Go Forth In Search Of Truth And Battle [DONE] Jun 27, 2019 16:10:04 GMT -6
Post by Shura on Jun 27, 2019 16:10:04 GMT -6
Smoke danced from the gutted roof of the One-Eyed Vulture Prince's palace. Tongues of flame licked out from every high window and murder-hole. Two of the palace's seven towers, which had once stabbed at the sky like the accusing fingers on a malformed hand, now lay in ruin. Even the great double doors that had once barred the entrance to the dread fortress were strewn about the threshold, reduced to little but blackened rubble.
A figure appeared in the smog-choked portal, its proportions gradually growing more distinct as it padded through the haze. It was lean of limb, diminutive by the standards of this savage realm, and in its head seemed to be set three crimson embers. The last clinging tendrils of smoke parted around it as it strode over the stricken threshold, and blood-red dusklight illuminated the face of Seek Heaven Through Violence, the wandering demon who the wastes knew by the name Shura. Grime and gore streaked her features, and her great shock of white hair still sizzled at the tips, but she carried herself with an air of victory, her fanged mouth set in a rictus of triumph.
Silence reigned around Shura, broken only by the sound of her bare feet against the stone. In the deathly quiet, each step echoed loud as a thunderclap.
The One-Eyed Vulture Prince's palace perched atop a mighty stone stairway, and its thousand-and-one steps were littered with bodies. Shura regarded them with cold dispassion, now that the heat of battle-fury had simmered back to down into a smouldering coal in her gut. They were just shapes - the shapes of those who had angered her. She stepped carelessly over the corpse of a demon with great crab-like pincers, pausing only to wrench one chitinous arm free from its socket with a single wet pop. Her fangs bit down on hard exoskeleton, digging through the chitin to taste the marrow within.
Shura chewed as she descended idly down the stairway, pondering the words she had dragged out of the Prince's mouth before ending his pitiful existence. There is a world among the stars that is called Namek. The sky there has three eyes, just as you. The sages of that world are versed in mystic lore, and it's said their dragon god can grant any wish, unravel any secret. There is a portal that will lead you there, a place where the wall between the worlds is worn thin. Look for it in the Cave of Wings, on the far side of the desert. That was the gist of, it anyway, bar the begging and snivelling. Shura's mouth worked as if she tasted something bitter.And that was saying something, because the crab demon's flesh was plenty putrid already.
Weaklings, the lot of them, the Prince and all his retinue. The old yearning was awake in her again, the need to divine the meaning of her name, to interpret the riddle of her existence. Yet it was equalled, nearly eclipsed, by the violence within her, its flames stoked by the disappointment she had felt during the battle of the palace. For all his far travelling and knowledge of things unseen by most demons, the Prince was merely an indolent lout, relying on the strength of his followers to maintain his rule over this petty wasteland fief. Shura had been led to his fortress by the gabblings of lesser fiends, either overheard on the night winds or extracted from their tongues by force, and she had sorely hoped to be challenged. It was the hardest fights that seemed to slake her fury best. There was no satisfaction in littering her wake with the chaff of demonkind. The fire inside her didn't care what it was fed, but it would soon be raging high once more after such miserly fare, threatening to eat her whole unless it found something else to gorge upon.
Her gaze wandered to the distant mountains, and the roiling mass of black clouds that cloaked their peaks. Her pulse quickened as she pondered the monsters that dwelled on the other side, the true Makai monarchs, to whom the squabbling of little princes and lords in the desert was as the scurrying of ants. One way or the other, the wastes couldn't contain her any longer. Shura's blood sang to her, brought to boil by the prospect of great battle beyond the mountains. It seemed to her that she stood at the fork of a road, with two paths unraveling before her. She could stop here, she knew, lay down this ridiculous quest with no end in sight, and seek violence no longer for the faint promise of heaven - whatever that was - but for the sheer joy of breaking skulls and dancing in gore and flame.
The struggle was long and silent, a battle between body and spirit that nearly sundered the muscles from her bones. But eventually, something higher in her prevailed; the memory of kind hands and a soft voice unlike any she had felt or heard in the Demon Realm, and whose origin still remained a cruel mystery to her. Shura tossed her mane and growled deep in her chest, despising her down choice even as she made it. Casting aside the half-eaten remains of the arm, and sparing not the briefest of glances for the dead in her wake, she kicked off the stairway with enough force to crack the stone.
She soared westward over the desert, toward the Cave of Wings and the world of the dragon sages. The shadow of the mountains taunted her as she flew.