Chapter 1: Codename MESSIAH
"Today is the day I die," she told the horde of Angels in front of her, "but you'll have to entertain me before I do!"
She walks forward, Gauntlet in hand and a confident smirk on her face. The monsters gathered together and prepared to unleash their judgment, a final resort all too common with these Providence Class Angels. This monster of a lady stands strong, slowly changing her strut to a jog, then her jog to a rush. Her gauntlet glowed a black aura so bright it devours the holy light.
The black aura envelops her arm into a giant blade of violet steel. The broad width of the blade was only rivaled by its intense length, far exceeding the entire height of the woman alone. It was a weapon forged from the very cells in her body. Her Gauntlet firmly grasped the handle.
It was humanity's first creation to kill those monstrosities. It was humanity's first creation to be wielded by their Messiah.
She was the first Messiah.
Her blade slashed and pierced the horde one by one. Wings of white tinted with the red of her enemies fell down from the sky one by one. The Gauntlet she holds occasionally transformed into a giant, gaping claw which ate the entirety of whatever was unfortunate to have been devoured by her. She fed on their deaths, and grew stronger for it.
Hours passed, she still stood strong, fighting for the people she loved. She became tired and weak as this battle drew on longer and longer.
In a last ditch effort, the Angels prepared one final attack to kill the predator in front of them. Without fear or hesitation, she ran in, prepared to take the full brunt of the attack in order to kill the last few.
She slayed them.
But it was too late for her.
The lady collapsed on top of the pile rubble amassed from her destruction, her blade stabbed into the last Angel there.
"I may fall here, but humanity will prevail over you monsters one day. I'm no longer their messiah, I never was."
She reached out to the sky, the darkened veins in her hand swollen and convulsing. Her lips spread into one final smile.
"I know you will be the one to guide humanity. Never falter. And remember... I love you."
Sixteen years later...
"Director, the doctors believe to have found a possible candidate among the list of volunteers."
With pristine dexterity he skims through the file his secretary hands him, only to abruptly stop the moment he saw the face of the candidate. He laughs to himself then looks up to his diligent secretary.
"Call him in for the procedure. And inform the doctors that I will be observing and participating through it as well," he orders her. She bows gracefully, takes the file, and leaves without a sound. The director stands from his seat, walks towards the gilded Gauntlet resting inside a glass case. He gently caresses the case with his finger. Thoughts forming in his head give way to chaotic visions of the future he strives for.
"It must run in the family," he says to himself.
I was scared. Could they blame me? I volunteered because I wanted to support our Guardians from the back of the vanguard, but suddenly they tell me that I'm compatible for a Gauntlet. I have no choice in whether or not I want to undergo the procedure to connect myself to the Gauntlet.
In all honesty, I don't mind being chosen for the front lines. It's understandable, they need people out there to protect the masses.
What scared me was the fact that less than 11% of those who undergo procedure actually come out alive.
I was scared.
"Doe, John. The preparations are ready. Please come to Procedure Room 1."
With hesitation in my heart, I stand up, legs shaking and palms sweating. I walk through the lobby of the base and enter the central elevator. The automated system brings me down, far down to where the infirmary and procedure rooms are. As I exit, I see a girl sitting down outside one of the rooms. She notices me looking at her and I immediately turn away.
"Hey, is ignoring her REALLY what you do when you see a cute girl?" she asks me. I stop and glance back at her, a little embarrassed about not acknowledging her.
"Speechless? I can't blame you, my beauty is one of a kind after all!" she says with a smile. I'm not sure how to answer that.
"I'm just messing with you. Are you John Doe? They called for you earlier. Procedure Room 1 is farthest down the hall."
"Thank you miss-"
"Woah," she interrupts me and puts her hand up to stop me, "I'm no 'Miss', okay? I'm still sixteen! My name is Lailah. Nice too meet you John."
I shake her hand slowly. The door behind her opens.
"Looks like it's my turn. Good luck with your procedure! And hey, let's go out somewhere when we're done. The city at night is beautiful, even if it's still ruined."
She turns away and walks inside, waving to me with a smirk on her face. I wave back. I was sure she noticed me blush.
I'm still scared.
The long hallway seemed to stretch for infinity. It was dimly lit, with lights above the doors that flicker every now and then. Now that I think about it, the entire base seemed to be poorly lit.
Right now I am currently in the Ark, mankind's first base established to house Guardian Angels. This base is also known as the true front lines of the Guardian Angels. The Guardians here are constantly busy with fighting as the enemy Angels congregate around this area the most.
I know it's confusing. Establishing "Guardian Angels" and the monster "Angels" is kind of difficult to do. Normally the soldiers are just referred to as Guardians.
The Guardians here are all courageous and brave. Around the Ark are settlements for people to live in, surrounded by the wall we call Aegis. It's pretty poetic. Humanity is protected by the Wall of Aegis, and the Guardians serve as the Scythe of Harpe.
Eventually I reach the end of the hallway. Large white doors stand tall in front of me. A small plate next to the handle reads "1: MESSIAH".
I steel my heart and open the doors.
I'm so scared.
A voice echoes out through the white room I find myself in.
"Welcome Mr. Doe. Or do you prefer John? You're fairly young, but in light of your courageous choice to join the front lines, I'm obliged to refer to you with a proper title."
I look up to see people behind a glass window. That must be some sort of observation room. I gulp down my fears, straighten my back, and hold my head up high. There was one man that I could see behind that glass. He wears a large white coat adorned with what seemed to be emblems. He has long, black hair that barely trailed past his neck. That was all I could perceive from this distance. His voice was deep, but imposing.
He was clearly an important man.
I look forward and see a table with a gold gauntlet sitting on top of it. This was what's known as a Devil's Gauntlet, the weapons made to kill Angels. No one knows how they were made, except for the few scientists who developed it and the first person to ever use one. They were known as the Messiah, and she was an outstanding Guardian who outperformed all others despite the advances made In Gauntlets. She was an idol to all. Even after death, we humans cling to the hope of a Messiah. Although ever since she died, we've been desperately searching for a new one.
"I'm sure you know what to do. Go put on the Gauntlet. You're right-handed, so we chose one for your dominant hand."
I approach the Gauntlet and stare at it.
"Once you put it on the Gauntlet will attempt to bind to your hand by fusing with your blood. If this goes successfully, the Gauntlet will serve as your new hand."
"With the powers of the Gauntlet you will gain the ability to fight Angels. You most likely know about how it works. The Gauntlet will take form of a weapon made to kill Angels by utilizing the cells of your body."
"It will be a painful process, but if you manage to prevail you will become humanity's Guardian. A shield and sword of mankind to eliminate and eradicate our oppressors. Focus on your will to live, and you will surely endure the pain."
But I have no choice. They won't let me back away from this.
I reach out towards the Gauntlet. Fear spreads from my fingers to my heart. It beats faster and faster, trying to burst from my chest and stop me from doing this.
I'm scared... Of dying.
I'm not scared to fight.
I thrust my hand into the Gauntlet and brace myself. I felt the inside pierce my hand in multiple spots. It felt like my hand was covered in a cage of spikes.
But... It didn't hurt.
"Ah, one more thing," the voice from the observation room says, "that Gauntlet is a special one. It's the Gauntlet of the first Messiah."
What? The first Messiah?!
"We've injected cells known as the Messiah Gene into it, so those cells will soon start to bind to your blood."
Wait, a new type of cell?! Then that means-
"GRGK! GAAUGH! AAAAAAAAH!"
My body would do anything to force out and expel the foreign matter. That's why people die during these processes, the injection of foreign matter into the body is naturally repelled by the body.
I could feel the Gauntlet fusing to my hand, literally becoming one with my skin. For a moment I couldn't tell which nerves were mine, and I lost feeling in my hand. But the excruciating pain came soon after, overwhelming my arm and spreading to the rest of my body. I fell over to the side, screaming and crying, losing control of my own body. I struggle to look at my hand and see the Gauntlet losing control, expanding larger and larger. I've seen that form before, the Gauntlet's devouring mode. I lost control and was flooded with waves of pain one after the other.
But inside my mind was a voice that spoke to me.
I couldn't hear what it said. Or maybe I just couldn't understand what it said. But there was something about it that calmed me and beckoned me to endure the pain.
I want to live.
I want to live!
I want to...
The pain subsides. I looked at the Gauntlet. It emitted a soft glow that rhythmically dimmed and lit. I noticed it matched my breathing.
"Congratualtions," I hear around me, "from now on, you will be known as our Messiah. I guess there's no need to decide on how I should be addressing you, my Messiah."
... I'm still scared.
Even if I have the Gauntlet of the first Messiah, I'm not a fighter. I'll be killed for sure by those Angels. And because I'm the Messiah now, everyone will be expecting so much from me.
... I heard the voice in my head once again.
I'll be okay. I know it.