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Friv
Essence 6
Essence 6
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Derelict, Part 4 (Scary Story Month Climaxes)

19 Oct 2007, 14:47

Makar’s daiklave cleared its scabbard with a single stroke, and he stepped between the four undead and the remains of his patrol. “Gallen, Kaltos, take the woman and run. I will cover your escape.”

“But we can’t…” Gallen broke off at the harsh look that his commander shot him, and nodded. “Yes, sir.” Without further comment, he and Kaltos started edging towards the door. The creature laughed maliciously.

“There is no purpose. You cannot escape my wrath, no. You will all die, and then you will join me. Yes, it will be glorious. Yes.”

Makar frowned at the Dragon King, his sword slicing out at a zombie that started to shuffle close, severing its left hand. It staggered backwards in confusion, rejoining the others, as Makar’s patrol circled towards the engine bay door. His eyes narrowed, the Essence of Earth flickering around him as he called upon his Charms. “A ghost that can possess inhuman corpses? I didn’t know that was possible.”

“There is much that you do not know, Dragonling.” The mouth of the Dragon King moved in a hideous parody of a laugh. “Or you would never have come here.”

Makar glanced over his shoulder, as Gallen and Kaltos slipped through the doorway, flanking the scientist. “You left her alive as bait.”

“Indeed.” The creature nodded vigorously. “I required eight deaths, to complete the Symphony. This… thing…” It broke off distastefully, gesturing down at the Dragon King’s corpse it wore. “…its soul fled before I could seize it. I could not use it. And so there were not enough crew. It was very problematic, after waiting for so long, yes. But I let one live. The Whispers did not understand, but I understand. I understand my purpose.”

Makar shook his head, taking a single step backwards towards the door. In perfect harmony, all four of his opponents took a single step forwards, and he frowned. “Death to unleash another of the Anathema. I understand all of that, but how…” He broke off, and nodded grimly. “You are the ghost of the man who once served that demon soul.”

“Close enough for your understanding.” The Dragon King laughed again. “You are very observant. But you are also boring me.” It gestured, and the zombies ran forwards as one, flanking the monster in their midst.

Essence coiled around his blade as Makar ducked and spun, his daiklave cleaving through a zombie’s chest and an engine coupling in a single brutal stroke. The energy animating it collapsed from the severity of the blow, and it tumbled to the ground even as the other two swept in to claw at him. Backing up to the doorway, his blade held out defensively, Makar turned aside their claws, returning a riposte that stabbed through the second zombie’s head – and then the Dragon King struck, its fist coming around like a sledgehammer. Smashing through his guard, it sent him staggering into the wall.

“I have spent centuries perfecting my arts, Dragonling. Trapped here alone, in the darkness.”

“You are nothing. A ghost.”

“Then why are you the one injured?” The creature laughed harshly, driving in again. Rolling under its outstretched arms, Makar leapt to his feet and braced against the rumbling engine, spinning to slam his daiklave into the beast’s back. It hissed with rage, its claws parting the steam as it struck back. Makar dove to one side, and the creature’s powerful strike tore through more conductor cable.

As he turned, the last zombie leapt for Makar’s back; he dropped down, desperately feeling the creature’s foul claws caress his cheek as they passed, and stabbed upwards with all his might. The last zombie, unable to stop, drove itself through the blade, cleaving itself in half. Makar started to smile, but then the steam parted again as the Dragon King grabbed his ankle, swinging him around into the machine with a resounding crash. His daiklave skidded away as Makar staggered to his feet. He could feel blood running freely down his cheek, and his leg felt like it was on fire.

The Dragon King stepped forwards, then staggered and looked down in confusion, seeing the mess of muscle that made up the remains of its own leg. It sighed. “This body is failing, it seems. But it matters not. You are weak, and I am unhurt beneath the flesh.” As it spoke, the corpse of the Dragon King collapsed backwards, leaving a faintly glowing outline of a human standing in its place. “I can strike you, Dragon. You cannot strike me.”

“Are you sure?” Makar grabbed a length of pipe, slamming his hand into the base to knock it free, and swung around at the ghost. It laughed, letting the weapon pass harmlessly through its body, and retaliated. Claw-like fingers stabbed into his chest, puncturing jade and drawing a gout of blood.

“I am sure. There is nothing left to save you.”

“That’s true.” Makar dropped the pipe, using it for balance. “But I know something that you do not.” The room was filled with billowing steam, and his expression was unreadable in the fog. The creature frowned, pausing in its assault.

“And what, exactly, is that?”

“Wayfarer engines use pure Essence reactions. And if those overload, the explosion will harm spirits as readily as flesh.”

The spirit paused. It turned to the rumbling, rocking engine. It started to scream in frustration and rage.

And then the ship exploded, and both the spirit and Makar were no more.
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BrilliantRain
Essence 8
Essence 8
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Re: Derelict, Part 4 (Scary Story Month Climaxes)

19 Oct 2007, 22:45

"I have to admit it, you're better than I am."
"Then why are you still smiling?"
"Because I know something you don't know. The engine is about to explode."
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Epiphany
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Re: Derelict, Part 4 (Scary Story Month Climaxes)

29 Oct 2007, 18:42

BrilliantRain wrote:
"I have to admit it, you're better than I am."
"Then why are you still smiling?"
"Because I know something you don't know. The engine is about to explode."


I had the SAME thought, actually.

Yeah, that was a good fight. And pretty creepy to boot! Well written, Friv. But man, our hero died. :(

The question remains as to whether or not that's an end to all the evil or not, though. I'm waiting to see if the rescued chick turns out to be the secret monster in disguise.
BrilliantRain: There are those who would note that sometimes, sometimes, you get the things you really need instead of the things you deserve.
Kailan: If people only ever got what they deserved, the world would be a more miserable place.

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