Welcome back to another update in the Mortis Custos series! Today we're continuing from where @zakludick left off from Part 68. I'm hoping you all enjoy the update, especially with what is happening with the undead twins!
The giant maw opened before her, and she was sure this was the end. Then a sword screwed the jaw shut and the beast fell back with her still within its grasp. Magna hit the ground with a rush of air exploding from her chest, but she didn’t let the stars that flashed before her eyes knock her out.
“Thank you.” She bellowed and got to her feet and used the flat of her blade to hit the face of an undead creature before her.
Steps her father and mother had taught her came back to her as she danced between the beasts which sought to eat her. She ducked under weapons and groping arms, using the edge of her blade to remove hands and fingers, while the back was reserved for cracking jaws and skulls. She danced as she had never danced before. Now and again, she saw claws, swords, and a shield dispatching things around her that she was unable to get to immediately. Nothing distracted her as she heard her father instructing her on what to do. It felt as if her father was right there with her. Even when fatigue burned at her muscles and lungs, she could almost feel her father correct her arm positions, ensure her footing was stable, and that she breathed in and out when it was needed.
Then it all stopped. There was nothing left to dismantle as the undead crawled away from the area that no longer had anything that would sate them. Magna dropped to her knees to vomit with fatigue. Her body was spent, and all her muscles were quivering. She didn’t have the strength to react when a large hand gripped her shoulder suddenly. All she could do was look up at the spectre whose hand gripped her.
“Dad?” she whispered.
Johnathan nodded his head just once, smiled, and then faded away. Not too far away from Magna, Ostia got to her feet. She scuffed at the sigil she had drawn on the ground. She had had no idea who she had managed to summon, but as soon as she had seen the spirit join the fray with the girl, she knew it was the man who had trained her from birth.
“So that was Johnathan.” She said under her breath, “Interesting.”
The wraith scanned the area around her. The undead, unable to feed in their condition, were leaving to recover in the magics further away from the castle. They had time now. The creatures that lay motionless after their defeat were slowly being taken care of as Mortis moved among them.
Ostia looked away and regretted demanding to see her brother’s face. When they had been charged with being the defender and fighter for their world, they had had to give up so much, and she had hated him. He was able to rest until he was needed, but she was forced to stalk this realm of between as a wraith, never knowing any form of rest. However, from what she had seen him doing, she had gotten off a lot easier with their curse.
Ostia made her way to the girl who was crying silent tears and said gently, “I summoned a wraith to help you. I had no idea I would call forth your father. He must have loved you dearly to have hung around in this realm for as long as he did. Watching the two of you fight together was an honour and beautiful.”
“I have seen him twice now, and I am still to say goodbye to him.” Whispered the girl as she stumbled to her feet.
Ostia helped her gain her feet and then turned her to face what her uncle and brother were doing. The wraith didn’t want to witness what her own twin was doing.
“He’s my brother.” Said Magna as she struggled to return her sword to its sheath before wiping her mouth.
“No, the big one, my uncle, he’s my brother.”
Ostia looked at her in confusion before looking back to the pair before them. She knew he wasn’t the boy’s uncle, but to be himself from another dimension was beyond her imagination. She took a deep breath in and tried to sense what had caused this event. She was met with a strange tang on his scent, not unpleasant, but sharp like ammonia and spicy like…
“Hot peppers?” asked Magna.
“Indeed. You smell magic?”
“Something new, but yes.”
“It’s a rare skill, you should enhance it.”
Soon the rest of their companions joined them. The life drinker put a hand on Magna’s shoulder and grinned, “I haven’t seen anyone fight like that since the old King Magnus.”
Ostia immediately glanced at the vampire and then at Mortis who came forward to join them. He was doing his best to wipe the black gore from his face.
“Indeed.” She whispered, once more feeling guilty at how she had treated him.
She handed the exhausted girl to the guard, but Derric immediately insisted she lean against his bulky white form while growling at the life drinker. Ostia then approached her brother as he dug desiccated flesh from his teeth.
“They don’t know who you are, do they?” she asked quietly.
“The mage does, the youngsters don’t. There is no need to tell them.”
The undead twins stood in silence for a while before Ostia spoke, “I resented you.”
Mortis took a deep breath and sighed, “I know.”
“You got to rest in your gilded coffin, and I was forced to stalk these halls for eternity, never knowing any rest.”
“I was the firstborn. I should have taken on the curse in full force, but you refused! Now, look at you! A Death Eater! Is that what you wanted!”
“Shh!” Mortis hissed, “It was never my choice to be placed on the throne.”
“And it wasn’t mine to become this!”
“You think I wanted this!” he indicated his face.
Ostia looked behind her to see if anyone had heard them, but they all seemed more interested in what was happening between the mage and the boy. She turned back to her brother and saw the look of defeat on his face. His face…she had been spared the ravages of time, he had not. He looked away and sighed heavily, “Where do we go from here Ostia?”
“You will return with the living and continue what you swore you’d do, as I have to.” She growled at him.
“What if…” Mortis paused for a moment and looked up at Adiran. “What if I told you he may have a way to help break the curse on this land? What if I told you he could give you the eternal rest you want?”
“And what of you?” she spat at him.
“Ostia, this was never about me. This was about me trying to secure your line to the throne, not mine.” He hissed. “Whether that incited the curse, I don’t know, but your blood runs through the veins of those children. They are the future rulers of Drakenspoort, as you should have been!”
The wraith looked at the revenant and she didn’t know what to say. As soon as she was able to frame her next question, there was an explosion of light behind her. The ritual was done.
Whelp, have fun Zak! Do with this as you wish.
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