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Shuffled Deck: Phantom Team

Chapter Text

       In Tokyo, Japan, a church had its mass in full swing. It was a massive cathedral, easily the size of a skyscraper, with ornate and detailed stained glass windows depicting previous police commissioners and statues of SIU directors from years long past all decorating the exterior. Inside, people dressed in simple robes and blindfolds on were praying at the altar of a man with a police badge in one hand, and a set of scales in another. Suddenly, they heard the bells ring, which only happened if an intruder had breached the inner sanctum. Three men, dressed in armor from the crusader era marched into the room. Curiously, their armor was painted like it was a police officer’s uniform.

       “Where is the intruder?” One demanded, pulling out his sword.

       Up above them, a man leapt between the rafters. The worshipers looked around, panic starting to settle in among them. The man stopped and stood proudly in the moonlight, his shadow cast for all to see.

       “Up there! In the rafters!” Another one cried out, pointing at the man.

       The man had short silver hair, a well-built frame, and steely grey eyes. As for clothes, he wore a black tangzhuang shirt with a golden dragon printed on the right side, black dress pants with silver trimmings, dress shoes with gold scales that clinked whenever he took a step, white gloves with golden claws attached. On his face, he wore a silver masquerade mask with the nose curved like an owl, and the Roman Numeral “II” imprinted in gold on the forehead. The man smiled, turned, and continued on his way when he heard a voice buzz in his ear.

       “Seeker? This is Ace. Are you alright?”

       “I’m fine. Didn’t expect the Shadow to pull that. How are the others?” the man known as ‘Seeker’ replied as he made way to an exit directly ahead of him.

       “Outlaw, Pariah, and Carmen are too injured to try again. Justicar volunteered to make sure they get out. What about you?”

       “I’m fine, got some Shadows chasing me. But I’ll shake them. If what you said is true, then that only leaves you, me, and Skull to try and take on the Shadow. I don’t like those odds.” Seeker replied, climbing up the building, carefully ignoring the crusaders. He found an open window and went through, now on the ledge of a very narrow stone walkway.

       “We have no choice, Seeker. If he doesn’t have a change of heart, then we’ll all be dead by tomorrow. Then who will be left to avenge his master’s victims?”

        Seeker was shimmying the church from the outside, watching a silhouette of a crusader run by through a stained-glass window. He hid behind a pillar, waiting for the guard to pass.

       “Where’d the heretic go?”

       “Stay out of sight Seeker. You’ll never get back to the Shadow if you have to fight the whole way up.” Another voice told him.

       “Venus? What happened? You dropped out of contact, and I feared the worst.”

       “Shadows attacked my position. I was able to lose them, so I can help you out. At least for now.”

       Seeker simply nodded and, like he had before, began to climb the massive cathedral in order to reunite with what was left of his team. He entered the church again, and now found himself in the belltower, and there were several bells of various sizes. As he walked along the wooden beams wide enough for three people side-by-side, he heard a voice behind him.

       “STOP RIGHT THERE CRIMINAL SCUM!!”

        Seeker turned around and saw a crusader. Seeker smiled, sprinted to him, and before the guard could react, leaped high above his head, his feet landing firmly on the guard’s shoulders. Seeker’s clawed gloves grabbed the part of the helmet that shielded the face and pulled hard. The face mask was ripped off and Seeker kicked with all of his strength, launching the crusader forward. The guard hunched over and began to twitch, and soon his entire body dissolved into a puddle of tar. A puddle that soon reformed itself into a minotaur with mechanical legs.

       “Analyzing… this opponent is weak. Take him down, and fast.” Venus ordered.

       Seeker smiled, and reached for his mask, removing it from his face. When he did, a figure materialized behind him, wielding a massive naginata.

       “Tear him apart!” Seeker ordered.

       The figure raised his weapon and the air crackled as electricity surged and gathered around the blade as if it was an antenna. Once the blade was coated with enough lightning to power a city, the figure slammed his weapon down, a cascading wave of electricity surging towards the monster in front of Seeker. Once the energy hit, the minotaur let out a scream of agony and vanished into ash.

       “Good job, now hurry! The Treasure will dematerialize in a few hours, and the heist will be a failure. Skull and Justicar are already there and waiting for you.”

       How did it come to this? Seeker thought to himself, and remembered back to when it all began.