150 The Final Act part 1

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(General P.O.V)

They had spoken. A mortal with the power to not only ascend to a divine being but also the feel of a Lord of Order and Chaos. A split between them. A true Lord of Balance with a slight lean on the side of sympathetic order more than pure chaotic alignment. 

They had been trying to locate him. To source him out but the enchantments placed upon Aden by none other than Lucifer kept him hidden from their gazes. It kept him safe from their hungry gazes. Until it didn't. It happened without warning. A beacon of high tier power was suddenly revealed. The aura subtle enough to be felt by only the truly powerful yet not diminutive in any way. An accord was reached due to a fear of irrelevance. To maintain their Power and Influence, measures were taken.

Lucifer Morningstar stood on the balcony of his palace, Mazikeen behind him and to the side. His gaze was cast below him, far and wide. At the trillions of demons. Most from different factions of Demon Lords. Time and time again Lucifer contemplated waving his hand and disintegrating everything. But he relented once more. Though different…some had once been his own brothers and sisters. Now the angelic glow had diminished. Changed into something other. Infernal. A demonic heritage that made it seem as if that was all they had ever been.

"Are you sure about this my Lord?" Mazikeen asked formally. Lucifer had stopped concealing Aden's aura. Which would spell unending trouble for the boy she had come to like.

Maze herself was different. Her entire demeanor had changed. Now she was colder and subservient to The Morningstar just like her role dictated. Just like they expected from the consort. Azazel, Astaroth, Belzebub…and many more Hell Lords were always observing. She could feel their ever watchful eyes. Waiting for a slip up to scheme. Of course the schemes would be simple nuisances for Lucifer to deal with but to them every little bit of victory was enough. 

One would have thought that, based on the recent upheaval the dimension had gone through…they would keep their heads down but no. Lucifer was powerful but that didn't mean he concerned himself with the happenings of the realm 24/7. Not to mention that the ancient laws demanded a certain conduct to be observed. It's the way things had been. That gave them enough loophole to push and pull. 

"Are you questioning me, Mazikeen?"

Lucifer's soft voice drifted over to the Lilim who stepped back and bowed. He was dressed in a white suit, his hair blonde and black wings prominent behind his back. This was the persona they knew him by. His presence rippled with a substance beyond mere godhood, beyond conceptual essence. He was the True Archon of power. The shaper of reality. 

"Of course not my Lord. I only aim to serve your wishes." She smiled a little. "And…to counsel you when you request it."

"Mmh." The Morningstar snorted in amusement. 

"I see. And to further extrapolate on your question, Maze…think of this as a test. The final one." He paused, his eyes glinting with a scarlet light. 

"I have never had to lower or debase myself to schemes against those under me, I won't start now." Despite his voice being soft, those meant to hear it heard it and bristled in quiet fury. Lucifer smiled as if he was gazing down at a particularly adorable scene.

"Oh, petty little creatures. You sought that which is not yours to have…and I find myself eager to see how you shall all fare against my pet champion. Should you lose…well then, we shall see just how powerful that small authority you proudly wield measures up to my whim."

Maze straightened up and stared at the back of The Morningstar in fervor. She was already wet. This…this was the real Lucifer Morningstar.

Lucifer's gaze speared through the trillions of beings surrounding one thing. A dome of unbreakable glass and inside that dome…was an angel, glowing with tainted light. His brow scrunched up a little in curiousity.

'What are my intentions? Even I do not know. Have I truly changed this much? Were it my past self…no, I would like to think I've always been fair. I have not changed. My sight has only been opened to the reality I had chosen to ignore. I will do it differently this time. It should provide some entertainment value, I suppose.' He turned his gaze from Alyssa to the direction of the dungeons where a man was chained. A man housing a Rhyming Demon.  

The reason the demons were all gathered here was obvious. After the angel and the rogue Demon had been captured, the princes used the excuse of an iron clad law, Lucifer himself had put up, to demand a live execution of the angel. To show their defiance to the Silver City. He could have simply abolished the law but unfortunately, his own power would rebel against him. Not enough to matter but enough to annoy him. So he made a bet. Aden had better not fail. Or else the lives of Blood and the angel were more than forfeit...their souls were in it for an eternity of torture. 

"I know you have another question Maze, spit it out."

The Lord of Hell addressed the silent consort.

"Not a question my Lord, merely a concern." She swallowed, timing her words carefully. "What if Heaven intervenes?"

Lucifer didn't answer. Instead he slowly raised up his head, followed by a single hand…the index finger outstretched. A pinprick of light exploded out, hitting the ever gray sky of the hell dimension and dispersing.

"They won't. I am the sovereign here. No one may enter unpermitted. The stage is set, it's time for the final act."

(Aden's P.O.V)

A different range of emotions crossed over everyone's faces upon my entry. Every single set of eyes was on me. The League members did not look too happy to see me though. Gee, I wonder why? 

"Watch him."

Wonder Woman gave the order to Aqualad and  The adults all gathered a distance away to have a private conversation. They would probably have sent the junior team and I away from the room if they weren't afraid I would use the boom tube and leave. Whatever assurance that gave them as I could still leave no matter if they watched me like a hawk or not. I stared at how they hurdled together like gossiping cheerleaders and felt like laughing. Would have, if it wasn't for how awkward it was, seeing how eerily silent they were, most probably having a mental conversation. 

I turned to my 5 ex friends/ex teammates. I had a million questions to ask but of course, me being the asshole I was…

"So this is… awkward. How's your leg, Wally?"

I teased. The teen frowned.

"Thanks for reminding me why I hate you."

I laughed, accepting I would probably never make any friends.

"Come on…you know you deserved it. Plus, you got the speed healing thing going on for you, so you're good. Probably."

He looked like he was seconds away from attacking before he sighed and smiled.

"You're a dick you know that?"

That earned him an elbow nudge from Artemis. Those two seemed awfully close. Glad to see she moved on from the one sided crush. 

"I identify as an Asshole, not a dick. There's a difference." I educated him on some 2022 wokeness and turned to arguably the smartest of the team.

"Robin… you've grown taller."

I observed. The still short teen looked me up and down.

"Wish I couldn't say the same for you."

I chuckled. Yeah…I was close to hitting that good old 6 feet. These few months had seen me shoot up like a reed, might be the influence from the Kobra venom or any of my other powers really.

And then my eyes landed on my favorite person in the team.

"Hey M'gann. I missed…"

The sunny Martian interrupted me by flying forward and slamming into me for a hug. I widened my eyes as I felt her warmth against my chest. How…how long had it been since I was hugged like this? The team weren't expecting that either but I didn't really see anyone who looked at the scene with negative emotions. Even Connor had a small smile on his face as he stared at The Martian's back. 

I raised my hands and pulled her tight to me after a few seconds of hesitation. And for a few seconds I felt myself regain a semblance of the belonging, I'd left behind. This is what I'd sacrificed for my ideals. Was it worth it? Yes. But that didn't mean I couldn't miss it. Or that I couldn't get it back again. The faces of Iroh, Saisei, Hakai and Breeze went through my mind. I pulled away, with an even more sincere smile.

"I'm happy to see this world hasn't tainted you M'gann. Your heart will always be your greatest weapon."

She gave a teary smile.

"I missed you. We all did." Her smile dimmed a little. "But I… understand that things are different now. I wish they didn't have to be." She floated back to stand with the team. I swept a gaze through them and confirmed what I was feeling with my energy sense again.

"You've all grown stronger. But Connor you're…a different beast altogether." I complimented.

"You have no idea."

Connor responded, tightening his palm into a fist. I felt my own battle mania surge.

"I wouldn't mind a spar actually."

I told him and he nodded.

"Soon. When there's time."

That fight would be interesting. The last time we had fought he hadn't exactly been himself. The next time we sparred promised to be very fun.

"Hey Archer girl."

I addressed Artemis.

"Hey Air boy." She replied before we both laughed.

"That was so bad. Air boy? Could you come up with anything lamer?"

Artemis rolled her eyes.

"You just caught me on a bad day."

She defended herself.

"Yeah I bet." I snorted. "Good to see you though."

I added after a few seconds.

She smiled sadly at me, fidgeting with her bow.

"Yeah…you too Aden."

"And I think it's time you tell them the truth."

I added telepathically. She looked unsure so I pressed.

"Artemis, you and the team came to MY defense. You really think they would judge YOU if they were willing to go to all this trouble for me? These guys are solid, you've all created something good for yourselves. You belong with them. Believe me."

That finally got me a smile from her and a weird look from Miss Martian. I winked at her and turned my attention to the last but certainly not the least.

"Hello Fearless Leader. You've clearly outdone yourself Kaldur. Mobilizing the team to come to the aid of a villain?… shocking. But thank you."

Kaldur's face had the same calm smile on his face I was so used to. This time however it seemed…somber. Kaldur understood what they'd done. He could see that far ahead which made him the ideal leader. 

"We couldn't stand back and let you be framed wrongly despite our differences. It's not what a hero would do."

I nodded and looked at them all. My emotions were prevalent in my eyes and I made no effort to hide my gratitude.

"Thanks. To all of you. I didn't expect this. I owe you one."

We would probably never go back to where we had been before. That ship had sailed. And I knew we would clash a lot in the future. What I had planned would no doubt put us in opposing sides. But just for the fact that they had tried…I would owe them one.

The conversation was timely interrupted as the League broke off from their own discussion. Wonder Woman stepped up with Batman and Zatara on both of her sides. I idly wondered how professional both had to be to not steal a glance of that ass...(sigh) puberty.

"After careful deliberation and discussion, we have determined that Aden is indeed innocent."

She stated. I frowned in annoyance. Her words grated me. 

"I am sorry for the way we treated you with suspicion Aden."

Atleast she genuinely looked sorry. It wasn't enough to get rid of the little bit of anger at the way she worded her earlier statement but I kept quiet. I was exercising tolerance. It was...hard. And the only reason I was keeping a tight lead on my aggression was because of Iroh's voice ringing at the back of my head. My soul being had constant strain had likely contributed to some of my dumb decisions. This time I wasn't going to be the one to mess this up. 

I spared a glance at The Team and nodded in understanding before turning to Wonder Woman.

"Thanks…I guess, let's just leave it behind us. We have more pressing issues." I sighed, atleast that shit is in the past. "Let's get down to business then. So Batman and I had a few theories. The vine monster's carnage was meant as a way to distract you. While you handled the plant abominations in each of your cities, Jason Blood and I dealt with the one's controlling them." I walked forward to the huge table and looked at Robin.

"Boy Wonder, do you mind pulling up a map of the country."

He shrugged and tapped a button on his holographic wrist computer. 

"Thanks." I told him as a second later a map of the US appeared. I pointed at a spot on Northeastern Carolina.

"Zoom in to this wetland."

The image expanded as the region highlighted became clearer.


Canary called but I raised a hand, distracted.

"Just a second. According to Blood, this swamp is a place full of natural mystic energy. Wotan took advantage of that to boost Poison Ivy's powers immensely while also blending Scarecrow's fear toxin into the bud controlling the plants. In the meantime, Metropolis was left unharmed while Superman faced off against Lobo. By the time I got there…he was seconds away from Killing him. Chances are the reason why Superman went down so easily was because Lobo possessed either red sun tech or a Kryptonian ring. Both things that could be procured by Lex. The goal seemed like to kill him but it was too elaborate, so I'm thinking they needed something else. Probably his D.N.A or something. And it matches up well with what Ultra-humanite told me. Vandal Savage's immortal body is failing him. He's dying. This could be the last chance… "

"That's enough."

Batman cut me off and I turned to face him in confusion.

"What do you mean?"

A silent talk went on between Wonder woman and Canary. The latter was stuck with the duty of telling me why they all suddenly looked sus.

"The Justice League will handle the Light… without your help."

"What?" I couldn't believe what she was saying. I held up a hand.

"Wait…wait lemme just process this." I breathed in.

"So you're telling me…that despite the fact that I've been cooperative…" Even in my growing anger, I could see individual members spread out to the sides, probably expecting a fight. A fight that I wanted to give them more than anything.

"…and open to having a peaceful and levelheaded discussion on how we can handle The Light once and for all…you still stick to the same old stubbornness that got Superman where he is right now. In The FUCKING MEDICAL ROOM!"

"You need to calm down son. Now."

Captain Atom ordered in a hard voice. Green Arrow had his bow in his hands, Hal's ring was resonating with will energy ready to create a construct, Black Canary's shoulders were tense and stiff and I could feel magic brimming inside Zatara. Stewart's body was outlined in a green shroud and the two Thanagarians took to the air. The only one who seemed at ease was Manhunter.They were anticipating a fight. Had expected it. Wow. I glared at Batman.

"This is bullshit and you know it."

Wonder Woman started talking,

"The Justice League was created for one prime reason. To keep the world safe. But we will not allow someone else to fight our battles for us.  The Light is our responsibility, Aden. Let us leave it that way."

My hands tightened into fists so hard, that I felt the nails dig into the flesh of the palm.

"Do you also agree with that?"

My question was directed at Batman. The Dark Knight's gaze was unwavering as he answered me, not even pausing for a second.

"Yes. But not for the reasons you think. I had a talk with Iroh and while most of what he said would need a second reliable source to verify, I can confidently say that you're trying to do the right thing. You can't help it, Aden. For some reason, this responsibility to bring balance to the world is on your shoulders."

Some of them stirred in place. Seems like Bats hadn't told them everything. Uncaring of that fact, the Gothamite continued. 

"But this is our world. We get a say. And your current methods will not suffice for an encounter with The Light. With anyone really. The League didn't kill when I was in it…they are not going to start now, for any reason."

His words didn't do anything for the anger and indignation I felt.

"I never stated I would go for the killing blow. I am not a murdering scum. Extreme measures exist for those who will continuously plunge the world in chaos." I swept my gaze to the more 'desensitized to death' League members. 

"Surely you can understand where I'm coming from. Stewart, you have had to kill for the United States Government. How is this any different? And…it's not necessarily killing. I have constructed an impenetrable prison where Supervillains too dangerous for the real world can live out their lives in relative comfort.

Some of them looked curious about that. I doubled down on it.

"Zatara, imagine a world without Felix Faust and his tendencies to bring Demons over to terrorize the planet. Or Green Arrow…how many times have you had to fight and best Meryln only for the people in Star City to suffer each time he makes a comeback." For once Green Arrow looked dumbfounded and contemplative. 

"Flash, I cannot even begin to describe the clusterfuck caused by the Reverse Flash' future or in his case past actions. Almost all the bad choices you make are as a result of your Rogue's gallery's continued aggression. You FUCKED UP the world Barry, with a full system failure in the timeline called Flash point because you couldn't say fuck it and end some of these cruel bastards."

Some of them looked ready to blow. They didn't want to listen to my honest words because of how I distorted their world views. And it was true, I was preaching. The first person to lose control was unexpected though.

"That's taking the easy way. In time, these actions turn you into the same thing you're fighting!"

Black Canary shouted, losing her cool.

Everyone became uneasy. It wasn't easy to set off Canary. My words seemed to have had a major effect on her. She stepped up and placed a slightly trembling hand on my shoulder. Her closeness took me back to the past. When things were different and she was just teaching me how to use my sonic abilities. In her eyes, I could see anger, fear and pity instead of the small smile of pride she used to give me. I hated it.

"How will you stand yourself in the future Aden? How will you be able to look at your hands and not see the blood of those you have killed? Can't you see it will change you!! Make you into something you're not!" Her voice turned soft. "How far can you possibly go before you break? Will you give up everything to save the world?"

"Yes." I answered firmly, without breaking eye contact.

"Why?" Canary asked. I contemplated the question. Thought it through deeper than I had ever thought of something else. And I got my answer. I could have told her my resolve was simply stronger than theirs. That my ideals were something I would die before discarding but I decided not to. It was high time I properly introduced myself. Shrugging off her hand, I stepped back and straightened.

"Because, I am the Avatar, Master of all the elements. My task is to maintain Order and Balance. It's my sole annd only purpose."

I felt a pulse from deep within me as the words rang true through the room. This time I didn't mistake it. My soul had grown stronger. 

A brief silence dominated the room as the League took time to internalize what had just happened. I complimented them inwardly because despite my overpowering presence, they never seemed fazed, still ready for a fight.

The junior team were also in various states of battle readiness. Problem is…I had no idea which side they would fight for. I wouldn't be surprised if they stabbed me in the back despite trying to prove my innocence a few minutes ago. So I did what they weren't expecting. I stood down.

"My time was wasted. But I didn't come here to start a fight. If you truly wish to handle the Light on your own…then suit yourselves. Just stay the fuck outta my way. This is the last time I am ever extending an Olive Branch. One day you shall understand that the League…has outgrown it's usefulness. If it were up to you…it would only be half a million lives to get there." Canary looked as if I'd slapped her.

A boom tube appeared before me and I turned to catch a glimpse of the team. I gave Aqualad a nod that he returned imperceptibly before walking forward, only for someone to stop me, floating down between the Boom Tube and I, blocking my way.

"One last thing kid."

I raised an eyebrow at Hal Jordan, not really in the mood to deal with this clown.

"What do you want now?"

Green Lantern crossed his hands together.

"Superman. How did you heal him? He has been in a coma for the past 2 hours despite being under artificial solar energy emitters."

A reasonable question but I wasn't going to answer him. First, his attitude pissed me the fuck off and second, I wasn't giving up Saisei. No matter what. I looked back at Batman. At least he hadn't betrayed my trust and told them about Sai. 

"Hey, I'm talking to you. Answer my question."

"And I heard you the first time, Jordan. Fuck off, I ain't telling you shit. Maybe put your ring and the extensive galactic knowledge it holds to see what's wrong with him before thinking you can demand anything from me, after the kind of shit you guys just pulled."

Jordan's anger was almost a tangible thing. 

"You fucking brat."

He hissed, his face changing.

"You really wanna do this? You really want to fight me?"

My bullshit meter was now close to 'fuck everything, let's nuke this bitch.' Equity appeared in my hands, buzzing with electric energy. 

"Aden no!"

Miss Martian's voice cut through the din.

"Green Lantern stand down! Hal! Stop this!"

Wonder Woman commanded, her anger getting the best of her. The green and black clad hero threw me another scathing look before flying out of the meeting hall.

"I'll go talk to him." Stewart informed Wonder Woman and followed after his fellow galactic police. 

"You!" The Themysciran princess turned to me. "Leave!"

"Gladly." I snorted. The mood had quickly soured dye to my confrontation with Hal. 

"I will say this though. Just because I respect you, does not mean, I fear you."

And you would think that Fate would let me have that one. That she would be considerate enough to me that I could leave them with that cool line but of course…my life is never that easy. Fate seemed hellbent on making me fight someone. Anyone.  

A yellow Ankh appeared over my Boom Tube and I felt a sudden snap as the energy from my Realm was instantly cut off. I could still make a boom tube but I didn't think it was going to be that easy. Not when this new arrival seemed very interested in meeting me. 

What was even more worrying however was the sudden mission I received from the system. The title read…The Final Act. 


4164 words.

My longest chapter to date. Oh God...my head is buzzing. 

Guys...most of you have expressed the concern that Aden is being too subservient to the League or to Lucifer and in the past that was the case but believe me, it wasn't the case here. He really wanted to coordinate with them and deal with the Light once and for all. With their resources and his bullshit powers, that would have been super easy. Aden can sense out energy signatures, sneak in anywhere due to his invisibility, has a place he can even stash these villains without killing him and he has the advantage of meta knowledge. It's almost perfect. But of course the League wouldn't willingly work with him. One they are stubborn and controlling. They wouldn't let the Junior Team even handle some stuff. Two, they see Aden as a kid and his methods are also very questionable.

This chapter was Aden trying to form a relationship centered on doing what is right. You might feel like he sacrificed his ego but if it could have helped him save people then his ego is a small thing. 

Shits happening on the next chapter and I can't wait.

One Last thing, I want to get better. Thank you for all of your comments.

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