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Mors Militis

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Lloyd couldn’t place exactly what felt wrong, but there was something about the night guard’s behavior that was off-putting.

His voice was surprisingly strong and teeth unchattering, despite how much he’d been shivering in the lobby. He was just a guard- why did he know exactly about some armor that wasn’t even on display? Maybe he was a history and/or legend buff, but there was something about the way he said “ spirits from the Cursed Realm .”

But… that was just Lloyd's own mind, right? His father was there, maybe he was just focusing on those words more. He tried to dismiss the feeling, but it remained there. Persistent.

Apparently, there was something to his feeling of wrongness, because the guard tried to hit him in the head with a hammer.

Lloyd jumped out of the way, narrowly avoiding him. The guard cast off the blanket, revealing he was wearing shining blue armor. “The Allied Armor? You stole it?”

“So Wu chose you to be the beloved green ninja? Silly old man!”

“How do you know Sensei? And if you have a bone to pick with me, maybe we can discuss things without weapons?”

The guard struck at him again, hitting boxes. “Hey!” Lloyd snapped. Those were relics . Killing Lloyd shouldn’t go hand in hand with the destruction of irreplaceable artifacts.

The boxes fell onto the guard, and Lloyd hurriedly dug him out. “I don’t want to hurt you.”

The guard started to growl, then he shuddered and a shadow moved out of him. Lloyd didn't even know that was possible before today. What's up with that night guard?

“What’s going on?” The guard asked, and his voice was different . Lloyd stared at the painting as it laughed.

Artifact be damned. He grabbed the painting and smashed it.

The shadow just moved out of it, moving to the golden Hypnobrai statue. “Foolish ninja. Your powers are useless! You think you can hurt a ghost? I can possess anything!”

The tail wrapped around Lloyd, dragging him up into the air. I’m going straight past fear, right through scared, and all the way onto terrified right now! Lloyd kicked as the shadow- a ghost -took a form in the sand.

“You’re a spirit from the Cursed Realm. How did you escape?” Lloyd huffed as he tried to free himself from the statue.

“When your father opened the door, he should have been more careful what came out.”

And Lloyd was surrounded by swirling sand, scraping at him and stinging his eyes and making it hard to breathe. The sand wove together like ribbons, yet each grain was a targeted attack against him, his eyes, his throat, his lungs, his soul .

No, his soul was safe from the sand. But there was something foreign tearing at his soul as if it were thin paper. The presence burned so intensely that Lloyd was fairly sure it might physically destroy him.

He screamed before blacking out.

The spirit smirked at the feeling of having claimed his vessel. Time to get to work.