”
The woman nodded. “Sounds reasonable. But remember,” she added with the first display of warning in her voice. And Fang, for how strong-headed and ruthless might be, knew better than disobey when she was like that. “You cause harm to anyone in Camino Azul, and the Delasangre Family will use all of their resources to hunt you down and feed you to the arena.”

The desert route between Circulo de Piedras and Camino Azul. Now.

There was just one element that Marcela Delasangre hadn’t taken into consideration –and not because of laziness, or out of underestimation of her foes.
That element was the intervention of an otherworldly creature who could pinpoint Peanut’s and Tegan’s location and inform their friends of the search & rescue team hours before.
An information that would prove crucial in the events to follow. Information that, for now, wasn’t of much use to Bravo Team –composed of the human Kevin Fitzgerald Marsh (formerly USSOCOM) and his partner the Tibetan Mastiff Colombina, the German Sheperd MWD Duke Walters and his partner and mate, the jackal Zara, and Terrace High’s security dog the Weimaraner Sigmund Follett.
And Peanut’s mate and wife, the cat Grape Jelly Sandwich.
A cat who was looking at the desert expanse as if she wanted to cover it with one leap, just to be with her sweet dog and forget this horrible situation.
But they had been blessed already, the night before. She had hope. She could look at that expanse and know she’d be in his arms soon.
Right now, she was praying that her friend Tegan would be fine…
“Recapitulation,” Zara was saying to the secure satellite phone, “Somehow, perhaps with the help of the raven, Peanut and Tegan succeeded in escaping. Possibly, the dog whose blood I found managed to nip at Tegan. Her blood track shows that the loss is quite minimal. Evidence also reveals the dog was deeply scratched by Tegan.
“Peanut and Tegan then ran toward a van and jumped aboard. The van’s tracks showed no sign of acceleration or braking.”
A crackle came from the device, then followed Budweiser’s voice. “That was an excellent job, Zara. Proceed at full speed, and remember: you can send for help, since you are after the primary targets.”
Kevin, sitting next to the driver, shook his head reflexively. He was consulting the satellite imagery through his tablet. Camino Azul, as the name suggested, had been erected as a Mayan city centuries ago along the banks of a river. Now it was a big village that lived off the land’s fruits and the provisions they got from the Circulo de Piedras railway station. And there was something else, unfortunately “Thank you, Alpha One, we may be sorely needing it: Camino Azul is the birthplace of the Delasangre family.”
Bud snarled. “Say again, Bravo One?”
“Confirm. I may add that, though they don’t exactly ‘rule’ the place, there is a very strong bond between that family and the locals. It will be like stepping into a Sicilian village. We may have a hard time only to get info from the locals.”
A crackling pause, then, “I see. Looks like the gods are throwing all they can at us. Proceed and do everything in your power to carry out your mission.”
The human smirked. “Nothing less from me, Alpha One.”
“How long till you reach destination?”
“One hour, tops.”
---
“Got it. Radio Silence from you until you have the targets secured. Over.”
“Bravo One, roger and over.”
Bud turned off the phone. He turned to his part of the team: The GSD Sergeant Ralph, Fido, the Doberman Kevin, Terrace High’s security dog Hannibal, LCG’s Security team Natasha Alekseeva and her husky Diego. “Okay, gang, you know what to do: from now on this is Operation Pentito for us. Under Psycho’s lead, we will find the King of Champions of the local Pet Fight Club circuit, apprehend the King of Champions and get him or her to the helicopter. We need the KoC alive for all information he/she can give us to take down Isla de la Paz’s PFC.
“I won’t ask you if you got any questions for two good reasons: The first is that I trust you to understand what we’re getting into and that I know you will do your best and no less. The second is that I got a question.” He turned and addressed a female, golden-furred Pomeranian who, definitely, did not look as she could be part of a team entirely composed of highly trained dogs.
In fact, Bud was…intrigued more than upset for that surreal intrusion. “Tarot, may I know what are you doing here?”
Tarot, who was sitting on a seat in the fake touristic bus, as this proceeded along the streets of the city, nodded. “I am here to assist you.”
Bud facepawlmed. “If this is a joke, girl, I am not laughing.”
“I am not joking. That would be silly.”
Peanut’s biological father felt the urge to rip someone’s throat. “Tarot, I know you used to be Peanut’s girlfriend, and that is why I’ll forgive your sneaking in into this party, but right now you’re a darned liability, not—“
She interrupted him…by speaking to Hannibal. “I think it is time you told them.”
Bud shut up with an audible snap of his jaw. He too turned to the black-furred Alsatian. “Tell us what, Psycho?”
Hannibal blinked. “Ah, it’s just a legend, nothing more, really…” Then he felt Fido’s paw over his shoulder.
Babylon Garden’s police dog was shaking his head. “Considering what I saw Sabrina and Tarot do, I think that certain legends have more flesh and blood than you think.”
Hannibal sighed, shook his head. “It’s about the King of Champion’s ‘bodyguard’. As I told you already, to be the KoC a dog must be really strong and mean. The PFC rules at Isla de la Paz reflect a tournament: a dog must climb up this bloody ladder, fight after fight, until they meet the King, If the King wins the other dies, and if it goes the other way around they get a new King.
“Every King of Champions is a very valuable dog, millions are spent in bets for a single fight. He is treated like a king, but many want him dead to make sure their own dog gets to the top. And so, the King is assigned a bodyguard, or rather, two.
“One is human and instructed to shoot on sight at the first sign of foul play, the other…well, they call him/her the Shadow King. This creature is not human, and they say it consorts with dark magic to protect the King. For sure, no one ever succeeded in hurting a King, not even the King himself. The only place where a King is allowed to die is in the arena. But as I said, it’s a legend. It’s obvious the Delasangre will go any length to make sure their best income source is protected and healthy.”
“But you don’t believe so,” Fido said to Tarot.
She nodded. “The Shadow King is out there, I can feel its presence. It is well blended, I can’t even discern the species for now.”
Bud was at a loss, here: he had never dealt with supernatural, and the most ‘super’ thing he had ever known about was the dolphins’ telepathy… But now, simply, there was no time to start a debate. It was standing here and argue until they got a sore throat, or to act as planned. “Tarot, what are your intentions?”
“Let me deal with the Shadow King. I will not come in your way. And don’t worry for me, I can cope with the situation, while you will be having other problems to deal with.”
That was the last thing Budweiser wanted to hear. If something happened to her, Peanut would be quite upset, Grape or no—
The bus came to a brusque halt. Luckily, everyone was sitting and with the belts on, or that would have caused a whole list of traumas.
“What the—“ Bud said, unsnapping his own safety belt. “Mister, what’s the idea. I thought we were going to the—“ Then he saw through the doors. “Frick!” And he understood what that female had meant a moment before.

The bus had stopped because the road had been blocked by two police vehicles and a van.
And there were at least a dozen armed men with their weapons aimed at the bus.

Kevin leant over to look through the window. “Ah, boss? My impression or our plans have a bit gone down the drain?”
Bud sighed. “I hate the baddies with a brain.”
And, of course, when he looked in the direction of Tarot, his eyes met only an empty seat…

Camino Azul, Mexico. Two hours ago.

The van stopped in front of the group of scattered stone houses, standing shadows of the bygone glory of a proud civilization.
The woman at the driver seat turned off the engine. “Well,” she said to nobody in particular, “at least, this time it was an interesting trip. You are surely one who knows good stories, raven.”
Nevermore bowed. “Thank you, though I am only the recipient of those stories that came from my ancestors’ wisdom, senora.”
The woman nodded. She opened the door. “I think we should take care of our friends, now. They looked so scared, the poor creatures.”
“You can bet on it,” Never muttered, while hopping on her shoulder. “Thank you for your assistance, we owe you our lives.”
The woman was young, no more than 30, her face framed by locks of her long auburn eyes. Her eyes were two smiling black obsidian pearls. “Oh, don’t thank me: I believe in omens, you see, and if Raven sent me a messenger to help a creature in distress, I think it is better to do His bidding rather than turning my back and see what tricks the Trickster could play on me.”
Never chuckled. “Heh, didn’t think someone still followed the old beliefs.”
The woman opened the trunk door. “Our family never liked the religion imposed to our ancestors centuries ago. To be honest, I don’t think my sister believes in any religion at all… Oh, there you are. Come on, you are safe now. No one will do you harm, here.” She showed a warm smile to her unexpected guest, a blue-eyed mixed-breed dog and a female Maine Coon. She had a caked scarlet stain over her arm, but otherwise she looked physically fine.
“She’s telling the truth, guys,” Never said. “Or, at least, right now we need a place where to stay, eat and drink, or this trip home will be a very short one.”
Hesitantly, Peanut held out his paw to let himself helped down the truck. Tegan imitated him a moment later, then turned and looked at the houses she couldn’t recognize –at least, she hoped, she was far enough from the Fanged Teeth. She hoped…
“Thank you lady,” Peanut said. He did feel weak, and he was quite hot, he wasn’t definitely used to this climate. Never was right, they really needed food and water, and soon. “I am Peanut and this is my friend Tegan.”
The woman ruffled his head fur with a gentle touch. “Very pleased, Peanut and Tegan. I am Estrella Delasangre.”
Tegan was too tired even to scream in frustration, for she had recognized the name.
She didn’t dare to think it: Could things get even worse?!

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
Good update but...

We still don't know who the KoC is!! Why must you torture us who want to know!?

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Tue Apr 10, 2012 10:49 am
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
well we have some mages and some wariors on each side of the team. I am hoping for some good old fashioned final fantasy fighting now, just without the ATB gauge. Go on Tarot summon spirit dragon!

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Tue Apr 10, 2012 11:10 am
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
I knew your story and light's were related, but not this way, though is not that a big surprise.
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Tue Apr 10, 2012 12:01 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
Wolfy wrote:
well we have some mages and some wariors on each side of the team. I am hoping for some good old fashioned final fantasy fighting now, just without the ATB gauge. Go on Tarot summon spirit dragon!

No no we definitely want the ATB gauge, also limit breaks.

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
@light: LoL
________

EvanAierkan wrote:
Wolfy wrote:
well we have some mages and some wariors on each side of the team. I am hoping for some good old fashioned final fantasy fighting now, just without the ATB gauge. Go on Tarot summon spirit dragon!

No no we definitely want the ATB gauge, also limit breaks.


I feel like Peanut now, i dont know what are you talking about, but it sounds Awesome!

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Tue Apr 10, 2012 12:58 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
legendario13 wrote:
@light: LoL
________

EvanAierkan wrote:
Wolfy wrote:
well we have some mages and some wariors on each side of the team. I am hoping for some good old fashioned final fantasy fighting now, just without the ATB gauge. Go on Tarot summon spirit dragon!

No no we definitely want the ATB gauge, also limit breaks.


I feel like Peanut now, i dont know what are you talking about, but it sounds Awesome!

I lol'd too.
Also a good summon for the Dragon is Bahamut Zero from FFVII.
Great update, Valerio.

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
angelusbr wrote:
Also a good summon for the Dragon is Bahamut Zero from FFVII.
Great...now I feel like playing that game again.

legendario13 wrote:
I knew your story and light's were related, but not this way, though is not that a big surprise.
Thanks, Legendario. ;3 We try to keep it within continuity.

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Tue Apr 10, 2012 2:07 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
ARGH!!! I WANNA KNOW WHO WON!!! :cry:

great update as always, but hurry up with the next one please. I'm impatient.

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Tue Apr 10, 2012 2:29 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
I WANNA SEE SOCKS STRANGLE PEOPLE IN THEIR SLE~

I mean ~ see everyone's reaction on who won as well X3 at least you win on making us impatient as well!

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It's called suspense

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
Suspense is always good. Keeps us all reading and I love it!

Great update as always. I am guessing this is a good sister, bad sister deal here?

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
10.
Camino Azul, Mexico

“It is not poisoned, girl, honest.”
Her arms crossed at her chest, Tegan kept looking with stoic scorn at the dish of maize, meat and a thick reddish sauce, served with a glass of milk. She moved her eyes from the food to the old woman who had just talked. At those words, she moved her head with a scoff.
Her stomach growled with hunger –after all, it had been almost twenty-four hours since she and Peanut had been kidnapped, and they hadn’t eaten a bit or drank a drop of water. Plus, the stress and the energies she had used in their escape from the Circulo de Piedras railway station had further increased her hunger and thirst, and the village they were in stood in a desert.
Could it get worse? Of course, since fate seemed to have decided to give them its worst! As if living a tranquil and happy life at Terrace High must be wrong somehow in the eyes of whoever lived Up There!
The old, nice woman was the mother of Estrella Delasangre, the kingpin family of Mexico’s most infamous and largest Pet Fight Club’s circuit! The very same circuit she and Peanut were supposed to be smuggled to!
Yes, of course the food and milk weren’t poisoned, she could believe that (no sarcasm intended!): Fang, head of the Fanged Teeth Gang, the smugglers of innocent pets for the arena’s meatgrinder, wanted her alive for spoiling his plans years before! Sleepy pills, anyone?
But you won’t get me, Fang! Your henchgals will have to beat me into sleep! Peanut and I will run away from this place as soon as—
Then she was distracted by the sound of chewing and drinking, as if a wolf was rudely eating for dear life…
“You should really try it, Teggy! It’s uberdelicious!” Peanut said, his muzzle dirty with crumbs, sauce and milk. He looked sated and happy. He was wagging.
“PEANUT!” Tegan shouted angrily.
“What?” he said, without stopping the feast. The dish was a wide one, just like hers, yet he finished it in record time. He then used his paws to scoop up what was on his muzzle and lap it. He then burped. And yawned, stretching happily. “Mmm, that was good! Uh, I feel so tired.”
“Because that stuff was drugged you dolt!” she said.
“Or because you two are exhausted,” the raven said from a perch he was sharing with a pink-feathered parrot. “Lady, at this point what harm could it do to you to eat? If you’re convinced you can’t escape, just go on a full stomach. Plus, I can tell you already the food is not drugged.”
“Oh, and you used some super-duper power, I guess?”
The raven showed a sly grin. “I tasted it.”
Tegan’s head slumped forward. “I hate you.”
Never seemed to think about that, rubbing his beak with a wing. “Seems that I have this effect on cats.”
Tegan started eating. She tried to be polite at first, just nibbling, but as soon as the taste got to her buds, she started wolfing it all down like she had been a stray on a diet of pizza boxes leftovers. She was done even faster than Peanut! Then she expressed her satisfaction with a loud belch. “Thank you, ma’am!” She added, blushing.
The old woman chuckled as she took the dishes and the glasses to put them on a tray. “You’re welcome little one. It’s such a shame that such nice creatures should be smuggled here for the Pet Fight Club.”
“So you do know about your daughter’s activity,” Tegan said, her instinct again on full alarm mode.
Estrella came at that moment. “We all do, Tegan. It’s with that, that eventually she could turn a dying village into this oasis and feed us all. I don’t like it, no one likes it, but the alternative would be poverty, famine, death. And please, don’t start an argument: many have tried, from the men of law to the activists, men of church, simple volunteers… Every one of them carried a good argument or a valid reason, but they didn’t change our mind and so won’t you. This is our land and we will live in it, whatever the costs. Just like other people will cultivate drugs to make a living… And should something happen, something that can allow us to stay here and live by any other mean, we will gladly welcome it.
“In the meantime, we can hide other animals like you from my sister’s greedy eyes. If you managed to escape her clutches, then you’re meant to live, not to end up in an arena. And we will help you. We have no pets here, except for those that are species-unfit for the arena, just to avoid them being carried into Isla de la Paz, so you will be sure to be safe here, the whole village will protect you.”
It was at that point – or, perhaps, it was thanks to a full stomach and the lucidity that came with that – that Tegan noticed two things.
Seen from the outside, the village of Camino Azul might look old, but on the inside it was…modern. The place she lived in was furnished with modern household appliances, the furniture itself would replicate an ancient style, but everything almost smelled brand new…
Estrella nodded. “The Delasangre family makes sure everyone at Camino Azul benefits of the same lifestyle. Marcela provides us with everything. Her trains make sure of that.”
“Then why the old van?” Never asked. “You could easily have your own errand-boy, na?”
Estrella chuckled. “Oh, I do. I just wanted to make sure to get this gift from my sister. As for the van, well, it’s something Marcela wants done this way. We have a whole fleet of them. Old on the outside, shiny powerful engines inside.”
“Deceit at its finest as lifestyle,” Never said. “Raven would be pleased.”
Tegan sighed. “Look, ma’am, it’s not that Peanut and I are not grateful. You people seriously creep me out, it’s like the anti-Babylon Gardens here, but we still owe you our lives. Can’t you just point our way back to the US and perhaps give us a ride as far as possi—“ she was interrupted by the sound of a claxon. A powerful one!
Both pets turned their heads toward the window. Peanut snarled.
The pink-feathered parrot said, “It’s them! Quick, follow me to the hideout!” And she took off, immediately followed by the others. Tegan and Peanut had the distinct impression this wasn’t the right time to stop and ask questions.

The column was made of six cars. Six light armored vehicles, each one capable of carrying up to eight full-armed men.
Or more, if men were replaced with animals.
The engines were turned off one after the other. Then, as Estrella and her mother stepped out of their house, the front LAV’s door opened.
Fang got off his ride. “Soo good to see you, Estrella. Ma’am,” he added with genuine deference to the older woman, who was regarding him with a cold stare that made it clear where Marcela had caught hers from.
“Speak your business, Fang,” the old woman said.
I want to rip your throat with this artificial hand, feed on your precious daughter and then burn this stupid village down to its foundation, to make sure to find Tegan and make her SUFFER before sending her remains to Elliot! The dog’s eyes sparkled with those thoughts, but his mouth said another thing. “Ma’am, I am here to retrieve two animals for the arena, on behalf of your daughter Marcela. I assure you, I am only doing her bidding. They escaped from Circulo de Piedras and took your daughter’s van without her noticing. I just ask you permission to do the searching, without causing harm or damage. I promise I won’t take long.” He bowed to emphasize.
The woman stared at him for a full minute. She could see through this dog’s lies, she knew exactly what to expect from him –it was bad enough that her daughter had to cause great pain to make money, but that she consorted with this…monster made her feel sick. This Fang was more like the reincarnation of the most cruel of humans, no animal could be such a sadist…
But once again, as those thoughts had come they passed. She knew, but the truth was, she had never had proof to show to the people who had come to speak to her family. What happened in Isla de la Paz remained in Isla de la Paz. Prosecutors couldn’t put on trial a businesswoman on the base of chit-chats.
The day the Delasangre family would pay for their crimes would come. For now, the old woman could only nod and move aside. “Do what you have to do and be quick as you promise.”
Fang nodded and motioned his dogs to start searching, with the humans covering the area for troubles Fang hoped the locals would give.
And, who knew? Perhaps he could go as far as finish this mission by overtaking the whole business.
Marcela’s head would make such a nice trophy in his new office…
---
Unlike movies used to depict, military satellite imagery wasn’t something civilians had access to, since even the most democratic United States of America prided in their security systems.
Unfortunately for Fang, and above all unbeknownst to him, Raimund Radulph Gottschalk could grant said kind of access to those who asked him, especially if he believed it would serve for a good cause.
And the rescue of Peanut and Tegan was good enough a reason.
The only problem was that, again unlike movies used to depict, satellites weren’t a handy resource one could move around at the touch of a finger. There were protocols to follow, instructions to give.
Time to wait.
Kevin Fitzgerald Marsh knew it all too well. Even when he used to work for the top brass he must wait frustrating periods of time before he and his men could get the imagery of a given target. Minutes could stretch into hours in one’s mind, when you knew you could make a difference and hold your horses at the same time…
Luckily, he thought again, Mexico was on the list of countries under special surveillance since the ‘war on terror’ had started. Terrorists mixing into the illegal immigrants flux had gained an extra eye in the sky. Gottschalk must be more influential than the former USSOCOM Lieutenant imagined if he could use it for a private mission—“Got it!”
Everyone in the armored military car startled –especially Grape, who really needed good news right now. And knowing where to find Peanut, see the place where he was maybe being kept prisoner, or perhaps just hiding while waiting for her, was like a balm in the open wound of this stressful search…
Then, in the moment the lavender-furred cat stretched over the man’s shoulder to see the tablet, she also saw what made him say “Dang it!”. And her heart fell.
The screen showed a fleet of armored cars. Though they didn’t look as tough as the one Kevin, Grape and their teammates were sitting in, there were enough of them to give trouble to them.
“Komatsu LAV,” the man said. “Belongs to JGSDF, Japan’s military forces. Six of them. 20 dogs, 10 paramilitary human units. Either Marcela Delasangre was tipped off about us or she expects us to be here sooner or later. Either way, we can’t barge in.”
The driver didn’t stop pushing their vehicle. “What are the options them, Lieutenant?”
The man examined the image on the tablet, zooming here and there in search of a good point from where to— “Hold it.”
“Sir?”
“Not you.” Zoom again. Yes… “They are searching house by house. See, Grape?”
The cat nodded, looking at the screen as if she could pass through it if she wanted to. Her whiskers trembled, but she kept her cool. Kevin really admired her, if it was his Felix instead of Peanut, he’d go in there armed like Terminator and determined like Chuck Norris, loaded to unleash hell!
Kevin nodded. “The locals haven’t turned Peanut and Tegan to them. That, or they have hidden out really good. It means we have a chance if we can play our cards the proper way. Jack!” he said to the driver.
“Yes, Sir?”
“Full speed. Use those new prototype afterburners, don’t worry to run out of gas or to break the engine, we’ll be airborne after this stunt. Detour 5-10-8. Cross the river and then go for the village’s opposite side. With a little luck, and God knows we deserve some, they won’t be expecting us so soon.”
“Yes sir! Full speed, route 5-10-8. Hold to your seats. Afterburners in 3…2…1…Ignition!”
There was no visible blast, no flames burning behind the all-terrain vehicle. Simply, the engine, its noise covered by the insulation, started running at a speed no other like-class vehicles possessed. The exhausts were recycled and cooled inside the vehicle, so that it appeared invisible to IR scanners.
The car moved now at 220 Km/h, toward the battle…
---
Isla de la Paz

“Well, there is one good thing about this predicament,” Kevin said.
The Doberman, his old teammates from the K9U – Fido and Ralph – Diego, Budweiser and Hannibal, were prisoner in a single cell with one armored door, no windows, and steel walls with a tall ceiling from which hang a camera well out of reach. They sat on the cold steel pavement. There was one toilet, no benches or any removable parts. And working on tricks like feigning being sick wasn’t going to get the attention of a worried staff. In this place, sick dogs were cured, best of cases, with a quick death.
“And what would that be?” the German Shepherd asked.
“They didn’t bind and gag us!”
Collective groan. Then Diego threw the other dog a glance that could incinerate rocks. “My partner has just been taken away, perhaps to die first. We are going to be thrown one by one in the arena and you have the guts to joke about it?!”
“They won’t kill her,” Hannibal said, his eyes fixed on the door. “Not until your turn to go comes. Perhaps, they will even keep you for last, to make sure she sees what happens to us all in the meantime. They did it once to an owner who had risked everything to come here and save his dogs.”
“Was that supposed to make me feel better?” the Husky asked with a growl.
Hannibal’s voice kept that flat, monotone intonation. “It’s supposed to make me remember that I won’t go without a fight. They’ll pay dearly for all of this, and for that human and his kids.”
<How nice of you,> said a voice. Inside his –no, inside all of their minds.
The dogs looked around, instinctively searching for the source of that sound. Everyone except Fido, who was rolling his eyes as if trying to see inside his own mind. “Are you the Shadow King?”
<Why, yes, dear Fido Byron. And I must say, you’re the first one I ever met who has such a well-shielded mind.>
“I have been taught by a good friend.”
<Yes, I can imagine it. The same friend who is trying to elude my attention. Someone the others know as…Tarot.>
Of course, Fido wasn’t shaken by that revelation. The others weren’t nearly as psych-trained like he was. At least, this Shadow King wasn’t able to probe his mind about Sabrina, and neither he/she seemed interested in investigating further about her existence.
<I will offer you a deal, Fido,> the voice said, in a seductive tone. Just like poison laced with honey. Fido knew better than lowering his defenses. He couldn’t be grateful enough to Sabrina for the time and patience she had dedicated to teach him to defend his mind. Perhaps she had foreseen this moment, but I’ll kiss her in gratitude all the same! Even if she didn’t tell me!
“And what would that be?”
<Tell me where she is, and you and your friends get to live. Mistress will listen to me. She always does.>
“I’d rather trust a politician about taxes, thank you.”
<Your death, boy. But I promise I will keep you alive until you change idea. It’s been some time since I could exercise with such a strong mind. Hasta la vista.> Then the voice was gone. Fido had no doubt the Shadow King was busy extracting bits of information from the others. He just hoped Tarot was still there, defending all sensible information, or this mission would turn a total fail—
The door opened. A blinding light came from it, dazzling the dogs.
The click of weapons being readied. A voice from the human silhouette against the door, commanding, “You, Doberman! Come out. Walk slowly or we shoot. Now.”
Kevin stood up and did as he was told. The odds were too unfavorable to try a breakout. Not without dead and wounded, and then only to move in a city where everyone was ready to sell you back to Delasangre.
Kevin walked out, and the door closed.

A leash and a very tight collar were attached to Kevin’s neck. He was led through a narrow corridor. Even if he tried to make a run for it, he’d a perfect target for the gunfire, no maneuver room
“We’re going to hold a special event, just for you bunch,” said the man holding the leash. “Our customers went almost hysterical with joy when we told them there would be a series of fights to elect the new King of Champions. Money is already pouring in.
“Of course, you have no chances. One by one, the King will dispose of you quickly. The bets are on how much he will take to be done.”
“And you chose me first because I’m the strongest? To get rid of the hardest obstacle to your fun?” Kevin asked, half-jokingly.
The man chuckled. “No. because you’re the softer.”
“Aw. That’s mean.”
“Heh, you may look tough, but I know real fighting dogs. The Alsatian and the Husky got it in their eyes, they will be the last, to make sure the public’s interest is spiked up at the last moment. The two mutts…they look related, perhaps we will send them in together to offer a nice variant. As for the GSD, he too got a streak in it, I won’t underestimate it. But you? You are just a bunch of muscles, well groomed and good to tackle.”
Kevin wagged his stubby tail. “Thank you! That’s my specialty!”
They were approaching the end of the corridor, marked by yet another steel door. “Hmph, we’ll see how long will that smile last, once you are in the arena.
The door opened. Another flash of light welcomed Kevin’s eyes, while his ears were assaulted by a collective roar.
The Doberman stepped into the arena. “Tarot,” he whispered. “Whatever this Plan B of yours is, please tell me you weren’t lying when you said it would work.”
---
The door to the office of Marcela Delasangre opened, and a gold-furred Pomeranian female walked in. “It will work, Kevin, I am sorry for not telling you everything, but the Shadow King must not know until the right moment comes.” She closed the door.
“How nice of you to come,” said a figure from the shadows, behind Tarot. Green slit eyes glowed in the dark spot. “But please, let us relax and have a nice chat about this ‘Plan B’, Tarot. Or I could extract that information and destroy your mind. Pick one.”

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
I am getting extremely happy.
Of the submitted Shadow Kings, mine is the one with the glowing green eyes.
Of course, EvanAierkan didn't include eye color, at least not in the appearance and I didn't read the rest of it, so it could be him, but my characters whole thing was "they can only see the green glowing eyes."
I hope I'm right. but if I'm not, I'll get over it because this fic will be awesome no matter what.

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
Let's put it this way: if I wanted to make it clear in this update, i would've also introduced the KoC by now...
Yes, I am a jerk. 8-)

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
I know, but at least this eliminated one (since Jeff's character doesn't even have eyes) if not two (since Gamecobra's had grey eyes, but could possibly have the whole eye color change because of magic thing) of my competitors. So at least now I have a 50/50 shot since it's between me and Evan

I is happy face

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
I'm sure so far that this might be the entry for Bruja from the look of it. And yup, Socks had Grey eyes. Whether regular magic could alter that in this universe is up to interpertation, but i doubt so far it's Socks.

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
RandomGeekNamedBrent wrote:
Of course, EvanAierkan didn't include eye color

Whoops, seems like I forgot all about that.
Fido Byron wrote:
“I’d rather trust a politician about taxes, thank you.”

No Fido, never trust a politician!

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
valerio wrote:
Let's put it this way: if I wanted to make it clear in this update, i would've also introduced the KoC by now...
Yes, I am a jerk. 8-)

oh, you! You know how to tease us!

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
Why can't you just let us know already?!
I'm dieing to find out! (Even if I know I didn't win at this point)

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
11.
The Arena of the Champion, Isla de la Paz, Mexico

Kevin was a good dog. A Doberman who had the luck of being adopted by a nice family and got to live in a nice community such as Babylon Gardens. His had been a life rich with many puppy things, back when he was growing up, but above them all only one thought would dominate his young mind.
He would become a cop. He would become the strongest, toughest dog and save people, be a hero and make the baddies tremble. For every story about a kidnapped pet or an abuse, his determination would grow stronger and stronger.
Despite Kevin not being exactly the smartest cookie of his litter, he managed to be admitted at the Hunter’s Academy and train and shape up to be the (vain) exemplar that now was facing his direst challenge.
The Doberman’s first reaction at this new environment had been fear, but soon he had put that away in favor of another emotion.
Disgust.
Wherever he moved his eyes, he saw humans. Women and men and even boys, all cheering madly, shouting like – at first sight – the spectators of a football game would.
But this was no game, and the heart of these people was not filled with the joy for being just supporters on a cheerful occasion.
And Kevin was no hero, here. Unless he won.
This was the Arena, and Kevin was supposed to fight for his life. He could get away on his legs, alive, or dead. There was no hospital for the loser, no loving care, just being fed to other mindless brutes raised to fight again and again until they met someone else stronger than them.
And these humans were here to see Kevin succeed and kill the defending Champion –one who had all the motivation to stay such – or die in favor of their hero. Either way, they’d get their bloody fun.
Disgusting.
Kevin wasn’t afraid. Quite the contrary, he felt challenged, excited at a primal level. He never had the occasion to unleash his wildest self, back at Babylon Gardens, but seeing all these people, member of the species he respected and cared for all ready to see innocents die for fun and money discouraged a part of him. He understood better how could monsters such as the Whitemans exist. And he pitied the poor ‘monster dogs’ that had been raised to be turned meat for this ‘sport’.
He could smell the stink of evil at work here. And he returned the crowd’s enthusiasm with the cold glare of his ruby-red eyes as he advanced toward the center of the arena.
A loudspeaker came to life, and as if by magic the crowd fell silent.
“Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for participating so numerous on such a short notice,” said a female voice.
Kevin’s eyes flickered in the direction of the source –of course it would be her, speaking from her VIP stand.
Marcela Delasangre, organizer, criminal ringleader, kingpin of this Pet Fight Club circuit, monster! And, just as Hannibal had said before, by her side would sit Natasha Alekseeva, who had been brought there to assist to the death of her canine companions until she’d witness the end of the one she loved most, Diego. Kevin didn’t see armed guards nearby the two women, but he was sure there were snipers in case of foul play…
“Today, I decided to treat you with a specialty only the Delasangre family could bring to you: not one fight of our King of Champions, but a whole series of fights, one after the others, to test his strength in the direst conditions, to see him triumph against all odds, to make your bets worth every single penny!” The crowd erupted. Kevin clenched his fists, wanting to strangle each one of them. Money! Countless lives were lost here on this sand, just to feed a bloody money machine!
“But I won’t keep you waiting any longer, my friends. You have already met Kevin, the challenger,” boos and hisses and cheers greeted the announcements. It was only right, since those who had bet on him could make big money. And Kevin had to win not only for himself, but for his friends. Fido, Ralph, Hannibal, Diego, Budweiser… They counted on him or they’d be next.
There was something else he had to remember, but he couldn’t. His brain was filled with racing blood, his reason was being clouded by fighting instinct. Adrenaline was running powerful. His chest heaved. Kevin licked his lips as if savoring the imminent fight.
“Now it’s time for you to greet the King of Champions! DARIUS!”
The steel door at the other side of the arena opened, and out came a male American Akita. The arena exploded in yet another deafening roar.
If Kevin could have any doubt about how a Champion became a King, seeing that dog dispelled it. The brown/silvery coat was covered in scars that spoke volumes about his fighting skills and his determination. A 1 tag hung from his collar, blue like the bandana Darius wore around his head.
Another ‘medal’ to his value was the black patch that covered his right eye, while the other shone with a cold, golden hue. His posture as he walked spoke of total confidence. He was strong, he was the best, he would fight or die and he knew it. That was one dog that had danced with death and led the dances.
This time, Kevin felt the urge to submit to him, to roll on his back and show his vulnerability, yet he managed to fight it back. His muscles tensed. He snarled, assuming a fighting stance.
“Cute puppy,” Darius said, grinning…and then he dashed! Not a warning, not a ‘go’ from the cruel ringmaster. Just the first attack. Kevin had never seen somebody move so fast, and he had trained with the best! Before he could realize it, he was down and gasping for air. His ribs hurt bad.
But the Doberman didn’t have time to elaborate. Darius had jumped and was almost all over him, his mouth snarling for the killing bite!
---
Offices of Marcela Delasangre

The figure emerged from the shadows, a black-and-white furred shape that at a first glance could have passed for any common house cat. His only remarkable feature was a brown spot over his right eye and some hint of brown on his chest.
Hardly someone who deserved the title of Shadow King, or ‘the magician’.
The bodyguard of the King of Champions. “Time’s up, Tarot. You will speak on your own mind or I’ll take what I want from it, together with your sanity, as promised.”
The female Pomeranian turned. “A threat will not surely convince me, just as any threat from my part will not convince you. Riley.”
The cat chuckled. “Ooh, the intruder knows my real name. Woe me… But, you know, sometimes I like to hear it from someone else’s lips. Being called ‘Riddle’ all the time is annoying at times. Oh, and congratulations for your talent, but I expected no less.”
The two figures just stood there, facing each other.
“We don’t have to do it the hard way,” Tarot said, her eyes glowing green.
A same light lit up in the cat’s eyes. “Nice trick. Wanna see something better?” At a snap of his fingers, Tarot…burst out in an explosion of multicolored lights!
---
Kevin rolled away, and his opponent bit sand. The Doberman wasn’t so stupid as to think that would stop him. In fact, he just made it to stand up before those terrible teeth snapped at the space occupied a moment before by his flank!
Panting, flexing their fists, moving in a slow circle, the dogs examined each other, oblivious to the crowd.
“That was fast, puppy,” Darius said. “I am impressed, your ribs should be broken by now. Good, I want this to last. The others were so…slow. But very fast to die.”
While Darius talked, Kevin stepped away, bit by bit, until he was sure he was at the right distance. “Yeah, and you know what else I am good at?”
“Impress me.”
Kevin put all his might in this technique, as he started running like he had never before. He counted on Darius expecting his attack, of course, but not that it would come swift and stronger than he thought.
TACKLE! And it went exactly as planned! Darius let out a strangled sound as he was grabbed and propelled backward like a broken doll.
Kevin was often scolded for tackling other dogs (and sometimes people) for the fun of it. And he was the only dog in the Gardens who knew a ‘tackle’ variation of many games they played… But there was one thing he had always made sure of: never use his tackles to seriously harm someone unless needed. Not even Joel was really tackled down, for fear of a lawsuit.
Because that one special technique Budweiser had taught Kevin involved a combination of strength and pressure at the spinal nerves with all his strength –a technique supposed to be used with deranged animals such as wolves or cougars.
A technique that made Darius’ lower body feel as if it had turned jelly and, at the same time, transmit a burst of terrible pain all along the upper half! The Akita didn’t even have the strength to cry out. He just made this comic face as he was pushed down facefirst in the sand.
“We don’t have to do this!” Kevin snarled in his ear, while pressing him down. “Listen! I am a cop dog, not just a mutt sent here for your fun! I want to bring you back home, make you testify against these monsters, can you understand?!” At least, he was fairly sure the crowd couldn’t hear a word. A part of him wondered if they were rooting for him now…
---
“Please,” Riddle said to the empty air. “I know you didn’t fall for it. You couldn’t be so weak, Tarot. Show me some respect and materialize back.”
The TV screen flashed to life, showing Tarot’s scolding expression. “A convincing illusion for any lesser mind. A good technique: make others believe what you want them believe, to the point they could even die. You earned your title, Riley, but tell me. Why?”
The cat scoffed. “Hey, it’s a job. It pays well, it gives me a better life than the streets did, and I got someone to take care of. What’s your excuse? Too many comic books, or is this your idea of hobby? Rescue endangered animals? Are you a PETA supernatural division agent?” He took the remote, and aimed it at the screen, turning it off.
Tarot materialized back, sitting on Marcela’s desk. “I am here on behalf of a dearest friend, and on behalf of countless lost souls.”
“Friend? Is it that ‘Peanut’ your party is thinking about so much? Wow, he must be of some value for you to organize such a quarry.”
“You should worry about something else.”
This time, Riddle showed a ferocious grin. “The ‘lost souls’? Please, as if I cared!”
---
“Stupid,” Darius muttered.
Kevin leaned his muzzle closer. He heard the humans inciting him to kill the loser. There was a real urgency in their voices, as if they knew something the Doberman didn’t.
“I…said…STUPID!” Darius roared and his leg shot up and hit Kevin right in the plexus as he was sent flying back and onto the sand.
In a moment, the tableau was turned and Darius was standing up. He wasn’t furious for being pushed down by such a simple move. He looked…happy. “I have been trained by countless fights, your attack couldn’t possibly hurt me for long, but I must admit it, I hadn’t seen that in such a long time,” he said to the poor adversary, who was all curled up and trying to regain his breath. “My masters were idiots, you are strong. But you had your chance and you lost it. I fight because I like it, I fight to win. And I will use all tricks I have.” He walked toward Kevin, who was just feeling a bit better. “But you made me look weak, and I will make you suffer a bit for this…” he raised his fist.
And he stroke.
And again.
And again.

Natasha turned her eyes from that scene, for a moment, then forced herself to look back.
A part of her knew she could get herself out of that predicament with a couple of moves, and perhaps kill this Delasangre witch… But it wouldn’t serve if she’d die a moment later, only for another member of the family to take Marcela’s place in the business.
“This is so much interesting, don’t you find?” Marcela asked. “I wonder if your own dog will make a more interesting show.”
---
“I know that,” Tarot said. “You come from a harsh world, like many other strays, and this city is especially unforgiving with them. I recognize your talent for making it to this age alive, though your soul is scarred and in need of healing.”
The cat narrowed his eyes. “’Healing’? Lady, if you saw what I had to see and endure throughout my life, you wouldn’t speak like that! Sorry for your happy thoughts, but this is not a world that allows for weaknesses. I protect the Kings of Champions, I care for them and in return I am free to use my talents at my best and this whole circuit depends on me. What could you possibly offer that my masters aren’t giving to me already?!”
Tarot stood silent for a full minute before saying, “The truth.”
“What?”
Tarot’s emerald glow wrapped her body like a fluid. Her voice assumed a terrible, echoing quality that made the walls of reality tremble as she said one single word.
“SPEAK!”
---
Darius raised the almost inert Doberman, holding him by the throat. “That was fun, but it had to end.”
Kevin was a mess. His face had been reduced to almost a pulp. He could barely keep his eyes open. One ear was bent at an unnatural angle, more than one tooth had fallen, and a couple of ribs had gone into a lung.
“I won’t offend you with more undue pain, puppy,” the fighter said. “Just tell the Devil I sent you.” He started to squeeze.
“Not today,” the poor Doberman croaked…and smiled, for how much he could do in his conditions.
Darius stopped squeezing, puzzled. “Say what?”
“I said…not today…” Kevin pointed a dripping, trembling finger at the figure he had drawn in the sand with his own blood as he was beaten up.
The figure of a cross drawn inside a circle, with two triangle at the cross’ base!
“Gotcha,” Kevin said, before losing consciousness.
The symbol glowed with an emerald fire.
The crowd fell silent. The air itself seemed to fall still, as if fearing what was about to happen…
---
Several years ago, in Babylon Gardens, there was a place called House Whiteman.
Behind its façade, it hid a Pet Fight Club, a place of unspeakable pain for the hundreds of innocents soul who died there, where love was perverted into something not less horrible than the gruesome fate that the fighters and their victims met. It had gone on for years, before the Police apprehended the Whitemans and the house was left abandoned, never to be inhabited anymore but by it’s sad and angry ghosts.
So rooted was that evil, that it permeated the very land the house was built on. Even when a man called Martin Foster demolished it to rebuild a new place that would make the neighborhood forget of the Whiteman horrors, those ghosts were still there. Waiting to come back to that life they had been brutally denied.
Martin’s sorrow over his own faults had worked as a catalyzer. Soon, the ghosts of House Whiteman had found their way back to this plane of existence. They came within a hair’s breadth to haunting the whole Babylon Gardens. Helping them finding peace and save Martin’s soul had been a hard test for those involved in it.
Remember House Whiteman.
And now imagine something far, far worse than that. Imagine a place like that, but as wide as a whole city. Imagine not hundreds, but hundreds of thousands of those 'lost souls', as Tarot had euphemistically called them.
Death, pain, torture, sorrow, abandonment, rage, frustration, and every possible kind of physical punishment. Multiplied decade after decade, impregnating every pore, every corner, every single component of this city.
When Kevin, under instructions of Tarot, had drawn that symbol with the blood of an innocent dog, not only had the symbol activated its power of folding space.
It had folded space and time into that monstrous parallel world that had been built soul upon soul.
And now those darkest energies had been released, uncontrolled.
Should such power be translated into a physical manifestation, it would be like three times the most powerful nuclear bomb ever built by human hands.
In spiritual terms, it meant one thing only.
Annihilation.
---
“STOP IT! PLEASE STOOOOOP IIIITTT!!!”
Being a telepath had proven useful to Riddle. It had helped him make the best of his otherwise miserable, hopeless existence. Instead of ending up in a gutter or into the hungry maw of some deranged fighter, he had become the Shadow King, the first most important pet.
He had always known what the business was about. Even before coming in touch with the real world of PFC, he had heard the stories, seen the corpses of the most unfortunate ones, seen his friends disappear and never be seen again...
And even the strays were a rarity at Isla de la Paz. To survive past younghood, you must be tough like a fighter yourself, no exceptions.
Riley had been lucky, he had a gift that had made him valuable. He had told himself that, at least, he would do something useful –protect the King, save his life whenever needed.
He hadn’t earned many friends that way. The other animals hated him because he would protect the High Butcher. And then a King of Champions wouldn’t live really very long.
Except for Darius. Darius was a real fighter, one who would put his heart into it. A skilled, witful one. Formerly a cop dog, he had had the advantage of a training and he had put it to good use.
At first, Riddle had treated Darius just like another King, meat to be soon disposed of, the show must go on… But, as the new champ lived on, Riddle had dared to develop feelings for him, a sense of…friendship, something he thought he had forgotten.
And when Darius had returned said feeling, Riley had promised himself to seal even tighter his own soul from guilt or any other ‘weak’ feelings. He would protect Darius, perhaps even save him from the arena and run away with him. And the rest of the world could fall into the abyss for what he was concerned!

Now, the Abyss had come to claim him.
Tarot had used the right word.
The dead were speaking. They were speaking to Riddle, drowning his sensitive mind into a sea of blood and pain and despair and other terrible things. They spoke to him and he knew every one of them and knew what they had suffered. They pleaded him to help them, but help couldn’t come neither for them nor for him.
Riddle kept screaming, pleading Tarot to stop.
She just stood there, surrounded by her glowing aura, her fur and scruff ruffled by an ethereal current. “I am not doing anything, Riley. I am only showing you the truth you had denied to yourself. You could have done something to stop all of this, instead of caring for yourself only. Didn’t you say that you’re above all of this?”
The cat crawled to her, as if something was dragging him, pinning him down to the pavement, His face was a mask of the most sincere sorrow. “Please! Please, I was wrong! We were wrong all the time! Me and all those that came before me! Please make them stop talking! I will help you! Please, Darius must be hurting so much! Ple-ease…”
Tarot nodded. To the air, she said, “Kevin, it is done. You may erase the symbol now.”
Silence.
“Kevin?”
Silence.
Tarot frowned. “This is most unfortunate.”
---
Fido still remembered it.
He and a group of friends, and Sabrina, had been at the old Foster Mansion, once, while Martin was away. By accident, they had been locked inside all day long.
And during their stay, Max had talked about ghosts, and Fido had clearly perceived something sinister walking in that very house Something he couldn’t see nor smell, but it was there, like a hungry animal, waiting. Even Sabrina had been edgy, and she was one experienced cat when it came to paranormal.
This was times worse.
This time, he could see them.
And he wasn’t the only one.
There was a cat, huddling in a corner, holding to her litter, looking at the terrified dogs with a pitiful, pleading look. “They want to toss us in the arena. Please, help us. Can you please help us? Please…” she would repeat time and again, asking for a help she would never get.
And judging by the conditions of her body and those of her litter, it was clear what had they done to them in that arena. Fido thought of his Sabrina and their kitten, hoping she would never ever see something like that.
“I will soon be with Poppa, you know?” said a dog from another corner. The poor creature was about Peanut’s age, an indefinite breed wiith a long snout, a white fur matted with blood and chunks of it missing. He was absurdly happy as he said, like a broken record, “They promised it! They say that poppa is waiting for me, he went first into the arena, but I know he’ll make it, he’s so strong!”
Hannibal was weeping, a rare sight for those who knew him. He wanted to hold out his arms and hug the poor thing, tell him that everything would be all right…but Budweiser held him.
Ralph could only cry tears of frustration, unable like the others to shut out those voices, hating like never before the responsible for that sufferance!
Diego kept looking at the door. It was soundproof, and yet whispers and voices were coming through the steel panels, voices that spoke of things even worse than those the dogs were forced to share their cell with…
Then the door opened. The dogs looked at it, not daring to hope rescue had come.
This time, it wasn’t a silhouette against a blinding light that showed to their eyes.
Fido recognized it. Or, at least, he recognized that particular dog from the pictures of the veterinarian coroner.
It was one of the monster dogs. The male that had threatened the shelter, the one killed by Antares.
Many things ran through the minds of Fido and Ralph, and none pleasant. They were practically impotent if that thing decided to exact vengeance for—
“Come,”The mastiff hybrid said with that gravel voice many innocents had learned to fear. He turned and started to walk away along the corridor.
Fido didn’t even question the event. Followed by the others, he just started walking on the path of that creature –not to mention that, whatever would happen from now on, he would not stay huddled in a corner weeping himself to death like a scared pup! He must confide on the fact that, if the echo of the creature that used to terrorize Babylon Gardens hadn’t attacked them yet, it was for a reason…

The monster dog stopped in front of the exit. He pointed an arm. The fact that, this time, he didn’t say a word made the gesture even the more ominous.
Fido and Ralph ran into the Arena first…

…And what greeted them almost knocked them out of their minds right away
This time, they couldn’t just elaborate. When they would try to remember what they had seen and heard, they would just not remember. The psychologists would say it was a self-defense mechanism, something to deal with a trauma bigger than life. Something that would take time to heal.
But right in that moment Fido, Ralph, Budwesier and Diego knew they would never heal. A scar in their mind would remain, marking them into the very core of their souls.
And maybe it was because of that, because their already stressed and tired minds needed something, anything else to focus on rather than the hellish circle the arena had been turned to, they ran toward the only scene they could make out…
…And that was the woman huddling against the figure of a familiar Doberman!
“Natasha!” Diego howled, torn between joy and terror. Whatever these ghosts wanted, they weren’t onto her. They just stood there, in a grim circle, mementos of endless pain, while the others…feasted on the living. That was the correct term, and none of the wake dogs wanted to think to another, even worse.
Diego ignored the ghosts, ignored everything else but the woman curled up protectively against Kevin. “Natasha! Are you alright? Please speak to me!”
The woman opened suddenly the eyes she had kept shut so far. “Diego!” she let go of Kevin and hugged him tight, as if he was the last beacon of hope in the horror that the world had been turned into.
“Kevin!” Fido bent down over the wounded body of his friend. He was breathing, thank Dog, nothing short of a miracle considering the shape he was in… But when he and Ralph tried to lift him up, they saw he was holding tight to an American Akita equally unconscious and curled up.
“H-help him…” Kevin muttered, barely opening one swollen eye. “Please help him too…”
Bud was about to do just that…when everything stopped.
Just like that. As if someone had turned off a switch. The scream of the living, the voices of the dead –everything was replaced by a not less shocking silence.
“I don’t know if you were incredibly brave or stupid,” said the black-and-white cat, while rubbing off the symbol with a foot, “But thank you for saving the King.”
Fido looked at Kevin. “He was the guy who made you this?”
Kevin coughed and a strip of scarlet ran from his mouth. “Good guy…believe…me…” Then he fainted again.
“At least,” Tarot said, “the spirits believed him, if they didn’t harm him while he was protecting his enemy. This is good.” She touched Kevin’s face, infusing arcane energies in him. “I stabilized him, but the science of man will have to take care of the rest now.”
Budweiser looked around. The arena was…a tomb. The cheering crowd was nothing less than a carpet of corpses, their eyes and faces reflecting forever the horrors they had to face, the bad karma accumulated with a vengeance.
The hound decided he had to deal this mess the only way he knew: he would alert all authorities in the Mex government and send for all available forces down to the boy scout to clean up and collect the evidence.
Not to mention helping out Dog knew how many animal prisoners…if what had happened here had happened throughout the city…
Peanut was one lucky, lucky dog for missing all of this…

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Wed Apr 11, 2012 1:41 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
I knew it. I knew Evan would probably be the one who was picked.

So we are back to ghosts and spirits, and with a few refrences to season one. I don't know how you do it Valerio, I just can't stop reading.

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Wed Apr 11, 2012 2:07 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
the thought running through my mind right now.
At least it was lessened by the fact that I felt the personality in the last update didn't match Bruja.

now I'm sad because I liked my characters and wanted to see them brought to life in your fic, but they both were made so they could only be used in this role.

on to the actual story, great as always. I couldn't stop reading it.

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Last edited by RandomGeekNamedBrent on Wed Apr 11, 2012 2:23 pm, edited 2 times in total.



Wed Apr 11, 2012 2:16 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
RandomGeekNamedBrent wrote:
the thought running through my mind right now.

At least it was lessened by the fact that I felt the personality in the last update didn't match Bruja.
now I'm sad because I liked my characters and wanted to see them brought to life in your fic, but they both were made so they could only be used in this role.

on to the actual story, great as always. I couldn't stop reading it.

...And WHO said they are never to appear in the future???
Do you know something I don't, Brent? :?

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Wed Apr 11, 2012 2:21 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
Bah. Defeat. We meet again =3 *goes to get some quarters*

With the anticipation being over, it's got me thinking of reading this series on my downtimes when i have the chance, so hopes to seeing how things go!

Also - Jedi Yarn tricks GO! *throws Socks*

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
valerio wrote:
...And WHO said they are never to appear in the future???
Do you know something I don't, Brent? :?

Well, even if they do, Aseseno/Ace won't be the King of Champions, and Bruja won't be his body guard. unless there are more kings of champions. As I said, they were written for those parts, so there would need to be a bit of tweaking done to their character sheets before they'll be used.

it was a nice trick to give Riddle Bruja's eyes. you're welcome for those : P

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Wed Apr 11, 2012 2:26 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
RandomGeekNamedBrent wrote:
At least it was lessened by the fact that I felt the personality in the last update didn't match Bruja.

I pretty much knew mine wern't the ones that were picked when Tarot said that the shadow king messes with dark magic.
Know one knew that Sammy had magical powers in my history of him, plus the kind of powers that Tarot was talking about didn't seem to fit creating fire and ice in the palm of your hand.
So mine were out from the start. I feel bad for you Brent, to get that high and then being shot down.

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Wed Apr 11, 2012 2:56 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
now you guys make me feel as if I was the bad guy here *cries in a corner* :cry:

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
valerio wrote:
...And WHO said they are never to appear in the future???Do you know something I don't, Brent? :?


Well, if you're implying that some of the other entries may be added in future updates, then you're not a bad guy.
We can all cling to the hope that one or both of our entries may still be added.

(And don't cry, you're making me feel bad...)

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Wed Apr 11, 2012 3:04 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
Don't feel bad about it, Val. I mope alot, so it's not a bad thing when i'm moping.

Also, i'm competitive, so i'm naturally like this!

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Wed Apr 11, 2012 4:25 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
I feel better :D

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Wed Apr 11, 2012 4:29 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
I'm glad.
I don't like to see people sad.

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Wed Apr 11, 2012 4:31 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
Kinda surprised, really.

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Wed Apr 11, 2012 5:11 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
Awesome updates :lol:

I hope that maybe the other entries will be used somehow in the future


Wed Apr 11, 2012 6:31 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
Kevin used tackle. It was super effective.
That was a quite neat explanation for Kevin there.

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Wed Apr 11, 2012 8:32 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
Another great storyline! Quite the scene you have painted here, Val.

Congrats to Evan! Wish I had the time to put a couple characters up for this. Oh well, maybe next time...

Now for the escape! :D

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
Skruffy wrote:
Awesome updates :lol:

I hope that maybe the other entries will be used somehow in the future

oh, they will be...they wil be... ;)

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
then I can't wait to see how you work out any kinks caused by them not filling their intended roles.

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Thu Apr 12, 2012 1:56 am
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