Supernaturally Insane

What if your choice to believe, or not to believe, was the only weapon you have. What if, the enemy, cannot be found, though within you it is hidden? What if, maybe, just maybe, the truth is in disguise.

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6. Erass

“You know me, as the nightmare. I understand why, and I am sorry for any pain I have caused, but I am not sorry for what I have done. You see, I do not choose my targets randomly. I choose those who have corrupted hearts. I cannot target those prepared to fight me, they will expose me. If anyone were to find me, and tell of where I live, I would have to move out. I only just moved and built here not long ago. It’s a nice place and I’d rather I live here a while longer.” Alexander’s hisses were less intense now that he’d had some wine, though, it did irritate Durnik a bit after listening to it so far all night.

“But, I have sacrificed these corrupted hearts, not for me, but to help in a crusade. The armies of Az are rising. I don’t follow Az, but this enemy is a threat. Sure Az can easily fight this enemy and I know that he will, but my focus is fighting the Necromancer’s clan of Neresance. I know this is your destination, so I knew you could help. The clan call themselves ‘harbingers of death’. Though, they truly are not, yes they bring death through various ways, but they do not hold the power of death. You are a true harbinger of death, I have heard of your strange condition. You turn in to a very expression of death. This clan would seek to recruit you. But know this, they are enemies of Az and seek the demise of Az, do not join them, for they too are my enemy. They have taken and kidnapped my beautiful wife Erass.” Durnik let his jaw drop, he did not know who Alexander was at all it seems.

“Wait! Just wait…” Durnik needed to process his thoughts. Why was it a surprise? That Alexander was not that different to any other person he knew. “Woah… well… uhh…”

Alexander laughed. His laugh was dark, but strangely comforting.

“I take it your prejudice is beginning to wear off?” Alexander asked, purely since he enjoyed watching people figure all this out.

“What prejudice? I ain’t prejudice”. Durnik went red in the face and found eye contact difficult. He then asked why Alexander hadn’t attempted to rescue his wife.

“Oh, but I have been planning to rescue her for a while now. I have developed a plan, I believe that you are here for a reason. I have heard of your power on the field without your deathly transformation. Their prison camp holds other Necromancers from across Elvide. They await my return for an uprising. I was to await a fierce warrior. Had I have not realised you had destroyed that Phoenix, I would have not easily chosen you.” Alexander’s tone changed slightly more solemn.

Alexander saw that Durnik had questions regarding the Phoenix he had slain. So he volunteered himself to explain the history of the birds. How, that it was an indeed failure from many years ago when he wanted to learn to summon more than just undead. Unfortunately however, it is hard for a Necromancer to give life when they are used to calling the dead.

“The other bird, is part of my plan however. It is an undead apparition of the volcanic bird Inferno. Inferno will be a key role in rescuing my beloved.” Alexander then changed his tone to a slightly more cheerful expression, still with the now incredibly annoying hiss. “Aha! Of course, the battle plan. We leave tomorrow morning, we shall eliminate these criminals soon.”

The plan was quite simple, Durnik was to go in and find the prisoners. He was to wait until an opportunity arose to alert Alexander of where the prisoner were. If the clan were to suspect Durnik was an intruder, he was to release the prisoners and fight alongside them and wait until Alexander sends Inferno in. The number one priority was to protect Erass. Out of all prisoners, Erass was to be the first one Durnik sets free. Inferno would then fly down and eliminate the enemy clans largest attackers, who were in no doubt going to summon their own undead titans.

If possible however, Durnik was to sneak Erass out first, and then Inferno could unleash his full power and destroy the entire clan. Durnik was at first hesitant, killing all those helpless innocent prisoners? This idea did not bring Durnik much joy, but, at least it was his way out.

His way out? He was already halfway to his destination and Alexander was on a hilltop a few kilometres away. He wasn’t under any threat? Why was he doing this for Alexander? He pushed the thought aside until he reached the outskirts of the camp. Alexander warned that they would all be disguised as villagers and innocent workers, but they were all necromancers. The sight of a small town was not what Durnik had anticipated at all. As soon as Durnik set foot into the town gates, he heard a small fain whisper.

Listen…. Listen…. Listen…” the voice was eerie and drove chills down Durnik’s spine. Durnik felt the whisper against his ears, but felt an uneasiness stir in his heart. Something was right. He searched the town for half the day, familiarising himself, asking guards and even went into political housings and asking for the location of the prisoners.

It wasn’t until the morning of the next day that Durnik learned the location of where the prisons were. He searched the entire prison searching for Erass. He searched the entire area until one prisoner grabbed his arm as he walked by. Durnik looked to see who had grabbed his arm, but was startled to see a young woman wearing the dull grey cloth prisoner’s clothing. She was reaching between the bars of her cubic stone cell.

“Sir, do you seek the great Erass?” Her voice was weak.

“Perhaps? Do you have information about where she may be?” Durnik was listening intently to her now.

“You have caused quite the stir in town, word has spread that the great Erass is being planned to be executed.” She was virtually begging Durnik to listen when she spoke, the desperation in her voice touched him.

“Executed? Who is making these accusations?” Durnik thought they suspected him as the potential killer.

“They say the nightmare has appeared to her just this night, but she saw that he was laughing and taunting her. She is hopeful that he will not find him, but your searching for her is raising questions on whether you are here to take her and help the Nightmare, or to help Erass.” This new piece of information raised a lot of questions inside of Durnik.  “You see sir, the Nightmare will attack her tonight! You have to do something, she lives in the throne’s quarters in the centre of town, we have until tonight!”

Durnik rushed his way to the throne room, he wanted to meet this Erass quickly, he needed to see what was going on. As he approached the throne, as sudden thought occurred to him, “I need to warn this town of their impending doom, I don’t know who is innocent, but this isn’t right.” He charged into the throne room and stood before the king, somehow he managed to run past the guards. He then fell to one knee before he spoke.

“I bring a message, I have spoken with the Nightmare, and I know his plans this night, you must listen to what I have to tell you lest your kingdom may fall. Erass has seen the nightmare, but I have spoken face to face, he is coming, with death and destruction with him. He intends to destroy everyone in this town. He sent me to rescue the prisoners to begin his revolt, but I have instead chosen to warn you.” Durnik was short of breath, but was still able to clearly communicate his warning. The king then arose from his throne.

“Hmph! It is true Erass has seen the nightmare, but what of this attack?” The King’s booming voice made it clear that he was the authority over all in this kingdom, even if it is just a small town. Durnik explained what had happened to him from when he entered the mountain and slayed Ignatius to this point.

The King listened, but warned Durnik that he is more afraid of the danger that Erass was in. He assigned Durnik to be her personal guardian.

“For your intrusion, I assign you as under my service for as long as I choose, we shall discuss how long at later times, however, to honour your warning, I assign you the task of protecting Erass. Since you have encountered Nightmare once before, you will be better equipped to defend her from the demon.” It was clear that his sentence was non-negotiable. Durnik really did not know what he was getting himself in, or how he had suddenly became guardian of Erass, but he didn’t have time to argue.

“My King, I shall do as you command, lead me to Erass so that I may meet her”. The King summoned Erass to the throne room. While Durnik and the King awaited, the commander of the army was present, Durnik explained The Nightmare’s battle plans and warned them of everything he knew. He also explained however, that he isn’t sure what The Nightmare will do once he notices that his plan hasn’t worked. The Commander devised a plan to make The Nightmare continue as if Durnik had played his role, he would send a flare as was planned, but in the middle of a trap, where he will station two hundred archers to take out Inferno.

The town bells rang, midday, they had only a few hours to prepare. The Commander requested that he leave immediately to rally his troops. With the counter attack planned, The King allowed his leave. Erass appeared shortly, she was the most beautiful woman he had ever seen. She was wearing white robes and a yellow sash over her shoulder. The sash was made of material similar to silk, and the robes were made of an expensive thick cloth. Her hair was blonde, and her stature was small. Her eyes were a mysterious grey-blue colour. She smiled as she approached The King and Durnik.

The King addressed Erass and explained the situation, Erass turned to Durnik and thanked him.

“I see, he said I was his wife? But why would he say I was a prisoner? He should have known that you were going to find me here?’ Erass’ voice was sweet to listen to. Who is she? Durnik thought himself

“Well, we must get you somewhere safe to protect you, umm –“ Durnik was thankfully interrupted before he could show his lack of manners.

“Lady Erass, the Prophetess of Light”. Durnik was shocked and overcome with awe at the magnitude of his task. He realised that this was no longer a simple task. This lady, was no ordinary Prophetess, she was a Prophetess of light, of Az. Durnik had flashbacks of his colourful dream.

“My apologies, my lady, but we must get you to safety. It’s clear that he means to destroy you!” Durnik was beginning to get anxious at his responsibility. He knew that he had to be careful, he cannot afford to change forms, he had to protect the Prophetess, even from himself.

“No sir, we are meeting with the commander, we must save the village. Come, follow me.” Durnik had no choice, never the less, he couldn’t help think that his task, just got even more complicated.

Erass began to run after the Commander, Durnik quickly followed but was stopped by the King.

“You protect her at all costs! Always!” With that the King summoned his personal guard and himself prepared for battle.

Durnik quickly ran after Erass, what was she up to? What is she thinking? Durnik had to focus on her protection, he was now under the command of the King, and Durnik knew that this was no accident.

“My lady, please wait!” Durnik cleared his mind of everything and focused on protecting Erass. They soon reached the planned trap point, Erass presented herself before the Commander with Durnik by her side.

“Ok, I need you to make sure all these archers are capable of taking out this incarnation. I have fought undead spirit’s before, we need your blessings.” Erass turned and smiled at Durnik, make sure to keep an eye on me, but don’t get too distracted watching me” She let out a giggle. What was she talking about? Has she noticed Durnik gazing upon her beauty? And why did she have a mischievous grin on her face?

Nightfall came, Durnik was armoured with what he was told was just a soldier’s standard armour. He wished Erass wore some armour, at least a helmet or something. But he was still willing to give his life for her never the less.

Then came the flare, and no longer than 10 minutes was the deafening roar of Inferno. The commander ordered for all his men to hold their ground.

This is it, thought Durnik, let it begin….

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