Disclaimer: I still don't own anyone, and neither should Vince, but I have no power of that, sadly.

A/N: Ok appology time.

I am super sorry it has taken so long for me to get this last part of my story up. I had the mother of all blocks with this one. I just could not find the right way to frame the last part of this story. I mean honestly ya would think if I know how the story was to go, I would have no probs writing it out. But Noooooooo. lol

Anyway I finaly figure it out. It's not how I envisioned in my mind, but it seemed to work once it was down. I really hope ppl like it, at least those still reading this thing. LOL

I want to thank, as always, all those that have been reading this tale, and those that have chosen to give me feedback. Thank you thank you thank you.

Just a note, there is some latin in this. I don't know latin, or its gramma so for those that do, sorry for botching the langauge.

Now on to chapter 25!

"Damn it Mark! Can't you get your directions straight for once! We're in the wrong damn spot…AGAIN!"

It has been several minutes since the young man, few would recognize as Matt Hardy, spoke those words. In that time many more had followed, all at a very high decibel and all directed at his very large companion. Whom had yet to move an inch from the spot he had appeared, seemingly willing to allow his young travel partner to rant himself out, before responding. Secretly he was glad for the depth of the cloaks hood, as it hid the amused smirk that has settled nicely upon his visage. Finally Matt sat heavily on the burnt hood of an abandoned Corolla, his arms folded over his chest as his eyes bore into the larger man before him, as if he was going to rip words from him with the sheer force of his will.

"Ah good, I see your done," says the large man as he casts the hood of his cloak back, revealing the stark features of Mark Calaway, "I was wondering if you would suck up all the air from the area just so you can remind me I have a bad sense of direction." Tossing his pack near where Matt had slammed his down the elder man walks off a bit into the field of debris looking about, "Well we are not that far off, just about 6 miles I'd say." Eyes, that at times are a striking pale green, but at the moment sit somewhere between hazel and non-descript, roll as he hears the young man off to his right draw in breath, the prelude to another heated tirade. This was becoming a routine with the two of them. Mark would miss the area they were seeking and Matt would rant for about an hour about how bad his sense of direction was. Then they would head right back into the Darkside for another stab at getting it right. After the last try even Mark was getting ready to kick his own ass.

In all honestly, Mark knew that Matt was angrier that they had to leave the Darkside when they did this time. He could hear the worry and concern in the boy's voice and hear it in his thoughts. For the record, he too was less then happy about the timing of their departure, but there was nothing he could do; they had to leave when they had to leave. Syreeta and the others would have to hold on for now, he desperately hoped they could, till he and Matt could return to finish what they started there. "Look Matt I'm worried about them too, but there's nothing we can do about it now." He walks over and sits besides his young friend, "She's one smart kid and the rest know their stuff, we made sure of it, they can hold out till we get back." He stands and gives the boy a friendly shove that sends him off the car hood, "Besides whatya doinin mooning over my future queen?" He nearly laughs at the incredulous look the young Hardy shoots his way, till his eyes go wide as the young man launches from his sitting position on the ground where he landed directly at Mark's chest sending the two of them crashing to the ground.

"Future nuthin old man. Me and her are getting hitched," says Matt nicely perched on Mark's chest, "but you can marry Korgel, she's more your speed." Mark's mouth drops open in shock as he stutters out, "What the hells wrong with you boy, Korgels a damn dark dragon." Matt just smiles demonically as he leans down closer to Mark's face, "Yeah you two should hit it off great she's a big ancient dragon and you're a big ancient ass." The outraged look on Mark's face is more then Matt can take and he falls over laughing hysterically, a laugh soon joined by the hoarse laugher from his friend.

The laughter last for a few seconds before Matt sits forward bringing his feet under himself to gaze on Mark who is also gathering himself to a more comfortable position on the rubbish strewn ground. "Ya know Mark, I never thought I would meet anyone like her in my life." He sighs as he picks up a small jagged rock and sends it careening off the twisted metal door of a nearby refrigerator, "Ya know how it is being a wrestler and all, the kinda girls we meet or want to meet," he chuckles a bit as Mark smirks, "Yeah ok, it's not just the girls, we aren't known for being all that picky huh? Still, when I think about my relationship with Amy, and how that ended, then all the stuff that came after…" shaking his head and smiling ruefully, "Guess what I'm sayin is, its hard to believe I could find someone that good and strong and would put up with me, like she did." He looks back at Mark who's visage is as unreadable as it can ever get. He knows Mark's not the place to find answers of this nature, not now, so he quickly changes the subject.

"So 'Wrong-way Calaway' is it back to the Darkside or do we do it the way normal, mundane, humans do it and walk?" Mark smirks as he rises, holding out a hand to the younger man helping him up. He knows Matt changed the subject for his sake and he would not waste that altruistic gesture. "How about we walk. I think we both can do with some time away from the Darkside." He walks over grabbing his pack and tossing Matt his, "Besides, I don't think I can open the portal to the Darkside this close to my destination." At these words the younger man glances over to Mark as he grabs his pack slinging it over his shoulder, making sure to settle it in a comfortable spot; he had learned a pack could become a very big burden if you don't carry it right.

Looking at the man he has come to consider his closet friend and companion it took Matt no time to see a change in him; something was different. "Mark what's wrong?" Waking over he sets a hand on his large travel companion's arm, drawing Mark's eyes down to him, the look in them cause the young man to step back a few steps as a long forgotten dread of the man seizes him suddenly. Now he is certain there is something very very wrong. It's been nearly a year since he has been afraid of this man, he wonders what was it about that look that brought that back.

"Um…Mark, you going to tell me what's up, or do I have to guess?" Regardless of the cold feeling in the pit of his belly, Matt was not going to give in to, whatever it was that has him wanting to run as far from Mark as possible. This man has been there for him over and over, and he was not about to abandon him to a faceless fear, even if that faceless fear had a face. "Come on, stop with the look and tell me what's preventing us from taking another jump?" He leaves off the unsaid words 'besides your bad sense of direction'; he did not think right now was the time for that sort of humor.

The larger man, for his part, bites back the retort to those unsaid words, as he too agrees this was no time for humor. "Sorry, it's nothing, lets go we have a long walk." With that he also shoulders his pack and starts walking across the field, not looking back as he knows the Matt will follow, as he has for sometime.

"Strange kid. Never thought I'd come to feel so comfortable around anyone outside of Glen," Mark thinks as he threads his way around broken glass, busted and burnt automobiles, and various other caste off representation of human waste. "Yeah there's Ron and the others, but I never, ever, felt this relaxed. It's like I've known this kid all my life." He allows himself a slight glance to his left, not surprised to find Matt had already caught up to him. In that quick glance it hits the large man how relaxed and comfortable Matt is with him as well. "Not long ago he'd be like all the other young guys, too nervous to talk to me directly, never look me in the eyes for long unless it's for some dumb ass segment. It's kinda nice to have a new friend someone I can be totally open and myself with." Mark turns as if looking off into the distance to hide the pleased smile that he can't stop from appearing.

Matt absently wonders what Mark is looking at but shrugs to himself when Mark returns his attention on the path before them. "Hey Mark, you still have not told me what it is we are getting." Mark groans inwardly, as the kid asks this question on a regular bases, even thought Mark has made it clear, by not answering mind you, that it was not a subject he was prepared to indulge in. Still, they were getting close, he could feel it, it would be unfair to keep Matt in the dark any longer.

Spying a road not far off Mark veers their path in that direction, as he contemplates how best to answer Matt's question knowing no matter how he does it, Matt's not going to be happy. Sighing as they reach the road and he stop to get his bearings, he casts a look down at the young man before speaking. "I have no idea what it is I have to get," he said as he began to stride purposefully northward along the dirt road, "All I can feel is where its at. I'm not even sure what I have to do to gain it." He can hear the frustrated thoughts coming from his smaller companion. "Matt please, this is not easy on me either. I'd also prefer to be back in a WWE ring or, better yet, home with my wife and children alive."

He did not mean to say that. He stopped in his tracks unable to set foot in front of the other, as his words brought it all back to him once more. The loss, the pain, he feared if he moved right now, he would fall apart into a million pieces.

"Their gone, and I can't change that." The whispered words are nearly inaudible to the young man at his side, as Matt had moved closer to Mark seeing him stop, a mask of concern plaster over his face. This is not his first experience with Mark being overtaken by the realization of his loss, many a night he would sit as Mark would stop mid-sentence as something said or seen brought it all crashing back down on him. He learned quickly there were no words he could say to bring the large man out of his fugue; at least none Matt could come up with. This was where Glen would always be missed. He had a way of bringing Mark out of his thoughts, as Matt had witnessed a few times before the quartet had separated. It is these times he missed both Glen and Jeff. As close as he and Mark had become, due to their multiple trips into the Darkside, he was still an outsider to the pain that came with being Mark Calaway. So he knew all he could do was stand besides Mark as he stood staring off into the night, the same words whispered to himself over and over again. Providing a silent, but tangible, supporting presence for the big man.

An hour or so later, Mark and Matt were once more on their way. Matt had received the usually terse 'thank you' Mark would always award him after these episodes. The young man no longer expected more from his friend, it was hard enough on the man to admit he could lose control that way, another for him to have another witness it. The fact Matt would say nothing during or after the episodes on the subject, treating them as if they never happened, was the a clear sign the young man had come to understand Mark better then he had in the past.

Not that there were not more layers to the man. After the time he has had to spend with the man that once was a huge enigma to many of the boys, the young man knew that none of them knew the true depth of complexity that comprised the Deadman. Just the nickname he had cultivated early in his career said much about him, yet did not even touch on the elements that made that name so fitting. Matt even wondered, at times, what it was about him that even suggested to the older wrestlers of the past to even label Mark in that way. From the stories he had heard from guys that had known Mark early on, he was not really that reserved a person. Not like he became later, not like he was now. And he still was, somewhat, a mystery to the young man. One Matt hoped to one day solve.

For now that mystery had to wait in line for more important things, such as getting to their final destination and Mark fulfilling his assigned task; something Matt felt was fast approaching.

Mark would have confirmed Matt's suspicions. That is if he had the ability to do more then move, with increased haste, in the direction of his destination. At this point Mark could not hear Matt's thoughts, or his, increasingly, concerned voice. All that reached him was an insistent call. Not one of words, but one that seems to seep into his soul. It tugged at ever fiber of his being, nearly rendering the large man, nothing more then an ambulatory automaton. Mark could not turn from his current path, nor could he converse with his young companion, if for no other reason then to easy his concerns. At this point Mark barely retained any sense of who he was, where, or with whom he walked. None of that was important. What was important was the driving need to arrive at his destination.

Matt was starting to panic. He had never seen Mark like this, he was unresponsive even shoving the young man away when he tried to restrain or slow him down. Matt was growing hoarse yelling for Mark to slow down and talk to him. Something had a grip on his large friend and he could do noting to prevent this mad rush forward. Nor could he get Mark to speak to him, let him know what was happening. If this was the Bearer's compulsion, it meant that Mark told the truth and they were close to the end of their sojourn; or at least the first leg of it. Again Matt wished for the presence of his brother and Glen. With Mark in his current, unresponsive, condition he was not sure what he was expected to do, if there was anything at all.

"Ok Hardy, don't panic," Matt starts to talk to himself, he needed reassurance that he could handle what ever happens at the end of the road, if he did not get his nerves calm he knew he would bolt at the first chance. On the heel of that thought something else occurred to him and he suddenly laughs out loud, not worried it would draw Mark's attention. Here he was, afraid of what was to happened when Mark finally arrived where he was going, when for the last year or so, he had seen and done things no normal human being would have dreamed of. "Dragons, Dark Wizards and Elemental spirits. Swallowed whole, Turned into a dog-thing, and courted by a 10 foot hairball. And I am now scared?" he chuckles in spite of himself, "I survived the Darkside, I doubt I have to worry about anything my own realm can throw at me." He was quick to remind himself that Mark had said that what had to be done required only Mark, it was why they had let Glen and Jeff head back to the arena in the first place. This was all about Mark and whatever it was that Bearer wanted and only Mark could get.

Just thinking about Bearer brings a frown to the young wrestler's face. He always thought he was a fairly good judge of character. There have been rare times when his sense of a person fell through, Amy and Adam where one of those times, and, it seemed, Bearer was on that list as well. True he did not associate with that group often, but the few times when he did, or when he and Jeff had to face Glen in the ring, he was always impressed with Paul's professionalism. He seemed to be ready to talk to all the young rookies and talent. Giving advice, telling road stories making a lot of the new guys feel welcome in the locker room. It was, now, hard to visualize that man and reconcile that image with the one Mark and Glen told stories of; A man that blithely used two young boys for his own evil schemes and plans. At times, when Mark would speak of Bearer, he could hear the pain and bitterness his friend was feeling. Paul, had come back with Mark, when the big man was convinced to return to his earlier persona of the dark Undertaker. Mark had though Paul had put aside his manipulative ways. That he had changed and was willing to mend fences with both his charges. Something Glen fought tooth and nails against. It wasn't until the tragedy and theft and Bearer's willingness to help the two brothers that had convinced the big man that there was a chance that his father had truly turned away from his past ambitions and evil ways. So the betrayal, neither man saw coming, was like a hot iron poker to Mark's gut.

Matt knew Mark blamed himself for the situation his brother found himself in. Mark was the one that spend years trying to convince Glen that Paul was on the up and up. He was the one assured glen, against Glen's better judgment that his father had changed his ways and would help them find the stolen urn, discover why they were both doing destructive things, like the occurrence at the diner on their way to Bearer's house, and locate the person that had murdered Mark's family. It was Mark's need to reunite, what was left, of his family. To bring the only persons left in his lift from his childhood together, to assuage the guilt that was always just hovering on the edge of his thoughts, and emotions. And it was this selfishness, in Mark's mind, that had allowed Paul to lure the two brothers into the trap he had set for them. Well, as far as Matt was concerned, Paul Bearer was going to pay for all the hurt he had brought into the brothers lives. It was a pledge the elder Hardy would see come to pass.

But Bearer and his comeuppance was something for the future, for now, the young wrestler found himself standing in an open field. Nothing could be seen for miles save the tree line off in the distance that seemed to encircle the area. No lights from a house, or city, intruded on this, almost, haunting spot. His eyes seemed to be drawn to the sky above, where the heavens were a display of twinkling stars and a very bright and full moon, a moon that seemed to have settled directly above the long structure with in the field.

A stone archway.

A year ago, seeing a stone archway in the middle of nowhere with, what appears to be, a moon stopped dead in it's travels across the sky from night to day, would have freaked the young Hardy and had him running in the opposite direction. But that was a year ago, and he had done and seen things since that made this sight as normal, as a bird perched on a tree. So all the sight drew from the young man was a slight grunt.

"Ok, so I'm taking it, we are here." It was not a question, clearly, but a statement that lead to the unspoken question of 'what do we do now.' Matt did not expect an answer, so hearing Mark's voice following his statement nearly made the young man jump out of his skin.

Mark had moved closer to the archway, and had settled to one knee, as he has done many times in the past, while in the ring, giving homage to the Urn, or the gathered crowd. Only this time he did not raise one hand as he would in the past, this time he raised both hands, palms up, as if offering something to the archway. With head bowed Mark's voice fills the quiet of the lonely field.

"Tribus…ut ... Ego…Clavis…" his voice is low, and almost guttural to Matt's ears, he realizes this is the moment the past year had been leading up to. Whatever it was Mark was supposed to do for Bearer here, he was in the process of doing it.

"Ut…Mei…Animus…", the words are slow, and drawn out, spoken in a hushed chanting rhythm. As Matt stands back feeling useless at this point, he begins to feel a soft warm breeze flow over his body. The breeze, he realizes, seems to be flowing from the archway itself. The breeze brings with it a feeling that seems to reach to his very soul, a feeling of something ancient, and unfathomable. Of something he is not worthy to be in the presence of, something that is very displeased with his very existence.

"Concedo…Ego…Ut…Expesito…OSTIUN!" The last words Mark bellows as he throws back his head, the breeze now is a gale that drives Matt back several yards, having nothing to latch on to, the young wrestler is at the mercy of a force he has never experience in his young life. A sudden light beam burst from the space within the archway, bathing Mark completely. The light is so bright that Matt is force to turn away and shield his eyes or go blind, not that it matter, for Mark was so engulfed by the light he was no longer discernible as a separate object.

The winds and the light it seems to Matt, last for an eternity, but in truth, the whole event takes up but a span of 15 minutes. But it could have been a lifetime as far as the young man was concerned. He worried what was transpiring with Mark back near the archway, what was the light doing to him, was he still even alive.

Without warning, the wind is gone. Matt had become so accustomed to it that its absence nearly leaves him weak, and with a soul deep feeling of having touched something beyond his kin it was like being in the presence of god and then being thrust away, before really realizing where you where. The feeling is so overwhelming that the wrestler falls to his knees weeping uncontrollably. His mind is in turmoil, his emotions chaotic. If he could think he would know that he is on the brink of insanity and there is nothing to hold on to before he falls over the precipice that a waits.

It is just at the second where his mind is about to break, that everything quiets and a light shines bright in his mind driving the chaos and turmoil away. He knows, once more, who he is, where he is at and why. And he knows the light that has pulled him from the edge of insanity has a name. "Mark?"

"Yeah kid, it's me." Matt looks up, from the ground where he had been huddled in madness, to see his large friend standing over him. He is taken aback by the look in Mark's eyes, there is something there, behind the sharp intense gray-green orbs, something almost freighting. Even the large man's voice seems off to the ears of the young Hardy. There is an echo there of the wind and the light, that makes Matt's mind cringe from examining it. He glances as Mark holds out his hand to help Matt up, it takes several long intense seconds before the young man can bring himself to take the proffered hand and stand, and he quickly removes it once he is on his feet. Something he immediately regrets as he sees the flash of hurt in the older man's eyes. Which causes the young man to silently berate himself for his actions. For letting his fears override his innate knowledge that Mark is no danger to him.

"Sorry, just a little out of sorts. I didn…" he is cut off by Mark shaking his head. "Don't Matt. I can feel and hear. I know you don't mean to hurt my feelings," he smirks a bit, "I'm just glade I still have feelings to be hurt. Was afraid I would not be me after I did what I had to do here." He turns back to look where the Archway stands, or stood. Matt's gasps as she becomes aware that the area which just a few minutes ago, contained the stone archway, now is bare of any structure what so ever. Not even a bare patch gives evidence that anything once stood in that spot. It is at this point Matt comes to appreciate that something monumental was truly in the works. Something he and his brother were fully hip deep in.

Sighing finally coming to terms with the enormity of what Mark and Glen lived with, Matt carefully shoulders his pack once more, pats his large companion on the arm with a smirk. "So big guy, where to next?"

Mark follows Matt's example shouldering his pack and smiles down at his smaller companion. "Head back to Milwaukee." Matt frowns a bit, as he was not expecting to head back there any time soon. "Why are we headed back there? I though we'd be off to the next spot you had to find?"

Mark nods, as he sets out in the direction he hopes will lead to a road that will get them to the nearest town. "Yeah, well, I think I'm going to need some fire power for the next leg of this, which means I will need Glen." The last part was not said without some amount of bitterness. Matt, who had caught up to Mark and his long strides, "I thought they would catch up with us, once they settled things with Vince." He made the statement with confidence till Mark turns to look down at him and he sees the hardness in Mark's eyes. "Something went wrong didn't it?" his words low with dread.

Mark nods slowly, "I think that would be an understatement." He closes his eyes for a second, then opening them revealing a far away look. "If we don't get there in time, neither of us will have a brother by the time all is said and done."

Columbia St. Mary, a very nice hospital with a competent staff. Tonight, in their intensive care unit, three men cling to life. In one of the rooms, a blond haired young man with hints of color throughout, rest in a dreamless state. He is unaware of his surroundings. He is unaware that the dark corners of his room are not unoccupied. He is unaware he is now in grave danger, not from his injuries, but from what waits in the dark.

In the waiting room of the hospital, a large man sits. He is alone now, all have left to return to the hotel, or move on down the road to the next venue. The man sitting knows, nor cares about any of that. He has said nothing since arriving and being lead to the waiting area. He does not know the condition of the two mean he nearly killed. He does not know the condition of the young man he feels responsible for. He does not know that at this moment, a darkness from his past is in the hospital and has nothing but evil and death on its mind.

He doesn't know, that he is the only one that can hope to stop the Darkness that, when done here, is set to cover the world.

There are so many things he doesn't know.

Postscript: Well folks this is the end of book I.

Book I you say? Yeah, while writing this it hit me, this just had to be separated into books. Sorry.

Like I said from the top, this writing thing is not my fortay and might take a long time for me to get through. I hope some poeple are willing to stick with it. LOL

Tiil the next book starts I hope to get to read more great Taker fics from the rest of you writers.

So Keep Um coming.