Cur caught the terrible blade in his silvery fist but it was merely a distraction. As quick as a snake bites the ceremonial blade was in Sreng’s other hand and the tip aimed for Cur’s heart. But the Firbolg had fought with Sreng many times as boys and as men and he knew the once champion of the Firbolg was cunning. Every strike was merely an opening for another. Cur caught Sreng’s mighty armor clad wrist and for a time they wrestled, fighting over both blades. Neither giving way to the others strength.
Sreng laughed and let go of his bone blade putting all his strength behind the dagger that would undo the curse on his former king and send him to magmell for eternity.
Cur’s reaction was swift and brutal, instead of dropping the bone blade he remembered it’s unusual properties, it was a sword made of interlocking blades and bones like a spinal column. The Firbolg shook it loose so it became a spiked while and with his silvery hand he wrapping it tightly around Sreng’s neck, the cruel barbs biting into his grey flesh.
Sreng made no attempt to loosen his murderous grip on the dagger aimed for Cur’s heart. His eyes burning with an insane blood lust that transcended death and sanity.
“You left us to die” he croaked maniacally.
“Then die!” Cur mocked as he tightened the blade whip around Sreng’s neck. The barbs cutting deeper into his dead flesh.
The sound of thunder carried over the valley, the sky was slate grey and calm, the morning mists lying on the ground. The sound of the thunder was unnatural and loud and drawing closer. The thunder was the sound of the demon horses hooves beating the ground, drawing closer.
Cur could see it’s red eyes reflected in the silver arm, burning, charging towards them. The giant black horse sent from magmell.
Sreng laughed like a lunatic “I send us both to Magmell this day my king!”.
It was too fast there was no getting out of its way, the two firbolg locked in a mortal struggle would soon see the other side.
The bladed whip in his silver hand, the blessed dagger aimed at his heart in the other and deaths stallion charging his flank.
The horse charging, tearing up the loose earth of Tara suddenly was knocked off course by a large bulls horns goring the devil horse in the side.
The two creatures were locked in a mortal struggle not unlike the two firbolg. The bull with its horns and the devil horse on it side with its mighty hooves kicking at the bulls head.
The horse was wounded but it didn’t flee, driven by an insane rage it kicked furiously and hit the bull on the top of the skull with a sickening crack. The bull fell to it’s side.
The horse hurried it’s feet and cried out as it charged again.
Sreng laughed his choked sickening mockery of a laugh.
Cur grit his teeth and screamed through them as he pulled the sword whip and tore Sreng’s head from his body.
Turning to face the demon horses red stare and frothing mouth, he whipped the bone blade and in strike struck the wicked beasts head from its neck.
It crumpled like a sack of wet bones at the firbolg’s feet and became still.
But the laugh didn’t stop and then a strange feeling, cold. Cur felt lighter for a moment. He saw the dagger in the corner of his eye and Sreng’s headless body driving into his back.
The head on the ground laughing victoriously.
Cur sneeared at the vile lump of flesh. He picked it up and looked into its dull grey eyes.
“The curse is broken, now you will die with us my king”
“You are broken” Cur said as he crushed Sreng’s head to pulp in his silvery fist and tossed what was left of the soggy lumps on the wet ground.
But it was too late, he could feel it, the pain fading, the sky getting closer, closing in. He pulled the dagger from his back and looked at for a moment as if it was the all its fault. He tossed the small thing away as he felt himself slipping as he felt darkness coming.
“The pain, the pain is gone” he said to himself quietly. Sighing in relief.
He slid heavily onto his back and watched the darkness swallow the sky above and in his ear in the distance he heard his woman’s voice.
“As long as I love you, you will never die.”
The rider dismounted his autumn steed, the giant buck seemed to flutter away once more on the wind as leaves swirling on the ground.
Cernunnos held the child close to his chest and walked into a lush grove. Large trees surrounded him on all sides in this hidden most part of the forest. The trees were enchanted, they blocked out all eyes and all ears and were a sanctuary to those deemed worthy of the Goddess, for this was her forest.
Cernunnos approached her, her back turned, humming to herself as she sat on an overturned log she had hewn herself. Her hair shone auburn like the leaves as the light through the trees hit it.
“Cernunnos is that you?”
“Ah Tailtui, it is I”
“Did you bring the child?”
“See for yourself sister”
The woman turned, her freckled face was beautiful and seemed to radiate warm sunshine like the sunblushed part of a leaf. She smiled warmly as she saw the child in his arms and put her arms out to meet the babe.
She took the child in her arms and regarded the baby fondly.
“Does the child have a name?” she asked not taking her eyes off of the baby.
“Does his father still live?”
“You would know better than I”
She sighed with a deep regret but still beamed her warm smile to the child.
“Then I will name you, come along now” she said as she took the child deeper into her forest.
A tinny laughter in the dark, a mocking spiteful triumphant snickering. Only that sound and heat, an unbearable humid heat all around.
“At last!” the familiar voice said. “Open your eyes and bow before your new king.” The voice laughed.
His eyes opened a crack suddenly as if they were locked tight with fear. A fear of seeing this new world.
Before him a mound of bones, sounds of rushing water, of screams, shouts of joy and fear, of pleasure and pain.
Cur’s we yes followed the bones and the laughter up and sat atop the throne of skulls sat Tethra grinning like a demon. His form had changed but that grin and voice were unmistakable. He looked older and gnarled, his flesh peeled away to resemble something barely human. His skull almost bare exposed bone but pinkish and sickly, his appearance more fomor than whatever he was mixed with or once was. His features long and crooked.
“I told you we would meet again” Tethra grinned “I have waited a long time for this moment” he sat back on his throne “Welcome Firbolg”
Behind the throne stretched an infinite of blackened grey and reddish clouds. The sky twisting with black and purple lightning. Rivers of glowing orange and red fire and enormous blackened mountains bleeding and oozing bile upon the land. The forsaken land of the dead and the damned. Endlessly suffering and also feasting, dying and also killing, being hunted and also hunting.
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