Descent: The Chasm

 

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That tavern was a wonderfully warm experience. Shav got his mulled wine by the fire, and later that night, a scarlet woman. I heard them make love in his room, albeit I do believe the redhead put too much accent on her own passions than Shav could. He grunted like a pig and was done with the act.

I was denied a feeding. What can I say? I expect the best in my targets, male or female. I won’t take anything less. I can be a turtle when I need to be. You know…the long walk to the next lake or pond? I have found over the years that it’s the agony that builds to the mind-numbing explosion when I take my repast.

We were at it early the next day, but I had to be very careful of the sun in such a state, so I slid my hood up past my brow, thankful for the solace of shadow. Shav was earning his keep already, leading us to the correct portal at the edges of the citadel. All night long I had meditated on Tzeentch, attempting to authenticate his presence in this world. But I came up empty handed. That’s the power of Tzeentch all over again. The power to appear slowly, mutation by mutation, until his minions  are suddenly thick as thieves, slipping through the night as easily as a shark through water.

“Portal keeper says we take the fancy black portal gate to the Chasm,” Shav reported, kindly pointing out the same to my right. “You haven’t been taking care of yourself I see.”

I twitched a brow at him, and he knew what that meant: None of your business. I wouldn’t exactly faint in sunlight yet, but in a week, that experience would be patiently waiting for me. I had time. Plenty of time to feed before that day.

How can I explain the Chasm? Overwhelming, monstrous, and foreboding are too small to serve for a proper description. Perhaps it is simpler to imagine the highest mountain you have ever seen, and then with a magical weapon, sheer it in half, staggering out a few floating islands of rock from the fallen half for decoration. Now populate that inequality with loathsome aberrations: pink skinned bodies with bristling mouths for heads; pale skinned humanoids recently risen from the grave, and a mix of brains springing about on overly large feet. Yes, I did say brains, but these brains must be from titans, for they are large (about the size of a full grown mastiff).

“This trail?” I asked doubtfully.

“The very same milady,” Shav said, lacing some sarcasm in to put a shroud over the disorienting landscape. How did any of us know when one of those floating hillocks would suddenly stop floating and hammer down on us indiscriminately? Sure, I love killing murderous fiends in a similar fashion with my spells, but to have it done to me and mine? Not bloody likely.

I pulled my hood back to get a better view of our direction. Shav shot me a look, but I nodded to the lack of sun. The shattered mountainous half that remained intact conveniently hid me from direct sunlight. His truly was a vampire’s paradise if no renovated Underdark tower could be had (and I would happily expunge a drow warparty if any were to be found).

We strode past fallen brick walls, broken forts, and large patches of weedy beds ripe only for the wind whistling through the human remains that yet moldered in their shade. The accent of death was everywhere. Broken plates, strewn furniture, lost relics. All had come to a sudden halt. A sudden halt with no prior warning, nor invitation.

“To your left!” Shav cried.

I whirled, inviting the magic into my hands, the magic of ice to be exact. With a crack the forms were covered in a thin layer of ice, hateful eyes staring out at me, waiting for a second chance to kill me.

But there would be nothing like a second chance for them. I was already whirling my arms into a searing halo of flame that blistered and burned their flesh to the bone. Such are the fortunes of war. But I wouldn’t be happy until the final combination, which came upon the foe only seconds after the flame: disintegration!

End of Chasm Descent Part 2

Authors Note:

I realize that Tzeentch is a Warhammer deity, however, my poor character doesn’t know there are realities called Warhammer and Neverwinter, nor would she know that the Chasm is largely a play on  Warhammer themes.

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