Mortis Custos Part 28



This is a continuation of the Mortis Custos Part 27 by @lex-zaiya.
To start at the beginning of the story please see the links provided at the end of this post!

Viewer discretion is advised due to gory violence! Undead! Swords! Death! Beware!


Part 28

The harpy turned and regarded Adiran with owlish eyes.

"Well, well..." She said slowly. I did not expect you to return here so quickly.

She lunged forward, her taloned legs arching up from the ground as she effortlessly lifted off the ground. Talons flashed out like a kick, talons set to rake at the Magi.

Adiran ducked the attack, his hands working on the portal summoning and the harpy sailed through the air above him.

"This custom of yours is getting really tiresome." The mage said between gritted teeth, trying not to break his concentration.

"Yet it is necessary," Helga said as she got distance between her and Adiran and then turned in the air to return to her attack.

Magna and Derric just stared as the previously happy seeming harpy was attacking the Mage. Mortis moved towards Adiran, his hand on the hilt of his sword.

The Mage held out his hand to stay the knight. "Don't interfere. She does this because she is compelled to. If you get in the way, she has to attack you too."

"I am certain I can vanquish her if she is a foe." Mortis scoffed. "If she is a foe?"

Adiran shrugged. "Not really. Just give it a minute. The people who set up this gate were not.... kind..."

By that time Helga had returned at breakneck speed.

"Watch out!" She yelled. Adiran sidestepped and she swept past.

"What in the name of the Blood..." Mortis yelled but kept back. Magna could see that the knight was almost desperate to ensure that her uncle was safe, yet he had been ordered to stay his blade."

"I am really sorry about this!" The Harpy yelled down at them. She swooped up high into the sky. "It is not my choice!"

Magna took a deep breath, there was a fair smell, dusty and faintly comparable to flour. "I can smell it!"

"You smell magic?" Derric asked. He took a deep breath. "I smell other things."

Magna looked at the little boy. It was strange. He seemed to be about an inch or two taller than he was a few days ago. Perhaps she was just imagining it, but the boy's hair seemed to have grown longer as well.

"Well, I can't smell anger on her. There is..." He took another sniff. "Almost fear. She's worried. Also she's..."

"That's really interesting child, but you please be quiet!" Adiran yelled at them. "I need to focus on undoing her compulsion as well as avoiding her attacks. Go off a little distance. I will be fine!"

"Are you sure?" Magna asked.

"Go already!" The bearded mage yelled.

The trio withdrew and left the mage ducking and side stepping the Harpy's attacks while she yelled at him and apologized.

Magna took Derric a little ways, they sat looking out into the swamp. Once in a while they saw a frog or some other aquatic creature in the muck.

"I smelt something else as well." Derric said. He pointed into the fog.

"You mean the lizards?" Magna asked. Derric shook his head and said nothing. He did not seem to know what it was that he was smelling. He seemed a bit sad. He was out in a world that he had never seen before but this was not like the forest... this was foreboding and sick.

"I... saw something..." Magna said eventually to break the silence. "Perhaps they are the same?"

Derric seemed to brighten up a bit at that. "What was it?"

She tried to think what it looked like but it was grey and everything around them was grey. Just then something moved in the fog again. Instead of answering Derric she held very still. Sure enough the creature moved again. Soft seeming grey fur rippled along a small body peeking out with curious eyes at Magna.

Coming out from behind a large log, it came closer slowly.

"There." She said.

It was still a distance away, but good enough for her and Derric to make eye contact with the creature.

"What is it" Derric asked. "It is not a ghoul..."

"I have read stories and seen pictures." Magan said. "I think it is a monkey."

"Monkey?" Derric asked. "I have never seen one in the forest."

Mortis clanked up behind them. "I have never heard of an ape living in a swamp." He professed. "This one is small... I wonder if it is not an infant?"

There was a caw from a crow, floating like a specter of death through the fog.

"Oh no!" Magna exclaimed. "The crows are going to lead the lizards to this monkey!"

"And to us, we should withdraw." Mortis said.

"We can't just leave it to die." Derric complained.

"We can. It would suffer whatever its fate would be if we had not come across it." Mortis said and took a hold of the body's shoulder. "Let's get to the horses..."

There was a rumbling sound and rapid splashes could be heard right behind the little grey monkey. Magna drew her sword. "There is no time to withdraw."

A four legged lizard the size of a boar barreled into view. It saw Magna and the others and changed course, charging at an oblique angle, not quite avoiding them, just aiming around them and the muddy pools between them.

This path took it almost straight on top of the little monkey. The massive lizard slid in the mud as it saw the monkey. The little creature seemed about to be squashed and Magna thought she would witness the creature die when the monkey drew back its large supple lips and screeched.

Massive fangs were revealed.

The lizard's eyes rolled in its head as it tried to backpedal away from the little creature. The little monkey lunged out and bit the lizard, which then shook the monkey off and ran towards Magna's position, again having changed direction.

"Oh no." Was all she could say but the lizard dodged past her. The monkey had not pursued. Instead it sat on a log and licked the blood off its fangs and lips with a long thin tongue. It regarded Magna coolly, as if to say that she could be next.

"I think we can defeat this creature should it attempt to attack." Mortis said calmly.

Crows began to fly in, cawing and cawing.

Derric sniffed the air. "More are coming."

Shadows appeared through the fog. Bigger than the monkey, bigger than the lizard had been even. Trotting forward on heavy front knuckles on what looked very similar to human hands, the grey apes took up position around the small ape. One of them picked up the small one, a parent perhaps.

The creatures had heavy brows, massive fangs protruded from their lowed jaw, but where one snarled it would reveal many sharp teeth on both jaws. The creatures were heavily muscular and seemed mean and calculating.

"I hate it when I am right." Mortis said grimly and gripped his sword with both hands.

There were at least six of the creatures within view. More were in the shadows beyond. The largest one raised itself up on its read legs and roared, bearing its fangs in a menacing grimace.

Derric dropped down on all fours and began to expand. "It's... time..." He growled. Magna felt as though she was sweating all over. She had her sword out and she was ready to defend her friends. How would they manage to defeat this many of these things?

More of the apes began to swarm in through the fog and came to stand with their troop leader.

They were more cunning than most animals, they were getting ready to charge.

Something shot past Magna like an arrow and flew straight at the leader of the troop. Talons flashed out and raked deep gouges through the grey fur on the ape's neck and back.

Helga screamed, it sounded like an angry woman and an eagle all at once. There was panic among the troop as she swooped high above them. An enemy they could not reach. As she went, Helga batted a crow and it fell among the apes. One of them grabbed the bird and bit its head bit then retreated when it saw Helga sweeping down.

The leader of the apes was wounded and it roared in defiance.

In this time, Derric had grown larger than any of the apes and stood on all fours growling at the pack. Magna and Mortis took positions either side of the massive wolf.

"Let them come to us." Mortis commanded. "If they dare."

Meanwhile the Harpy swooped down once more and all of a sudden, her talons blazed in blue fire. As one the troop of apes screamed in fear for fire was something they hated most.

Out of the fog came another figure behind Magna. She looked over her shoulder and saw that Adiran was holding out his hands, three fingers extended on each. His fingertips were ablaze with blue flames.

She looked again at Helga flying above them, her feet had three taloned toes each.

One moment they had been fighting and now the Mage and the Harpy were working together!

Always full of.... secrets! She signed and stood a bit more at ease. "I doubt I will need to use my sword right now." She said to herself but kept the weapon out.

Something else was moving in the fog beyond the troope. It was larger than even their leader.

"Oh what now?"



Your turn @lex-zaiya!

Here is an explanation of Chain Stories and the current Chainstory Library

Mortis Custos Parts:

by @lex-zaiyaby @zakludick
Part 1Part 2
Part 3Part 4
Part 5Part 6
Part 7Part 8
Part 9Part 10
Part 11Part 12
Part 13Part 14
Part 15Part 16
Part 17Part 18
Part 19Part 20
Part 21Part 22
Part 23Part 24
Part 25Part 26
Part 27You are Here!

The Reader List

If you would like to be tagged in every episode of Mortis Custos, leave us a comment and get added in, miss nothing!

The Watchlist:
@weone, @merenludick, @clairemobey, @therneau, @blitzzzz, @pravesho, @joetunex, @captainquack22, @irisworld, @braaiboy, @sketchygamerguy, @fuego-oscuro,, @dibblers.dabs, @beeber, @brittandjosie, @tamacvet, @thinkrdotexe, @alonicus, @joetunex, @stdd, @uop, @luizeba, @cryptoniusrex, @agreste, @itzchemaya

3 columns
2 columns
1 column
1 Comment