When Leah’s rite of passage came close, all the girls, the Bloodborn and many of the Val people gathered together in the Great Forest. They were preparing for the new celebration and hoping to see me rise higher. The power of the new beast is surely going to make me stronger.
Before the Rite would commence, we would have a duel. We talked about it, Regios gladly agreed to fight in our territory, he wanted to meet my girls and to see his sister, whom he hasn’t met since she rushed off to rescue me.
We prepared a large arena, cutting down many trees and digging out a hole in the ground. The hole was about ten meters deep, so our fight would be unlikely to have casualties amongst the audience. Aedim and her Elven friends cast some powerful protective enchantments to absorb any excess power trying to leave the arena.
Special guests would be attending this ceremony. Lord Galadrim and Lady Cerebria decided to come and witness the Rite. I was a somewhat influential figure as of late, so seeing me gain more power was awe inspiring and fascinating. Lord Hooligein also attended, with some succubus girls in tow. He seemed to have a liking for the House of Lust. Other leaders didn’t come, as they were either too far or too busy.
First, there would be a party since early morning. In actuality it started on previous night, but that’s a minor detail. We have been partying for the whole month, seeing how we have many birthdays to celebrate.
We were drinking and eating a lot, there were vast selections of beverages and appetizers to choose from, everybody could find something to their liking. People were glad to have a chance to talk to leaders of elves, demons or humans. The elders and Frez also enjoyed spending their time here, the last Rite was not as cheerful.
Fur balls have grown to a size of a horse, so they were running around chasing one another. We disciplined them when they were small, making them behave well.
At some point during the party, a mighty roar could be heard.
Apparently Regios hasn’t spooked anybody in a while, as his roar sounded more like he shouted it, rather than he actually roared. It was impressive enough, as it was loud and threatening, enough to send any nearby creatures to flee.
After that, a massive shadow descended upon the forest. A massive body with giant wings flew overhead and made its way towards the arena. It landed there, sending dust clouds around. When the dust settles, in there stood a humanoid dragon, looking around menacingly.
“Zern! You stole away my sister, my beloved Mercissa! Now I’ve come to claim your head!”
With that, he breathed out a huge flame, covering most of the arena. Previously moist dirt dried completely and got charred in places.
“Come out you coward! You shall feel the strength of a dragon! I shall turn you into mush and eat you!”
His threats were impressive, knowing his strength he could probably do it.
He spreads his wings, his arms, showing his impressive physique. He had sharp claws on the ends of his hands, sharp fangs glistening from within his maw. A true display of power. Nothing less to be expected from the son of a Dragon King.
“My dear brother! You came too late, I fell in love with Master Zern, he captured my heart and nothing can give it back. Even if you kill him today, it won’t change anything, my love is etenrally his!”
Mercissa plays a damsel, not wanting to be taken back by monstrous brother and leave her beloved behind.
“You don’t get to speak, sister. That lowly human bewitched you to take you away. Only his death will set you free! Where are you little human?! Have you no honor?”
I know that this is my cue. I myself transform into my drake form, covering myself in scales and gaining impressive horns on my head. I also undergo partial transformation internally, giving me greater strength and speed.
My roar is more animalistic than Regios’ but not as powerful, but it has the desired effect.
“You dare show yourself here, in my domain? This is my land, these are my people, she is my woman! You dare come here and threaten me, threaten to take away my Mercissa? You will perish!” My words reverberate around the arena, making the dragon girl blush.
With that I rise at one side of the seats around the arena, Eleanor by my side with a sheathed blade. I reach for the blade and slowly unsheath it and raise above me and with it high above my head, I shout loudly, hoping to reach whomever it is I am asking to grant me power, while activating a rune on the blade, making a bright flash.
“Cthulhu! Grant me your strength!”
Yes, perhaps he doesn’t have a bright and sunny personality like my blade displays, but nobody other than me knows it. With my godly powers activated, I jump down, Feldrazil in my hand, ready to fight.
We look at one another, very similar in appearance, a dragon and a drake. We both have shiny green scales, impressive horns on our heads and sharp claws ready to rip flesh. I don’t have any wings though.
The audience is totally captivated in whatever is happening. They might know that it is all for show, but the duel is going to be real.
Deciding not to wait any longer, I do a medium power swing while activating a rune on the sword. I don’t want to gravely injure Regios, so I don’t go full power. A wave of bright light leaves the blade and charges towards Regios. Wanting to show off his power, he meets it head on, dispersing the energy of my attack. He doesn’t escape unscathed however, his scales seem dented and crushed where the wave met with Regios.
“Gah! So, you have such a powerful weapon? I guess I won’t have to hold back!”
He quickly charges at me, using his claws to try and pierce my stomach. He is faster than me, but he hasn’t really fought in a long time, making him somewhat rusty. I make up for the difference in speed with my trained reflexes.
Parrying his claws on one hand, I try to cut his shoulder, but my blade is deflected by the other hand. He is very fast.
He slashes at me, but my body is protected by a shield, saving me from a deep gash across my torso.
“Using such cheap tricks! You really are a coward!”
“I am no fool to let you kill me with your monstrous strength. Weak races have our own way of fighting those who are strong.”
“Yes, you are weak!”
He begins to swipe at me very fast, too fast for me to counter. His strikes get stopped by the shield, but I feel the power is strained somewhat. Even though it uses my power, which is beyond previous king, it is still not enough to withstand so many attacks from the dragon. As I feel the shield failing, I jump away trying to make some distance.
Regios, not wanting to let me escape, sends a wave of fire from his mouth towards me. I try to dodge it, but my side gets burned as fire penetrates my shield. I feel my hair burning and my flesh cooking from such a powerful flame.
Seeing that I have little chance up close, I start sending wave after wave towards Regios, increasing power each time. He dodges them, so I increase their speed as well. He moves from side to side, faster and faster, coming towards me in zig-zag movement. When he almost reaches me, I send a horizontal wave towards him.
He didn’t expect such development, quickly ducking under it but getting his wings shredded in the process. They are not gone completely, but he won’t be able to fly for a while.
He roars in pain, getting madder.
I jump away, not wanting to be anywhere close to him. He sees my reluctance to fight up close, so he starts throwing spells at me. Fireballs, arcane spears, lightnings, icicles, stone bullets. It takes everything out of me to dodge them, and a few spells that hit me get deflected by the shield, which managed to recharge somewhat.
For a minute he fires his spells, trying to get me. For a minute I dodge them, hoping to avoid getting injured. At some point the shield fails again and I get hit by a rock bullet, making me hit the wall very hard. He clearly didn’t hold back.
As I try to get up, only to see my blood flowing our of my mouth. Well, damn, Regios means business. His rock bullet seems to have penetrated my side. It heals quickly, but it leaves a stinging sensation. It has been too long since something actually penetrated my skin.
With me finally standing again, I see Regios making his way to me slowly, getting ready for some more fighting. He doesn’t want to end it too quickly, and he knows if he just beats me senseless, his sister will be angry.
He gives me enough time to recover. I enter a stance intended for sword fighting and charge at him. He doesn’t get faster, still walking calmly. As I get close enough to strike, I swing my sword, from side to side, wanting to cleave him. Regios catches my sword with his claws, which are hard enough to withstand the hit.
For a few moments, we are locked, trying to overpower one another. He tries to get me with his claws on his other hand, but I move out of the way so he can’t do it easily, as he already has to block my sword and moving around would give me better position.
Neither of us is getting anywhere, so I decide to activate the swords ability I call Piercer, the same one I used at the start to show of Cthulhu’s power. The skill temporarily improves sharpness and hardness of the blade, by using the magic of the runes, artificially extending the blade and making it thin and sharp enough to cut diamonds. With a flash of light, the weapon neatly cuts through Refios’ claws, giving him a nice manicure.
Loosing his claws, Regios roars in fury, mad about loosing weapons on one hand. He can’t block my sword with it or deal any real damage, because only slight stumps left of those previously menacing claws.
His eyes grow red with anger. If I cut him, he would just regenerate, but growing claws forcefully will be a painful and difficult process. Not wanting to be the only one in pain, he decides to share the joy with me. He starts slashing at me with the hand that still had claws, making me parry it, while also punching me with his clawless hand. I can’ too everything at once, so I protect myself from the claws and take a few punches head on, which sends surges of pain through me. He can pulverize rocks with his strength, a few punches easily smash my bones, making loud cracking sound.
I retaliate, by jumping to the side and sending powerful light waves in a cross formation. This requires two very powerful and swift strikes at once, which is hard to pull off, but the power more than makes up for it. This attack is almost impossible to dodge up close and Regios is forced to take it head on. The waves of light make dust clouds form just from the force of the strikes, temporarily obscuring my vision.
When the dust settles, I see Regios, with cuts all over his body, some seem very deep and possibly life threatening to lesser mortals. He stands there, with his hands above his head, a ball of energy formed above him, growing bigger and bigger every second. The only thing that is missing, is him glowing and changing color.
“You foolish human! I will destroy with this one attack. Even weaker dragons will be erased from existence by my power, don’t think you would survive this!”
He might be very mad because of the manicure. Perhaps I shouldn’t have done that. As the attack charges I can feel that the spell is probably going to blow away everybody present. He seems to have lost control and doesn’t want to restrain himself. Knowing that I have to stop him, I take a risk and charge towards him, hoping to get close enough.
When only few meters separate us, the dragon prepares to release his attack. The massive ball is swirling above him, and once Regios points his hands at me, I make my move.
I brace myself, my sword pointed towards the mad dragon, the final and forth rune growing. I pour every bit of strength I have, every little drop of energy within my body to empower next ability. Regardless if I succeed or fail, it is over. Let’s just hope that I somehow manage to stop Regios.
As the massive magical sphere leaves its position above the dragon, it flies towards me, only to explode a meter from its origin. Around the dragons a dome, very much like the shield that protects me is formed. I call this ability Prison, as it allows to restrain somebody within.
As all the magical energy is released, I feel myself stumble and my consciousness waning, but I hold on, doing my utmost to protect the people around us. The magical inferno rages within the prison, wild mana and fire and whatever else Regios puured into that magic all swirling and trying to break out. Moments later, most of the magical power has dissipated, absorbed by the shield and the dragon who is locked within, so I release the power, falling onto the floor, barely staying up on my knee.
Whatever power was left inside the prison rushes out, clashing against my body, hurting me. Now, while I am immune to direct alteration of my body from foreign sources, like trying to control me through telekinesis or mind controlling me, I am not immune to the left over effects of magic. You can’ test me on fire, but you can set a tree on fire and use that to burn me, it works kind of like that. So projectile attacks, although less effective against me, they can still hurt me with enough force behind them. So, the leftover energy from the dragon’s attack singes my scales, turning them dark brown. I still try to stand, but pain assaults me, trying to defeat me.
I stand like that, hoping to see if Regios is ok. He wasn’t hit by his attack directly, even if he was, he should have survived it even in his somewhat weakened state after our clash. The backlash from the attack was great enough to knock him out however. It’s as usual, if you can’ the feat your enemy yourself, make that enemy do the work for you.
He is lying on the floor, his blood cooked and his scales all charred black. He is not immune to magic like me, it has slightly greater effect on him. His wings are mangled, almost completely gone, just thin crispy strands of flesh and bone. Overall, he looks like burnt sugar.
Seeing that result, I raise my arms above my head and attempt to stand up, only to stumble and fall. I just let myself lie, knowing full well people are already rushing towards us with some vials of purple liquid – ZernGara Plus, new and improved potions of super regenerative liquid. It is ging to do wonders for both of us.
As I am approached by Merdien, she pops a cork form a vial and empties it into my mouth. I was thinking that it would taste bad, but it actually is pretty good. It is like a nice cough syrup, slightly sweet and minty. Whatever Nrogara put in there sure makes it taste awesome. I might just have that for as a refreshing drink every now and then.
The same is done to Regios, as to heal his injuries. As he starts to regenerate, his previously charred remains of his wings crack and fall off, only to make way for new stumps of pinkish scale-less flesh to appear. His charred scales also fall off, revealing his inner self, all pink and squishy. Within minutes, he regrows his scales and wings, returning him to his normal looks. Although his wings now gain a slightly more yellow tinge compared to what they looked like before.
We celebrate our victory, with people cheering and trawling whatever they had towards me – flowers, hats, coins, undergarments. The display of excitement cheers me on, making me do victory poses and silly faces at the crowd. In the middle of one of those I am swept off my feet, wind knocked out of me and an almost nude dragon girl sitting on Tom of me kissing me. This was actually our first kiss, I asked Mercissa to wait to settle the issue with Regios before doing anything. Now that the issue is settled, we could do all the kissing we wanted.
Mercissa was inexperienced, but seeing as she was very close to being in her twenties, I didn’t need to hold back because of some redundant moral compass, I sucked on her face like a vacuum, the excitment of battle arousing me greatly. The adrenaline is still in my blood, heightening my senses and making me enjoy this a great deal. The other girls look at us somewhat jealous, but they say nothing. We are fourteen now, perhaps I will be a little more lenient and allow us to go further. Although I wasn’t actually reinforcing any guidelines as of late, I was horny in more ways than one.
We are locked together for a good half a minute, before somebody approaches us. Eleanor comes over with a slight pout and makes me sheath my blade. With both my hands free, I can do some groping, making Mercissa yelp in surprise. The girls, not wanting to let me have my fun, totally not being jealous or anything, all swarm me and pull me away, to announce my victory.
“Zern of the Val tribes, the King of Kernun kingdom has dueled and defeated Regios the Dragon for the right to wed Mercissa, Regios’ sister. From now on, they are engaged, to be wed with Zern’s six intended on the day of his sixteenth birthday”
Elder Karmak announces my victory, excited by the show of power and the awesome duel. People don’t seem to realize how close they came to Pershing just now.
With congratulations all around and people cheering for me, we don’t notice when Regios wakes up.
“You bastard! How dare you use my own magic against me!”
The dragon stands up, looking at me menacingly.
“Yeah? Well perhaps you should have thought better! Who knew that trimming some nails could defeat a dragon? You clearly made yourself loose, when you lost of control.”
“You lowly human dare to tell me how I lost?”
We come together face to face, looking at each other with grim expressions. If we didn’t just almost kill each other, you would think we were about to.
We stayed like that, glaring at one another, until Regios made an annoyed expression and I burst out laughing.
“You damn monkey, you better take care of my sister. If she is ever unhappy, I will have to show her who the real man is by beating you and taking her back.”
“Sure, I will take real good care of her. Don’t you worry.”
With that we grin at one another and come together for a bro hug. People eho didn’t know of Regios were a little surprised by our sudden show of friendship, some even believed his threats to be true. But we were friends now, perhaps even family soon.
With that part out of the way, we proceeded to party. We had a couple of hours to kill before the evening comes and the Rite commences. We gladly drunk some strong beverages. Regios even shared few liquors from his own personal stash. The Lords actually enjoyed seeing him in non official manner and speaking to him, and especially sharing some very rare drinks with him.
It was a good time, eventually coming up to the trial. When the preparations were in place, we got ready for the main event. By that time, the evening sky was darkening, ready to turn to into the night soon.
Once again, like the previous times, I stood in front of a fourteen meters long trail. It was littered with extra hot cinders, courtesy of the dragon Regios. Around us were people with bladed whips and people holding stones. Regios was in that crowd, snickering at me, ready to participate fully. The water at the end was also there, boiling. Somebody, not pointing fingers at scaled assholes, offered an idea of washing me with burning oil in the end, but it was scrapped as oil won’t do much washing.
An extra addition, thanks to Aedim, was a special potion made by elves and dryads. It was something akin to poison, but still had some beneficial effects not to count as one. There were some minor effects, like faster hair growth and better digestion and whatnot, but its main effect was considerable pain throughout my body.
I gulp down the ghastly concoction, feeling the effects immediately. They are short-lived, just long enough to last through the trial. Not seeing any point to wait any longer, I step on to the trail of hot cinders. The Rite was all standard, safe for you times I stumbled after getting hit by Regios.
When I got close to Leah, I once again dropped on my knees and waited for her to cut herself. Taking her hand in mine, I lick her blood, feeling the faint smell of vanilla. Yes, such a wonderful thing. I take in the sensation and then I lick her wound to close it.
The warmth spreads through me and I change, once again without pain. My appendages change and I turn into a furry manly fox. I thought my fur would be orange, like Leah’s hair, but it actually is brown, like my usual hair. In some places, like at the end of my tail and on my chest, it turns yellow with gold. I look like a weird fox. Overall, I am smaller than in any other forms, but instead I am… Elegant? I seem to have very nimble, yet attractive appearance. My muscles are there, but they are smaller, hidden underneath the fur. I still look like a male, broad shoulders, Adam’s apple and such.
As I and others gaze at my transformation, it becomes obvious that some people really like my new form. Few girls get a glossy look in their eyes. When I gained the lion, I was manly, but I was like a royalty, noble and beyond reach. While I looked amazing, I didn’t have the same effect as I do now. It seems like Leah’s charm also passed onto me, making others crave for me. It is sure not a bad thing, but I will have to learn to control it.
As I stretch out, making a few cracking noises and feeling my new body, I notice that my senses became much sharper than before. Each beast form improved them, but I would need to focus to take advantage of them. Now, it’s like my senses extended twice fold without any conscious effort from me. I feel myself drown in all the noises and smells. Now I can understand why Leah is so good at what she does, her observatory skills are beyond normal humans.
I also feel how agile I am. With Lion, I was agile, but also powerful and strong. It was a mix of those advantages. As a fox, I am fully built for agility and dexterity. I know I am not as fast as in my wolf form, but I am flexible and fluid.
Finally having enough of observing my body, I turn to Leah and take her in my arms. She is as beautiful as I am, so we make a natural couple with two of us side by side. It’s like I’m the reflection of her inner self. Only my horns seems a little out of place.
Wishing to share some of my affection for Leah, I lick her face, leaving her puzzled. My beast forms are not meant for kissing or talking, other then the drake form which is very humanoid, so I can’t express my feelings normally.
Now, licking my beloved girl’s face it feels natural, like this is what I am meant to do. I never gave in to instincts before, but now it seems fox has some powerful ones. Incidentally, I immediately reach for a robe, as I feel myself getting aroused. Trying to cover myself, Leah surely notices my predicament and laughs lightly.
“Now, you know how I feel.”
I really do now. Leah always stayed somewhat away from me, now I can understand it. I feel her arousing aroma, her sweat and her womanly musk. We only just turned fourteen, but she is already ready to become a woman. And I feel that, as well as her willingness and perhaps desire to give in. If this is what she felt, even expanded by my inhuman senses, it is no wonder she had hard time pouncing on me. What would she do without meditation?
I try to contain my desires, but to no avail. My manhood is not as big as in wolf or bear form, but it is still pretty sizable. Not wanting to walk around with a bulging erection and poke people with it, I transform into a human. Now here also more changes come. My hair now resembles Leah’s as on the ends they turn yellow and golden, just like her’s. My ears also changed shape slightly, becoming more like that of the elves’. The features of my face seemed to have become smoother, more feminine in some minuscule way. I am still threatening and feral, but some lines of my face became more appealing.
With my change, my senses also dull somewhat, reducing the intensity, but it is barely enough to calm myself down. As my fight downstairs subsides, the beast contained and locked away, I take Leah in a princess carry and walk with her towards others.
People are already cheering and laughing at my success and girls are gossiping about my changes. If any of the Bloodborn weren’t in love with me before, they are now. I can hear them whispering clearly.
We make our way through the crowd and get congratulated on gaining yet more power. I now had the power of all five Guardian Beasts, leaving only the Gargoyle next. I am an impressive existence, completing five trials like it was nothing. My soul sure is amazing to allow me to amass such power and live on.
My influence is vast, people often ask me for advice. The way I do trials has already been noted and young ones try to copy it as much as they can. Some people call them Retribution Rites, as they try to punish themselves in advance for the possibility of hurting their intended. Strangely, it increased the success rates and transformations of people who went through with them. Willpower and conviction must play a great part in resisting the corruption of the beasts.
I attended quite a few Rites as a guest, seeing the trial from the sidelines. It is an amazing feat if you think of it. Walking across the burning cinders, having to endure the pain and the punishment you receive from people throwing things at you. Without training it would be impossible, people,would fail on the first step. It really is impressive how strong-willed Val people are.
Anyway, with the Rite completed, we can enjoy the party. Everybody cheers, drinks and eats, I also enjoy my new overpowered senses. It is truly a day to have a good time. So with that, we dance and brawl until way beyond midnight, celebration extending into the next day. Seeing how we were going to party throughout the month, it didn’t really matter. So, we partied and had plenty of fun.