Kur part 2; Lord of Light

All Rights Reserved ©

The new flesh

The head was shriveled and looked worm eaten, it’s hair knotted and dirty. The eyes rolled lazily like a corpses but then sprang to life and focused on Miach. “Father” the inhuman voice croaked from the dry dead lips of the head of the once and never king. “Why have you forsaken me?”

Miach said nothing, frozen in unrelenting fear.

The head’s cold eyes scanned his creator and then behind him to the tank of the strange liquid.

“You have another? Is that it?” The head screeched shrilly.

The strange being lunged at the tank with a madman’s strength, tossing it onto its side shattering it.

Miach scuttered away from the growing pool of magical substrate. The body that was inside toppled naked and lifeless among the liquid and broken glass and old books on the floor.

The helpless scientist gawped open mouthed as the fire climbed the walls. His strange creation lurched over him shaking like a leper; its eyes wide and soulless. It held its head out gripped by the hair, Close enough for Miach to smell it’s putrid breath. Close enough for Miach to see its blackened gnashing teeth and vile grey gums getting closer to his eyes.

Miach’s breath froze in his lungs he knew he was about to die but he could not close his eyes. He sat unmoving as if an observer in his own absurd death. Killed by his own creation.

A moment passed and the scientist noted that he was still quite alive. The expression of the disembodied head of Nuada was gurning oddly as if trying to soundlessly chew words. It’s eyes rolled into the back of its head.

As Miach’s eyes adjusted he noticed a strange metal rod protruding from both temples of the thing. The picture becoming clearer as he broadened the scope of his vision.

Standing over him was another figure now, a tall naked figure, glistening and beautiful. It’s long wet white hair shone like spun silk and it’s physique was youthful and perfect.

It had skewered the imposter on the long thin spear it held in one hand. The man raised the spear so he could better look at the head, holding it in front of his face. A twisted blasphemous reflection of his own visage. The true Nuada.

With one slight flick of its wrist the man dislodged the head tossing it into the growing flames. Flames fed by years of Miach’s research and tomes containing all his blasphemous knowledge.

The creatures body sagged and it too toppled onto the flames where it belonged.

Miach looked up in disbelief at the figure that stood over him.

He gasped “I-is it really you?”

-

An eternity as Bres stared into a starless void. How long had he been here? Where was here? Who was he in this place? Shapes started to appear out of the inky blackness.

Shapes alien and familiar, bread and fish, a knife and fork. Then he saw his own face towering over him one hundred feet tall. The face seemed all the more hideous like that, the boils and scars seemed like cyclopean craters on the side of the moon. What a piteous thing he thought to himself.

The giant that was him seemed frozen in animal terror, it’s face twisted by nameless fear.

Across from the giant reflection an infinite shadow stretched up into the void and became one with it. Or perhaps it was the void itself taken shape. Stygian tendrils writhed without animous like the rays of a black sun and projected across the table.

The thing at the centre of the mass of writhing ghostly appendages was barely humanoid. Only visible was a blackened maw of wet looking tentacles and two burning yellow eyes.

The tentacles wormed their way over to the giant projection of Bres, frozen like a prey animal under some form of venom or suggestion. The octopus like being wrapped it’s viscous black tendrils around the reflection of Bres. Slowly engulfing and swallowing him.

He the tiny Bres was helpless but to watch as his leviathan doppelganger was devoured right before his eyes.

Then the sticky tendrils retracted leaving a slick blackened copy with the same yellow eyes in its place.

Bres awoke from his dream in his cabin aboard the doomed magical vessel that had taken him to this accursed place. Now headed for the dreaded Tory isle, home of his blackmailer; Balor.

There was no sweat as he remembered he was underwater, but still there was a sickly unease and his skin felt static and almost alien to him.

Bres took a panicked moment to look about himself to make sure he was still in tact. Noting the smallest of marks on the underside of his arm, just above the elbow. It looked almost like a birth mark that had been there all his life but Bres could not recall such a mark.

It was black and shaped crudely like a crescent moon, almost like the mark on the ring his mother gave him.

Bres regarded it curiously, it was tender to the touch and to do so illicited a strange cold sensation.

Suddenly a pain like none he’d ever felt surged through his arm and spread like icy fingers through his body. The mark grew in the blink of an eye. He watched in horror as the black tendrils from his dream spread under his skin and began to swallow his whole body. His sheer animal terror muffling his scream.

Again he awoke and feverishly checked his arm for the mark in his dream but no mark existed. Not on the skin anyway. But the former king felt changed somehow as if someone else were wearing his skin.

The feeling though odd, also felt good, as if there was less weight on his bones, he felt more sure of himself somehow. He knew that when he arrived on dreaded Tory isle that the mighty Balor would bow before him and once again he would be king of Inish Vale.

-

The battle raged outside Miach’s castle. The waves of the imposters ramshackle army crashed against the mighty immovable rocks of the firbolg and Ogma.

The warriors cut down scores of them, but they were endless.

Ogma’s breath burned in his chest, his armor felt heavier with every blow, his weapon dipped and sagged and swayed. He could not surrender, he would die here on his feet and still fight until his bones were dust. None of the warriors that day could fathom his devotion. Not even Cur who fought for the pleasure of cleaving a man’s skull in twain. Strung along by petty impetus only as an excuse for some vengeance long since dead.

Ogma would die here and regret nothing. His death was here, he felt it pressing against him like raven claws clutching at his shoulders ready to lift him from the battlefield.

He slew two more soldiers parrying with his club crushing their helmets like egg shell. Another larger soldier with a great two handed sword swung madly and carelessly. Maybe an hour ago Ogma would have easily parried the large clumsy blade, he saw so many openings to attack pass him for sheer exhaustion.

He glanced quickly over at the firbolg, the revenant hadn’t slowed at all in fact he seem more deadly than ever. A blood drunk beast in human form, more hate than man.

The moment lasted too long and as if in a dream the blade of the large sword swung like a pendulum towards his head.

Ogma fell back onto his heels, the blade just hitting the cusp of his helmet, shattering the battered thing.

Ogma doubled back, the cold mountain night air all around him hitting him like a bucket of ice dropped onto his head.

He lost his footing, tripping over a body of a fallen warrior already covered in snow. Falling into a pile of fresh corpses. He looked up helplessly as the warrior that had felled him stood over him leering. His sword held high as if he intended to carve the moon. The blade glinting like a tarnished hand of a clock striking midnight. Chiming the champions doom. He could see it moving slowly like a bird gliding torturously towards his eye, unable to move or lift his club.

He looked over once again at the barbarian lost in blood, wading in it like a river of milk. He knew he would not come to his aid. He would die here after all.

All he could do was watch as the blade descended cutting through the air as slow as if it were cutting through cheese.

He couldn’t take his eyes off of it. He watched as it ticked down towards him, to the time of his death.

His eyes closed for a momentary flash of the blade, a sudden spark of lightning, he closed his eyes tightly averting his gaze from his own doom.

All he could feel was the biting cold wind of the mountain whistling up the devil’s ladder.

“You may open your eyes champion of the tuatha” a silken and familiar voice said.

Ogma obeyed the strangely soothing voice. “Am I dead, is this magmel?”

“Not yet my champion, rise and greet a new dawn, I have need of you once more!”

Ogma opened his eyes wider than ever before but still they could not take it in.

The enormous blade was stopped by a delicate and thin piece of silvery metal floating above his head.

A silver spear held in a slim white hand. The figure was tall and wrapped in a singed tapestry, his hair long and white. Eyes burning a pale yellow like the sun.

The soldier dropped his sword and cowered away from the shining man both out of fear and respect.

“Nuada?” Ogma whispered to himself.

The figure turned “It is I” he turned to the battlefield, who’s eyes could not help but be transfixed by the man. “I HAVE RETURNED AND I AM PERFECT ONCE MORE!” he cried out jubilant.

At once the soldiers dropped their arms to kneel before the risen God king. All but one band of bandit peasantry who scoffed.

“’Oohs this then? Nuada? Ow manys this now? It’s bollocks, why should we believe a word you say?”

The other bandits jeered and roared in agreement.

Nuada looked over at them curiously as if examining some insect that had crawled up on a slice of bread. The king said nothing. He merely lifted the spear and seemed to whisper to it. Instantly the spear took flight on its own, moving so fast it could barely be recognised by the human eye.

In a moment the bandit was cut down, as if stung by an invisible bee that delivered a deadly poison. The deadly bee swimming in and out of each bandit sewing a bloodless trail of death through the dissenters until all were silenced.

The spear returned to its masters hand without a mark or a splash of blood on it. As perfect as the day it was forged by Danu herself.

“A spear?” Ogma sputtered.

“A gift from Danu”

Ogma thought for a moment and then he remembered “The princess?”

Nuada turned to the champion, his eyes filled with mirth and sorrow. “She is with Danu, she is home.”

“I failed her. Just as I failed you”

“Yet here I stand, because of your doing, you remain the champion of the tuatha”

“What of Miach? What of my prize?” the firbolg grunted.

Nuada raised his head to look upon the ghoulish barbarian donned in milk white blood. “Your prize rests in the tower” he said pointing at Miach’s observatory which was entirely engulfed in flames. The flames belching and exploding violently as it devoured his many eldritch potions and poultices.

“Then there is nothing more for me here.”

Nuada looked at the barbarian and after a moment said “As you wish”.

Continue Reading Next Chapter

About Us

Inkitt is the world’s first reader-powered publisher, providing a platform to discover hidden talents and turn them into globally successful authors. Write captivating stories, read enchanting novels, and we’ll publish the books our readers love most on our sister app, GALATEA and other formats.