TKoT 1-1: The Bond

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09: Vish

The Serpentine Flag

The Scale drifted outside the Hidden Veil. The large air-ship is the flagship of the demigod, Vish, one of the children of the god Voloth. The Scale enjoyed a luxurious bridge with a large throne made of gold and silver with plush red cushions. The bridge had three pilot stations, a series of communication tubes. Several white-uniformed green-scaled humanoids operated the various stations in near silence.

Vish is reptilian, with heavy serpent features, venomous fangs, red beady eyes, and healthy green scales. His scaly muscle laden body only enhanced his physical level of intimidation. He wore little in clothing, just tight-fitting red shorts and a sizeable leathery belt with a silver belt buckle. His feet being covered in a bright white set of sandals that lace up to his scaly legs. Armor was not something he liked to wear, and his skin was already hard enough to stop bladed weapons. Magic is outlawed unless you worshiped Voloth of the Spire. Others’ inability to use magic made running across mortals with weapons that could harm him much less likely. Vish enjoyed the pleasure of his women, who he always had one chained to his throne if he ever needed to be pleased. Today the bloody collar set empty as he had broken his toy earlier this morning.

A smaller reptilian attendant dressed in a light red uniform approached Vish’s great throne. Vish intentionally kept weaker staff than himself, easier to bully and threaten. Hector was slightly shorter than Vish stood ready with several papers attached to a clipboard. “My lord, the reports are ready.”

Vish raised and lowered his hand, indicating the attendant to read the report, for he never could be bothered to read any of them himself. Vish considered reading these dull reports a complete waste of his time.

“The outpost now has new information about the Canandanace clipper that was seen entering the storm wall. The three outriggers sent into the wall to pursue never returned. Presumed destroyed.”

Vish responded while looking bored, “Hector, my father sent me here as a means of ridding himself of me. He says I am an animal, blah, blah. He allows me to have a broken down outpost to call my castle. I don’t know what I did to deserve this harsh treatment.”

A table strung across one wall held maps of the local area. The Hidden Veil’s border is detailed heavily. A navigator shouts out his command, “Helm turn 35’ to Port. Maintain altitude and speed. We are approaching the Wind Peaks.”

One of the three pilots responds. “Yes, helm to thirty-five to port, maintaining altitude.” His forked tongue slips out for a moment, then snakes back into his mouth.

Vish turns to his assistant, “Hector, remind me again of the Wind Peaks?”

Hector kept his sigh inward, and he did not want to get beat or become one of Vish’s playthings. “My lord, as you wish. The Wind Peaks is where the extreme wind from the upper atmosphere dips down to just above the mountain peaks. Fly above the peaks will cause the vessel to be flung downwards into the narrow passages below. The wind still makes navigation nearly impossible through the passage. The ground is no safer as a large established colony of earth lords lives in and out of the area.”

A voice comes echoing through one of the brass funnels. “Observation Reporting! Disturbance in the cloud wall, starboard!”

Both Vish and Hector move to the starboard observation window. A red glow can be seen moving through the edge of the clouds.

Vish raises his fist, “All hands prepare for battle!” Finally, some action! Maybe I will get myself a new plaything after all.

Vish follows the red light as the Chimera breaks through the cloud cover. He slams his fist down into his open hand. A grin spreads across his lips, “Have the Tongue and Fang detach! Ready to release Sooth if needed. Keep these rebels alive, and I need to have some new toys!”

One of the bridge officers moves to the communication funnels and barks the commands of his master. Moments later, the ship physically separates into three segments. The Tongue and Fang are smaller vessels that makeup half of the Scale. The detaching ships are lighter, smaller, and faster than the bulky Scale itself.

The Chimera’s Desperation

Rolland looked up into the clearing skies, and the cloud wall slowly faded; an eerie red light glowed in front of the vessel like a hot poker cutting a path through the ice. The Chimera burst into full daylight. “SHIT!” He could now see the closing Serpentine vessels, scrambling from his seat on the upper aft deck. Rolland raced to the nearby brass communication tube, he yelled. “We got company!” Rolland ran back to where he had bolts for his Black Dragon, the massive ballista mounted at the rear of the ship. He loaded the red bolt, this bolt created by Opal to have a magical exploding tip.

Shaitar emerged from the aft cabin onto the main deck, now looking at the closing vessels. He pulled out his telescope and viewed the threats approaching. “This does not look good at all.”

Torac darted from the bow of the ship, and he grew to the size of a horse. “That ship is the Scale, Vish captains her; he’s a cruel tyrant and the son of Voloth. The smaller ships are the Tongue and Fang. Though this is not a fight, I want to engage in.”

Shaitar faced the dragon, and this is the mighty defender of the Hidden Veil. “Why? We have a god, the biggest dragon I know.”

Torac growled a bit, “They have a god, five times our numbers, and they have a dragon just as dangerous as me, Sooth.”

“What options do we have?” Shaitar watched as the serpentine ships slowly grew closer.

A small bit of electricity danced around Toracs eyes, “The Wind Peaks fly through the mountain pass. Neither Sooth nor I can engage in the Windy Peaks. Your ship is small enough to maneuver, but is your pilot good enough not to smash us into the mountainsides?”

Shaitar, without hesitation, “He’s the best.” Shaitar raced to the flight cabin at the bow of the ship. Pushing the door open, “Head to the Wind Peaks!”

Maverick did a double-take at his captain, “Wait, what? You have to be crazy. The wind running through the pass is insane. Only a fool would go in there.”

Kate, who was sitting right behind him on the co-pilot’s chair, “Sounds like something pirates would do!” She placed her hand on Maverick’s shoulder, “I have faith in you. You can do this. I can help.” Whipping her head back towards Shaitar, “Since leaving the Hidden Veil, I understand just how underpowered I have been. I can help guide Maverick through the passage with the link we share.”

Shaitar nodded, “Do it!” He moved to a brass funnel and spoke into a metal mouthpiece. “All hands, secure yourself. We are going into a storm.”

Kate closed her eyes, and she had been taught about how to use her perception field. A way of seeing the world around her. She only had a limit of a few dozen feet, but after leaving the Hidden Veil, this field expanded into miles around her. She could sense the air current, the position of the mountains. Life around her, she felt the crew’s place in the Chimera and the approaching vessels. In particular, one stood out; he was on the slower ship, the presence had a strange aura instead. This strange aura is another god or demigod.

Kate asked, “Shaitar, do you know who is on the slower ship? A powerful aura is coming from that vessel.”

“Torac said that a demigod by the name of Vish was on the Scale. He’s a son of Voloth.” Shaitar wrapped moved to a seat against the rear wall, pulled the leather straps, and tied them to himself.

Kate extended her presence into her soul-mate.

Maverick let out a gasp, “Wow. I can see a lot, no I can feel the air current around the ship.” He physically shivered for a moment.

Kate just grinned, “Your welcome.”

Maverick pushed a lever, stomped a peddle.”Hang on!” The Chimera responded with a dive and increased speed.

What, that is inconceivable!

Vish stood on the bridge readying himself, he enjoyed the chase, and soon he would be down onto this renegade vessel. The mortals who defied the will of the Holy Trinity of the Spire will be taught a lesson they would never forget. He watched in anticipation; the ship changed direction and headed toward a series of peaks.

Vish felt a presence one he had not felt before, and another god was nearby. He looked down at that ship, most gods new by sense which the other gods were. He did not recognize this aura. An unknown god? A coward and a traitor, a god is just trying to cloak their presence. “Hector, ready Sooth. We are going to need him. A god is trying to aid the rebels on that ship. My father will be so proud of me when I capture this traitor.”

Hector only nodded and moved to one of the brass funnels with a title card beneath named Sooth. “Oh, a mighty dragon of the Holy Spire, you are called on to ready yourself for battle.”

The small Canadance vessel appeared to be speeding up. Vish’s serpentine brow lowered as he realized that his pursuing ships were slowing down. “Helm, why are we slowing?”

The pilot answered without looking back, “The Wind Peaks, my lord. Our ships can not follow.”

Vish growled, “No, follow. Or you will be my plaything for this evening.”

The pilot gulped and pulled his twisted, forked tongue back into his head. “Yes, my lord.”

Vish turned to one of the communication officers, “Tell the other ships the same. Pursue the infidel for the glory of the Spire!” He moved back to his golden throne and sat down, fuming.

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