Wiseman ran his palms over the crystal ball, and through it revealed the goings on in Crescent Valley. What it showed put the court ill at ease; less because a promising general had fallen, and more for the fury it would inspire from their master.
Lord Nihilex did not disappoint, and stormed across the obsidian tiles. They cracked under his feet, and rattled loose the stalactites. His bellows carried through the tunnels, and into the mouth of the Abyssal Realm.
“Of all the clumsy, inept sycophants to march through these halls, this one grates me the most!” he roared. “To think that I had hopes for Curs’tac, picking off the entire Fang Force one by one, only to be betrayed by his own foul smell!”
The absurdity was too much, and prompted the shadow conqueror to kick over a table, then the candle holder, and to brush all the cups from a nearby table. His servants, and his children, cowered in his wake. To even breathe out of turn might set off a chain reaction they may not survive.
“I’ll instruct our next generals to shower, Father,” Vultera said. The harpy shook so much that a rain of feathers fell from her body. Continue reading “Fang Force #29 – “Shell Shock: The Indestructible Foe” (Part 5)”
Though Drake was at rest, he was anything but restful. He twisted in his sleep, kicking off blankets one second and grabbing for them the next. Pain coursed through him while his body slowly stitched itself together.
Cassius sat at his bedside, never once looking away. He reached for Drake’s jacket, which had fallen to the floor, and pulled it back over the wounded vampire’s chest. The green, vegan leather was smooth to the touch, but lacked the earthy smell that was part of its character. All Cassius could smell was the garlic, onions and spices so liberally applied to the curator’s meatballs. Who would have thought that mere foodstuffs could make him so pitiful.
Spike balanced on the bed rail and applied a washcloth to Drake’s forehead. She fretted, fiddling with tiny claws. “I hope the others are alright,” she said.
“They will be,” Cassius said. “They’re strong, and Lindsay’s there.”
The little bat flapped and whined. “But-but there’s only three of them, and-”
“Curs’tac is a dangerous enemy, but worrying isn’t going to help. We have to trust that they’re strong enough to handle the situation.” Continue reading “Fang Force #28 – “Shell Shock: The Indestructible Foe” (Part 4)”
The caves growled and the wind like teeth pressed into the monsters from behind. Even Curs’tac, indestructible as he was, hesitated when drawing closer to the throne. He took refuge behind Fantom, whose advance continued.
“You must be out of your mind,” the creature said. “Y-you pulled me away without orders. Victory was in our grasp! I’ll make sure he knows it was you! I’ll make sure he has your head!”
Were there eyes behind his mask Fantom might have rolled them. It was not uncommon for would-be generals to prattle with bravado, but this one was particularly grating.
“I have called you here for a purpose,” he said.
Stalactites trembled, and the ground cracked. Greater than the draw of the Abyssal Realm was the presence that loomed at its mouth, hanging in the darkness. The shadow conqueror’s bellow gripped at the tar covered things the monsters called hearts.
“AND WHAT PURPOSE MIGHT THAT BE!”
It was not a question; it was a challenge, and one that only a fool would take upon themselves. Lesser creatures had known oblivion for speaking out of turn. Was now the time for Fantom? Continue reading “Fang Force #27 – “Shell Shock: The Indestructible Foe” (Part 3)”
Though arguably without sentience, the flora of Crescent Valley’s botanical gardens cowered under Curs’tac’s unholy presence. No daffodil was safe, and the lilacs shivered; even the blades of grass curled before he’d the chance to squash them. Unlike the human park-goers they were unable to run, nor were they able to scream.
The monster cackled, savoring the terror in the air. Lord Nihilex may have been less than enthused by his arrival, humanity’s welcome more than made up for it. He snapped his pincers in delight, threatening to bisect all who stood in his way.
“This is too easy,” he laughed. “How did this pathetic dimension manage to resist us for so long?”
“You want a demonstration?”
They appeared as if from nowhere; five costumed heroes, each wearing the color of their sigil and garbed with a red cape over their shoulders. Falling behind the avatar of the bat was the wolf, beetle, spider and mountain lion; they were night’s defenders, and guardians of the innocent.
“Fang Force,” Curs’tac hissed. The monster lunged, and the group darted away from his snapping limb. Continue reading “Fang Force #26 – “Shell Shock: The Indestructible Foe” (Part 2)”
Lord Nihilex stared at the wall opposing his throne. Its blackness seethed and drank the wind through the passageways. Its thirst was eternal; such was the nature of the Abyssal Realm – desperate for substance, all consuming; so desperate that it churned creatures from nothingness to act on its accord.
The void was known by all. Those with young imaginations often stared into it when the light left them. What monstrous conjurings they projected onto that canvas took form at the portal gates, the shape of which he could never predict. So far, however, all had failed to serve their purpose.
Both he and the Abyss stared without eyes, daring the other to blink. How deep did the darkness run inside the shadow conqueror’s chest? Deeper, he thought, than the farthest corners of the realm. He growled, casting his thoughts further, until…
His goblet clunked against the stone, staining it with drink. Feareus and Vultera stumbled to retrieve the cup, bickering over which of them would hold it and fill it.
“What a pathetic display,” Lord Nihilex sneered. Continue reading “Fang Force #25 – “Shell Shock: The Indestructible Foe” (Part 1)”