My weapon is gravity. Gravity is my ally.
“Hey, shut it, you lowlifes! Mwahaha!”
The air ruptured where I pointed. The gravity in that infinitesimally small point increased exponentially.
All the golems that were in the castle instantly turned back into clay.
“Is that all you’ve got!? I heard you guys were tougher than this!”
My voice echoed through the ruined castle.
The Rampage Castle ruins.
The country was now known as the Dark States, but in days gone by (before the borders had been pushed back to where they were) this was part of the Dragon Empire. The story goes that there was a particularly unruly lord known as Rampage. It’s a shame that Rampage’s castle had been left to fall into ruin as it had.
I removed my goggles and took a bite of my rations.
Ugh. I know that rations are just a part of a soldier’s life, but I could kill for some real food.
I ended up in this rotten place because of a disastrous relationship.
Three days earlier…
“Long time no see. How’s it going?”
Curtis greeted me with a cheery tone. He was a popular local entertainer who went by the name of Phantasma Magician. We had known each other for years, and always got a bite to eat together whenever we could.
“Not great. I’ve missed more than a few meals lately. I’m sure you can tell.”
“Things are safer than they’ve ever been. There’s no real need for soldiers or mercenaries. I guess we should be thankful you haven’t started smashing up the place yet.”
“You don’t get it, do you? It’s not a matter of money. Hey, another.”
He ordered another grilled chicken from the waitress. Arrogant as always.
Phantasma Magician chuckled.
“I got a good job for you. Cleaning out an old castle out in the country. It should pay pretty well.”
“Do I look like a maid to you? You know my specialty. Try someone else.”
I lifted my mug up without ever laying a finger on it. The other customers looked a little startled as I twitched a finger and tilted the mug.
“I really think you should consider it. You see, the target this time… is a gravitomancer.”
“There it is!”
I slammed the table in reply. All the mugs in the bar started floating, and everyone screamed.
It was a rare gift among the people of Planet Cray, one that was quite separate from either magic or science. As rare as my heterochromia—having eyes of different colors.
In other words, a power unlike any other. It was hard to say just how powerful they were. Which bothered me, as I always wanted to know what I was up against.
“Having said that, it could’ve just been a lie.”
We spent half a day looking around the deserted castle, and though we found a few clay golems, we didn’t come across any gravitomancers.
According to Curtis, some of the locals wanted to use the castle, which sat facing the Gyze End Bay as a tourist destination. Any time they tried to enter, they were sent back crawling, albeit unharmed.
If the stories were true, there must have been a gravitomancer. If I were the one holding this territory, I wouldn’t let them go so easily.
It got dark.
“Ugh, this is useless. Let’s get some sleep.”
I spent the night there, reported to Curtis that I didn’t see anyone, and got paid. It really was a good job.
I lit a fire and lay down in the grass in an area that would have been the castle’s courtyard once upon a time.
Nothing happened. I couldn’t hear a thing.
I heard the faint rumble of a distant roar.
I jumped up.
As soon as I did…
The ground below me fell in.
“Whoa, guess we’re going all in from the start!”
That was closer than I liked. If I had hesitated for even a second, I would’ve died.
I stopped in midair and took in my surroundings.
Where was it? On the other side of the wall? Or perhaps under the grass?
I barely avoided the rush of wind. That was a Pull. If I had been caught by it, I would’ve been smashed into the ground.
I pointed in the direction I thought it was, and the wall came tumbling down.
…Then I saw it. A silver shadow.
I crossed my hands to charge up my force and aimed this way and that.
The ground began to cave in and suck down, almost like an explosion in reverse. If they were willing to go to such lengths, then I had to be just as serious.
I made a wide arc in the air and closed in on my adversary.
My enemy was quick. But they only just managed to avoid my attack.
I landed on the ground, leaving a small recess around my feet. I felt that the enemy had stopped to face me.
My lungs were crushed by the force of gravity; I let out an involuntary cry.
A crushing force came at me from above. A force as strong as the one I was exerting. It was like two wrestlers each in the other’s choke hold, trying to outlast their opponent.
The ground beneath us continued to collapse, and the walls of the castle started to break apart into a vortex.
“So, you want to fight to the end?”
I thought I heard a voice.
But maybe I hadn’t. At that rate it wouldn’t take long for the whole castle to fall down on top of us.
“Wait, wait! Let’s talk.”
“What are you talking about? You nearly killed me just now.”
“I came here to scout the place out. I’d been told there was some idiot like you hanging around here.”
“I’m not looking for work. All I need to do is scare the villagers a little and I can live here in peace. Do you know how much fruit I can get in this forest?”
Damn it. I didn’t have time for this monologuing.
“No. It’s time to…”
Oh, their power seems to be slipping. Perhaps I had the upper hand when it came to stamina?
“I-I see… All you want is a safe place to live? Then why don’t you hear what I have to say?”
“Not interested. As long as we have power like this, no one can get in our way.”
Wait. A woman’s voice?
“So what if I’m a woman?”
Wait, wait. If you’re actually reading my mind, then you should know I don’t fight women.
“Hmm, so what do we do now?”
The woman started to charge up again. If our talk went south, she was willing to decide there and then (until only one of us was left). She was a feisty one; I was starting to like her.
“Hold on, listen to me! The military life isn’t so bad. But if that doesn’t interest you, we can find someone else to help you out. You don’t have to hide here.”
“I’m used to being alone. It’s easier that way.”
“But you can’t live like this forever. Our power has value. Don’t waste it.”
“And why should I trust anything you have to say?”
I liked that she was wary. I had no choice. I was ready.
“I can get you money. Look for a man named Curtis in the next town over, give him my name, and he’ll pay you to leave.”
The woman finished charging up her power. I took a deep breath and readied for what was coming next.
“Phantasma Magician Curtis, he belongs to the circus…”
“What’s your name?”
“I am the Master of Gravity, Baromagnes! Tada!”
I ended with a blow that blasted the forest and ground around where the woman was standing.
I told you. I don’t fight women. It’s simple.
Hey, that’s my line.
I collapsed right there in the ruins, completely spent.
“Well, I’m shocked. Someone finally came around here and used your name to get money, Baromagnes.”
“I’m glad I gave it to you, just in case.”
“I’ll start sending that kid to work right away. Good job. Now we can set up our circus in the ruins of the castle. Well done.”
Phantasma Magician Curtis smiled warmly. So that was the goal all along? That was him for you.
“Oh. Construction’s going to be tough, I don’t suppose you could lend a hand? Things would go much more smoothly with a master of gravity around. And of course, you’d get paid.”
Hmph. He’s going to make me cry one of these days. I’ll remember this.
I snorted at him as I downed the disgusting drink. Next time, you’re on your own.
Long ago, people with abilities came together to form a group known as the Dark Irregulars. They made a pact with a demon king to secure a place to call their own.
Then, in the Chakrabarthi Divine Era when magic came back to the world, the Dark States were reformed, the magic gathered into a miasma.
The miasma would occasionally lead to people being born with extraordinary abilities. Those gifted with such skills would always be welcome among the ranks of the Dark Irregulars.
A person with the ability to control gravity, a power that neither magic nor science can explain. In other words, a superpower.
They were unmatched as warriors (since nobody can resist the power of gravity), but they were also often employed on large construction sites. They were exceedingly rare on Planet Cray.