Dragonhand traded blows with the Infallible Master. The two warriors became immersed in a punch, kick, deflect pattern.
“I am sorry that I failed you, my son,” the Infallible Master said.
“You did fail me,” Dragonhand said as he lunged at the old man. “You held me back.”
“No,” the Infallible Master said as he dodged Dragonhand’s fist. “I failed you for not training your mind well enough to realize that the path you have chosen is one of despair.”
“Despair?” Dragonhand asked as he connected his boot with the old man’s chest, knocking him backward. “This is the path of power.”
“Yes,” the Infallible Master said as he stood up. “But what good is this power when it has twisted you into the angry, miserable wretch I see before me?”
Fists were wielded. Feet were launched.
“You think I am miserable?” Dragonhand asked.
“Look me in the eye and tell me you are not,” the master replied.
Dragonhand looked away. “Bah. You old fool. You speak like you are all-knowing and wise but you’re just an incompetent, ancient buzzard. Give me the Staff of Ages.”
The master held the staff in the air, closed his eyes, and chanted under his breath. The clouds rumbled.
Junjie and Mei-Ling entered the courtyard just in time for a thunderclap to tear through their ears. A bolt of lightning raced out of the heavens and down through the sky. The staff’s ruby absorbed it, turning the staff itself blindingly bright.
“Master!” Junjie cried. A line of zombified warriors blocked the duo from reaching their leader. Junjie and Mei-Ling fought the creatures, as did the handful of tiger claw clan members who were still alive.
The Infallible Master pointed the staff at Dragonhand and zapped him with a furious bolt. It didn’t phase the fiend in the slightest.
“Is that the best you’ve got?” Dragonhand asked as he turned his hand into a tiger claw.
The Infallible Master closed his eyes and started chanting. “Body and mind separate…what was one become two…”
“Your mysticism won’t save you now, old man!”
Thwok! Dragonhand pounded his hand into the Infallible Master’s skull and ripped out his brain
.“Nooo!” Junie shouted as the master’s body fell. The young warrior didn’t have long to mourn as he and Mei-Ling continued to beat back the zombie horde.
“Mmm,” Dragonhand said as he held up his prize. “A thousand year old brain. Aged to perfection.”
Dragonhand chomped the Infallible Master’s brain and threw his head back in delight. “Oh…oh yes…”
He took another bite. “I guess you weren’t that stupid after all, old man.”
It was starting to look like the end for Junjie and Mei-Ling. They fought bravely, but the zombies kept coming.
A familiar voice floated through Junjie’s ears.
“My son,” the Infallible Master voice said. “Tiger claw their brains.”