39 5 days lef
A tall man with bloody fists casually walked around the barricades and stepped forward in full view of all the awakenees present.
He sneered, like if he was finding that the sight in front of him was pitiful, put his hands on his hips in a dominant posture and began to examine everyone present through his sunglasses.
Looking left to right, he didn't dwell for more than half a second on each one of them as if no one here deserves more of his time.
His beard and sunglasses greatly hid his expressions, but every time someone felt he was looking at him, he had the unpleasant feeling of being looked down upon.
This arrogant attitude had the knack of irritating internally Ewan who wasn't used to remaining passive in front of insults and bad behaviours, but like all the others he didn't respond to the provocation of this man and content himself to wait and don't react.
Whether it was him or the others, after what Bruce had done, no one wanted to be the next one to find himself in the crosshairs of a potentially psychopathic high-level awakenee.
However, 'there is something different about this man.' Ewan thought looking at the man more closely.
He was provoking them but unlike Bruce, this man didn't paralyze them with fear and unlike the man with the spear, he didn't give them a feeling of deep danger.
In fact, beyond the words this man had spoken and beyond the fear Ewan had felt upon seeing him coming, he was feeling a natural hostility towards him; a desire to travel the few yards that separated them to beat him up.
Seeing that no one had the courage to answer him, the man continued his provocations, "I'm not like the brainless guy from earlier, I'm not going to lose my mind over an insult from cowards. If you have something to say, grow yourself a pair of balls and say it. I promise you I'm not going to hurt you if you're honest." He said, raising his right hand in the air to swear it with a sarcastical smile revealing his gleaming white teeth.
When Ewan looked around, he saw that others were starting to cringe just like him. Since the aura of that man wasn't murderous or suffocating, they relied on his appearance to judge whether they could believe what he was saying and the word that came to their mind as they looked at him was 'paradoxical'.
He was a white man with an impressive physique in his late twenties, maybe mid twenties, it was hard to tell with his finely trimmed beard making him look older. He was almost 6 feet and 2 inches tall and had a very imposing yet perfectly proportioned musculature for his build.
In fact, if one had to guess his profession, the first thing that would come to mind would be a professional combat athlete. Both for his physique and for the ease he had with violence because strangely... He seemed to be in his element with this blood which was entirely covering his fists.
On the other hand, he had the style of a tourist and it was breaking his intimidating image. How could they take seriously someone who was wearing khaki shorts, a yellow short-sleeved shirt and especially... flip-flops.
Gabriella stepped forward, seeing the behavior she was having, Judith tried to stop her by holding her arm. However, Gabriella was determined to stand up to this man and removed Judith's hand from her arm without really taking her concerns into account.
'Is she stupid or what?' Thought Judith without realizing that it was because of what she had said earlier in relation to what differed between the high level awakenees and them that Gabriella was doing this.
A smile formed on Gabriella's face, she felt confident and planted herself right in front of the man imitating his posture, 'I'm going to show everyone that he's just a clown who just had the chance to be in the right place at the right time.'
The man lowered his sunglasses slightly with annoyance and didn't reveal his eyes by doing that. He wasn't very surprised to see the smile on Gabriella's face, he had understood what profile of person he was dealing with...
...Unlike Gabriella, "All that sets us apart is a few levels, so I don't recommend you talking to people like us who will catch up with you in no time." She said while widening her smile.
The man looked around and saw smiles, nods and other signs of approval for what Gabriella had said.
He sighed because he wasn't only disappointed at such a naive statement but also because he didn't expect there to be so many people to believe it, "Yeah, sure, you know what?" He said rubbing his eyes under his sunglasses, as if he couldn't believe the people in front of him were awakenees, "It's something even less insurmountable than the difference in levels that separates us. What separates you all from me, it's this." He said pointing the barricades with one of his index.
No one understood what he meant and seeing Gabriella gloating, he explained himself before she got any ideas, "One of the reasons you'll never reach Hulk's ankle let alone the ankle of the guy with me and mine is that you'll never walk through those barricades knowing that other people will take care of the monsters behind and that you will stay safe by doing nothing."
Gabriella didn't give up, she had stopped smiling but she didn't let go of her defiant attitude, she knew that her aspirations weren't limited to that, "Who do you think were fighting here before you arrived?" She said.
"I'm seriously asking myself this question, are you dumb or are you doing it on purpose?" He made a quick pause by sighing again, "That's exactly what I've told you. At first, you needed to fight for your survival, but now that we're here it's not the case anymore and although nobody forbid anyone from coming to participate in the war effort, it has been two days since none of you went beyond this barricades."
Judith came to support Gabriella who was looking at her shoes now, just like at least half of those present she realized that she had a part of cowardice in her.
"We still had a normal life 4 days ago. At that time we didn't had to kill monsters coming straight out of horror movies." Judith's words reminded everyone that people with the same courage as them weren't numerous, the ones with their heads down finally raised them.
"Contrary to what you are saying I think we can be proud of what we have achieved given the context. As awakenees, we have chose to fight... like you." She said, pointing her finger at him.
Everyone was looking at the man, thinking they had a satisfactory explanation for their behavior through Judith.
Instead of responding, he reached into the front pocket of his shirt and pulled out a cigar. He raised it to his lips and walked over to where his partner had gone, passing between people.
Judith didn't add anything else, but Gabriella having been frustrated that her beliefs had been shaken again, opened her mouth without being asked with a satisfied expression, "Looks like he lost in the words fight."
The man stopped when he heard this.
Flames slowly began to cover his arms and he raised the left one.
On contact with this fire, the blood on his fists disintegrated. Gabriella aware that she had perhaps made the biggest mistake of her life began to sweat profusely.
Fortunately, he only used his fire to light his cigar after that and then he put it out.
"This is how I see things." He said with the cigar slightly disturbing his pronunciation, "Fighting to defend would be enough if we forget the notion of fucking reality, moron. It's not enough to fight to win a fight, it's basic thinking."
He took the cigar out of his mouth so that his next words could be fully understood, "After my 4 days as an awakenees, I have understood that there are 3 categories of awakenees. First, the majority of you, those who only fight because they have to. Second, those who fight if they have the chance. Lastly, those who create their own opportunities for themselves to become stronger; your boss, Hulk, the 'Goblins Nightmare', my partner, me and some other people in New York that you should watch out for."
Hearing that he had quoted the 'Goblins Nightmare' Gabriella got angry, "I advise you... not to compare you to her again!"
The man turned his head towards Gabriella, he put his cigar back in his mouth and took off his sunglasses.
Gabriella fell on her knees instantly.
During a brief moment, She saw a gaze with vermilion red pupils staring at her like the eyes of a predator at the top of the food chain looking at an insect.
The impression they were giving her was the same as Bruce aura, but in a more controlled way because she seemed to be the only one affected by the man's look.
'What kind of guy is he?!' She thought holding her head with her hands and looking at the floor in tears.
"I think I'm not one of the person dishonoring that name by saying it." He said, finishing trampling Gabriella's arrogance.
It was only Gabriella who had seen the man's eyes and he had put his sunglasses back on in the meantime, so Judith had no idea what was happening to Gabriella, she just knew it was his fault, "What did you do to her?! You had promised!" She said, not hiding her anger.
"I'm not a liar, I didn't hurt her." He replied indifferently.
"A little advice before I go." He added as Judith tried to get Gabriella to her feet, "In the next 5 days, the monster attacks will intensify exponentially. I can guarantee you that the ones I mentioned in the first category of awakenees will die before the end of those 5 days if they don't change from a 1 to at least a 2. So, make your choice keeping in mind that deep down you might really be a 1." He said letting a puff of smoke out of his mouth and walking out of here.
Judith turned to Ewan when she thought that the man was far enough, "Who were these two guys?" She asked with Gabriella still in her arms.
"Don't know, they are not from the organisation, we just know that they live somewhere in Manhattan." He replied.
The man in question had managed to catch up with his partner in a wide avenue that had been spared by the fighting in Manhattan.
"You haven't behaved like a total asshole?" The man with the spear asked when he saw him come a few yards behind him.
"It's okay, I was nice, I even gave them advice, ah ah ah..." He said before laughing and causing some intermitent puffs of smoke to come out of his mouth.
❗ [The Disciple of Death has been chosen] ❗
❗ [The Disciples of the 4 Horsemen of the Apocalypse have all been chosen] ❗
At the same time the two men were startled, they had the same notifications at the same time.
The man with the spear turned to his partner and smiled lightly at him, "It seems that we will not have to wait too much."