Friday, August 17, 2012

Tribeca: Chapter 11

Aardol flew fast and hard into the blinding light of Dawn's early rays. Ebon lay on the man-creature's back, life returning to him but still very weak. Opening his eyes, Ebon saw the very strong back of a man but sat upon the body of a winged horse. Realizing his charge had awakened, Aardol slowed his pace to reduce the alarm of the boy.
"Greetings Child of Koa, I am sent by your father to find you, for he has need of you." Ebon became alert at the mention of Koa's that he had become accustomed to despising. Ebon knew that he was not on the ground, the creature carrying him was flying, yet he could not tell exactly how high. He did not trust this creature nor wanted to travel with it to see the man who abandoned he and his mother so long ago. Looking below them, Ebon saw an embankment of trees and rocks on a hill, rising above the plains around it. He figured it too far to jump, yet eyed it cautiously as he engaged the man beast in conversation.
"What are you, creature? Many thanks for your aid but I do not wish to accompany you any further."
Aardol laughed. "We are many lengths in the sky. I fear you have no choice but to enjoy the ride. I am Aardol, Avatar of the Earth and of allegiance to your father, King Koa,"
Ebon had heard of the Avatars; beings chosen to harness and wield nature itself. There were always only two in existence at any given time, one of the land and one of the air and they were always at odds with the other. Though they held incredible power, they were mortal and could be killed, though with great difficulty. Aardol continued, "There is much I must tell you of Koa and how he intends..”
Before Aardol could finish his sentence a barrage of spiked objects flew from the treetops of the hill on the plains, piercing, lodging and tearing holes in his mighty wings and lodging themselves in his hide. Aardol screamed in Aguish, rearing up and Ebon all but held on to his tail to keep from falling. Looking down into the direction of the attack, Ebon saw a figure using the trees as a slingshot to launch himself airborne. DaChase’s warlock had followed the direction of Aardol and Ebon and had outpaced them to greet them from an opportune attacking point. Airborne, the warlock launched spiked chains at Aardol that bound his wings and legs. Aardol fell from the sky, with Ebon clinging to him. The warlock, though having had to use other means to launch himself skyward, did not appear to be falling however but walking on air. He moved towards the falling creature, running it through with two long knives through Aardol’s abdomen and neck. The warlock grabbed Ebon, who was still too weakened to fight back, by his collar and the two watched as Aardol crashed into the trees below them.
Ebon did know this creature, this warlock of DaChase, once a man, now a voiceless shadow trained to be an assassin and spy; was one that he had to escape from. Those too long in the presence of the warlock began to fade to shadow themselves. The warlock fed on people, draining their life energies from their bodies to be filled with empty space, to become eventual puppets, death denied to them. They became neither living nor dead, but could be commanded by DaChase with his enchantment of servitude that he cast upon all of his warlock’s victims. Ebon looked again to where Aardol fell. He judged the distance survivable and slipped from his garment that the warlock held him by. Ebon nosedived from the sky towards the trees. The warlock hissed as it began to move to catch him.

The tall witch waited with her horde outside of the castle home of The King of the Azurine Cliffs. She had led DaChase there with his band when he had presented to her the corpse of Wake, the only man who had ever survived combat with her King. She and her sisters and begun to prepare Wake’s body to be burned in offering to her King. As they prepared the pyre, a loud deep laughter could be heard coming from within the castle. DaChase met with and discussed an alliance with the King of the Cliffs and Steridian forest in a contest with King Koa over the rule of Tribeca. The conversation was going well. As the fire was lit, the smoke traveled to Wake’s body, making his nose twitch as he effortlessly undid the ropes that were tied around his once though dead form.