Maeve had a strange look on her face, and stood up, "Of all the causes of this problem, from mortal shenanigans to rogue Dominators, why do you pick an option as farfetched as an Abomination?"
Purdue coughed, his cheek blushing red either in embarrassment or annoyance, "Great question Melody. My speculations, I fear, are not unfounded."
He fished for an item inside his expansive attire, "Years past, when I was an acolyte under a High Priest of Malakith." Purdue bowed and touched three fingers to his forehead--A sign of obeisance to his god. "I followed a caravan of spice traders down to the lands of Khuresh from our Purgatory Islands. A caravan ten miles long. It was my first missionary journey, you see."
The Dark priest must have seen the frown growing on his face of Maeve, for he hastily continued his story, "During the trip, we were attacked by a monster.... This thing with too many limbs and it was fast. Lightning fast. Most members of the caravan died in the first few minutes."
The Priest paused as if he were reliving a particular frightening memory, as he squeezed his hands tight and his eyes carried a haunted look, "I remember the sequence by which the attack started. It began with missing animals, then the slaves, and when it chose to openly attack the caravan, a wet fog covered the caravan."
The Purdue's voice dropped to a whisper, his shoulders were squared as if he was in a defensive stance, "I and a few others barely survived. Only due to the timely rescue of Dorian The Red--Son Of Scarlet. He granted me a single tooth from that creature."
Purdue drew from his chest a serrated tooth that could serve as a dagger, the tooth was black and carried with it a fishy smell, "Last night. It began to bleed. The tooth"
He brought it out and showed her. Maeve paused as she could see a bead of blood slowly forming on the tip of the tooth. The blood slowly ran down the blade and was absorbed, and it began the circle once more.
"You are confident that this tooth came from an Abomination?"
"I swear on my life. Everything I just spoke was the truth."
"Purdue, this story of yours is.... interesting"
"I know it sounds farfetched, my lady, but I believe this is enough evidence to show a relationship between this crisis and my previous experience. We must evacuate the town."
Maeve frowned, "If your speculations are correct, I fear it could be too late." She pointed outside, Purdue turned, and whimpered.
The town was slowly being covered in fog.
Maeve's countenance changed and she exploded from where she stood. She did not bother opening the doors but blasted through them. The Flowing Rune she kept above with Rowan, had been broken.
so much change. I am becoming new
"Boom.... Boom... Boom."
Rowan heard as much as he felt his heartbeats and all his senses rejoiced. They were powerful, and he had two of them. They felt right.
Two engines of power ran bronze blood through his veins. His hands shook, and he vibrated a little inside the egg. Soon he would be reborn!
He did not have eyes yet, or ears, and his spirit was stuck deep inside his flesh observing the changes happening to him, or he might have seen the shadow over his egg. Or he might have heard it.
Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap
Regolf woke up to the sounds of his sister giggling and his mother singing, for a moment, he thought the events of the past few weeks were just a bad dream, a facsimile of a feverish mind.
His mother was back, oh.... how he missed her.
The days of worries, and long shedding of tears were gone, Steisa had been very naughty, and he had tried his best to keep her in check, he hoped mother would not be angry with him for giving her too much sweets.
He missed her cooking when he came back home, and her songs as she told them stories of their father and his bravery, making him want to grow older and carry those responsibilities.
That was why she gave him the name of his father. Regolf. A strong name. A name that endures.
For a little while, he thought he was capable enough, that slowly he was beginning to fill the massive shoe his father left behind, but the absence of his mother left him bereft, her strange sickness left him confused, and only the thought of Steisa and her wellbeing gave him the strength to carry on.
Perhaps the wise thing he should have done was to tell the adults about what was happening in his home, yet he had felt a strong desire not to. To reveal his sick mother to the world felt painful. His mother was a proud woman and if she knew that the people saw her as feeble or mad it would break her. Regolf was proud he kept it inside the family.
Finally, it seemed his perseverance had paid off, his mother was back to normal.
He opened his eyes to an empty house, the windows, and doors were opened, and a fresh breeze blew into the house, the air smelled like pine nuts and flowers, and his heart beat faster in excitement, was the nightmares over?
The sound of mother and Steisa was coming from outside near the kitchen, he tried to stand and failed the first two times, he assumed it was due to sleeping on the floor, leading to stiffened muscles, but at least he could sit up.
He looked at his legs, but something drew his eyes away, it was Steisa walking inside with a bright smile on her face.
"Sleepyhead, you are now awake! Mama is showing me a magic trick and you have missed a lot. Lemme show you!"
She ran to him and held out her left hand. Her missing left hand, "Mama cut my hand, but it doesn't hurt, it even feels very nice!" She giggled in joy, her laugh increasing in tone and pitch, it almost seemed as if she was screaming "C'mon big brother, you have to try it."
Regolf felt a moment of dissonance, and he nearly went back to sleep because this was a bad dream, and the only way to wake up from bad dreams was to sleep it away until it was forgotten when you woke up.
He felt a sensation in his leg, this time it hurt a little, and he had a feeling of constriction and wetness around his legs, he wanted to look at it, but the crazy laughter from his sister drew his attention.
"Steisa what happened to your hand? Who did this? Where's Mother? Where is she? Can you call her inside the house, my legs are stiff and I cannot stand up"
lightsΝοvelRegolf's panicked voice resounded in the room, his eyes were wide and held confusion and anger.
Steisa recoiled from her screaming brother, she puckered her lips, "Big brother is a meanie, why do you want to push me away?"
As sudden as her laughter, she began to cry. Regolf panicked, consoling and shushing her, telling her everything was okay until she nodded and calmed down.
"Since Big Brother is not pursuing me away, then why did you tell me to call Mama from outside, when she is here with us."
"She is here? Why can't I see her?" Regolf looked around, but he saw no one.
"Silly brother, look at your legs, mama is doing another magic trick." and she giggled.
Regolf rolled his eyes in growing fear and exasperation, Steisa had been bleeding all this while, though very slowly, he needed to get her to the apothecary. He looked down at his legs.
Currently, whatever had been stopping him from viewing it had been shattered by his mounting fear and concern for his sisters' wellbeing. His eyes focused when he saw his legs, he began to scream.
Mother had brought a doll back from the field, the doll was of a girl, with blond hair and sky-blue eyes, Regolf had carried it once and dropped it, the doll felt like holding a person, it was heavier than it looked.
Now that doll was slowly swallowing his legs. Its mouth had stretched until its ears, and It had already worked its way to his knees, and its dead blue eyes were fastened to his face.
As he screamed, those eyes lit up in annoyance.
"Hush dear." His mother walked in holding a butcher knife and the limb of Steisa, "Your baby sister hates to be disturbed when she eats"
At that moment, something snapped inside Regolf.