Welcome back to Maledicturs Terra. This is a Chain Story between myself and @lex-zaiya, meaning that we each write the parts alternatively.
Nine parts into the new book already! How awesome is that?
Sebastian sighed. His massive shoulders heaved with the movement.
For a brief moment, Mortis allowed himself to feel sorry for the King of Clarprati. But it would be a weakness to have pity motivate his feelings for the other combatant.
Should this Lifedrinker be a threat to his family, his blood lineage, then he would destroy him and his whole army. His entire nation in fact, if that is what it took to keep Magna and Adrian safe.
It was his duty.
The Lifedrinker seemed to be at a loss for words. He needed some moments to collect his thoughts. It was clear that this bestially large warrior suffered from the trauma and deaths of his people that had suffered... and those deaths that he had caused himself. The pain that he had caused with his own hands... or fangs... was eroding him from the inside.
Mortis decided to give the man time to reflect.
"We... were losing so many," Sebastian said after a few minutes. "People turned, became feral, and were ripping people apart. We found out about silver by accident. A woman soldier who had been wearing silver was attacked. The necklace was dislodged from below her clothing and armor she wore and it had touched the hand of her attacker. The screech and smell that followed was overlooked initially, but when it was investigated, the woman came forth with this theory."
Sebastian paced back and forth as he spoke.
"We put the theory to the test and it was used in one of the counter raids that we would stage at night. It was verified. Silvered steel became something that Clarprati specialized in."
Mortis nodded. "This must have been before your sister had left the country."
"She had already begun moving some of our refugees past the limits of our borders. She and the others were trained in fighting with the bladed gauntlets well before that set was crafted. We had some martial masters that did the training. The chief amongst those masters was assigned to Maria... um... Mary."
"Mary left. I stayed. The war went badly. My parents did not even tell her that I had been turned. While my mother was arranging for... Mary... to be married to the brute, I was in chains. They fed me chickens and pigs. I was nearly too far gone, nearly lost my mind to the beast within. But there is a way that you retain your self so to speak."
"Yes?" Mortis asked. His attention was held by this story, yet he was too experienced to be caught offguard. He watched this Lifedrinker for signs of aggression. Sebastian glanced back at Mortis and nodded as though acknowledging the fact that the ancient King was no fool.
"Human blood." Sebastian said. "The purer the better. Of your countrymen is preferable and if you could gain it from your kin... your close family... well then... I retained myself. I got it all back from the brink." The man's shoulders sagged again. "But it was an accident."
Mortis said nothing. He felt that he could say nothing about the subject. The time that he had fed on Magna when in need of power and vitality haunted him.
"My mother wanted to be near me, despite me being a chained beast." Sebastian said. "She thought that she would be safe if I was already feeding on something else. Yet the curse does not work this way. Her scent..." The King trailed off.
Sebastian seemed lost in memory, the pain was evident on his face. Mortis knew that this was no act. The man was haunted by the memory and he really did not care who saw it.
"And your father?" Mortis prompted.
"Ever the fool." Sebastian replied. "Rushed in to be near mother without thinking. I got hold of him as soon as he was in range. I was maddened and bestial and ripped my chains out of the wall. I had the power to do this and my rage was... I was ready to rip the guards to shreds that had come in defense of the King and Queen... they were too late... And then the change happened. I calmed. I thought. I spoke. The Captain of the guard would not let harm come to me."
Sebastian turned and looked directly at Mortis. "So that is my sad story. It is not something I usually talk about. The discovery led to me regaining my senses and our royal line did not end. Clarprati, though mourning the loss of King and Queen still had a leader and though some were loathe to accept it, our traditions made me King. Killing my parents... it is unforgivable. I have strived to lead what remains of both the living and the near-dead as best I can."
"So why are you here?"
"There was a war here." Sebastian said. His eye lit like a fire. "I know that we would have been too late to the battle should we have sent aid. We heard however that there was an army of Lifedrinkers here! An army! Where are they?"
"Who are they? Where did they come from?" Sebastian insisted.
"I do not know."
Sebastian growled. "Why would you withold this information from me?"
"Really, we have been having more than enough of our own problems. If you seek answers about Lucien's host then you should ask Adiran." Mortis would have rolled his eyes if he could. "Why do you wish to know more about this other host of Lifedrinkers?"
"We had never heard of Lifedrinkers outside Clarprati. We thought to be the curse of our land." Sebastian seemed half in thought. "Lucien... If they were able to mobilize an army, they must have been able to master their curse far better than we do. What did they feed on while they were here?"
"Feed. Drink. Did you have to offer them some of your prisoners or convicts?"
"I never saw their Lord or their ilk feed off a human nor animal."
Sebastian smiled unexpectedly. "Then I am at the right place! Take me to this Adiran!"
Sticky ball! Mwahahahaha! And over to you again @lex-zaiya, enjoy!
|by @zakludick||by @lex-zaiya|
|Part 1||Part 2|
|Part 3||Part 4|
|Part 5||Part 6|
|Part 7||Part 8|
|You are here!||Coming soon!|
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