Darkness didn’t have hold on me for too long. I wake up, my body in pain, my mind on fire. I feel that nothing good has happened, but opening my eyes, I see that it might be an understatement.
The very first thing I notice is that we are all covered in fine layer of blood and that Giaz is missing. Looking above, I see that few meters up and all around the edges of the crater, there are many swirling, glowing and twisting anomalies, trying to reach us and to consume us.
Next, I look over everyone. I notice that Meriden and Mercissa are fine, my dark flame protected them. They are unconscious, but fine otherwise. Next I see the lamia, Nerliss, who has a black mark on her shoulder. It seems to be decaying, but it also spreads the darkness through her skin. Not a good sigh.
While I am looking around, the minotaur lifts his head and opens his eyes. Where before there were more or less normal eyes, there are now two black holes, voids into somewhere far away. He shows a feral scowl and his teeth has all changed, turning into razor sharp fangs. Around his body coils the darkness, turning him slowly.
I don’t hesitate, I flex my tail and pierce the monsters face, going through his skull. I doubt I could help him. But I can help the others still.
The elf seems mostly fine, only slight grey discoloration on the skin, the darkness has missed him. Good.
I turn around to check on Flaer. My breath is cut short as I see a black gash in her stomach. Fuck. Shit. I pick up the little girl and cradle her in my arms. She is trill breathing, but barely. This is bad. I have to get her out of here. I have to help her.
I try and engulf myself in my dark flames, hoping to purge the darkness from inside her, but as soon as they two dark elements touch, Flaer’s face distorts in pain. No, this is not good. Stop. Think.
For a few moments I think about what to do. I check if the anomalies still ignore the dark element using my tail. It passes through them. Good. I can get two of my wives out of here. I am thinking about picking everyone up, but I remember that my darkness doesn’t engulf the others, not on the inside. The anomalies will be able to feel them. Right, first things first.
I pick up Meriden and Mercissa and create the large flame around me. Then I quickly ascend, flying towards the camp. Everywhere is destruction, darkness consuming everything around us. Anomalies, monsters, death everywhere. By flight it takes me about ten minutes to reach the camp. It is still intact, but is overrun by monsters, trying to kill anybody in there. There were no mages on the way, the ward must have been breached.
I descend in the middle of the camp. Someone runs to me, thinking I am a monster but Regios gets to me first. I put the girls down onto some cloth and turn to the dragon. He sees me and his eyes open up wide. Looking at myself, I see a black hole in my stomach. It goes right through me, opening in my back. I shouldn’t be alive, much less moving about. I notice that I am in my demon form, it must have activated to save me, demons are hard to kill.
Regios wants to say something, but I stop him.
“Not now, Flaer is in danger.”
Hearing it his eyes show fear but he doesn’t stop me. I spread my wings and fly towards where the crater was. All this time I have to be covered with my black flame as anomalies are over abundant, surrounding the crater completely. I descend and see that the lamia has been turned as well, becoming like a giant snake, her mouth opening and trying to swallow the elf whole. I kill her, hoping to save the elf. He is still alive.
Now I have to get out. I can’t carry them like I did with my two fiancées. There must be another way. Should I gave them my blood? But I don’t know how it will affect them if even my darkness makes Flaer flinch in pain unconsciously. This is hard.
I look around, hoping to find some way out. I try digging the earth, but all around us, even the earth has something in it. In one place some acid begins oozing out, which made flesh come off my bone immediately. I don’t feel pain, must be all the adrenaline and my inhumane physique at work. Still, I need an escape plan.
I try to search for something around us, but there is nothing useful, just ruined equipment, the shredded clothes, the sphere from before. Wait, that can be useful. I pick it up and study it, hoping to learn the properties. It doesn’t seem to react to my touch at all. I think about how to activate it and try to feel the darkness inside. It is there and I seem to be able to manipulate it, but I am afraid I can unfold the anomaly and kill the two who are still alive. I drop it for now.
Wait, I can draw the darkness out of them. If I can weaken this vile darkness enough, adding my own should help save them. I try it with the elf first, feeling for the dark element inside him, hoping to reach it with my power. I feel some specks of it, rather tiny, but they are present in his body. Drawing them out, he starts convulsing slightly, his muscles spamming involuntarily. He doesn’t show any signs of pain, but it is still disturbing to look at his unconscious body thrashing about like that. Soon the darkness reaches the skin and comes out. I can’t let it float about, if anomalies absorb it they will grow and consume us. I take it in.
When the darkness touches my skin, I feel immense amount of pain. It is like myriads of needles piercing my skin all at once, trying to dissect my body. I feel both on fire and frozen, my nervous system goes into shock. Not even adrenaline can help me here. All the darkness has left Felmier, his body returning to normal color, but my body is now being assaulted by the foreign darkness. It is trying to overtake me, going straight for my soul. It converges on the blue light inside me and the two forces clash, sending agony through my being.
I drop on the floor, rolling around, bleeding. Having a hole in my stomach doesn’t help. For a moment I feel ok, pain receding and I am able to stand up, only to fall over again on my back. For a few seconds the pain makes me writhe around and then it lessens quickly. I take a few breaths, trying to calm myself down. My heart is beating like crazy, pumping the blood around my exhausted body.
I can feel the foreign darkness concentrating around my stomach, which I don’t have right now. Is it trying to recreate it?
I look at the gaping hole in my midsection and see that the sphere is in there, absorbing the darkness. It also drinks in my blood and sprouts some fleshy tendrils, hooking into my body. This time there is no pain, I don’t feel my flesh ripping apart or being repurposed.
I wait for a minute, trying to regain my strength. The attack on my soul was draining. After the little break I look at the sphere again. It seems to have mended the hole and grew into my body, becoming one with it. The new change to it is that it begins glowing with blue light, like my demon soul. I try to understand what it does and it seems to be collecting the darkness and purifying it. I don’t know how it does it, but it’s not important right now. I need to save Flaer.
Looking at her, I see her wounds growing, trying to if next her, she was hit by a considerable force, but she is a dragon and she is strong. I will have to suck in all the darkness from within her. Whatever little bit was in Felmier, it was just residual leftover from the strike I received, Flaer has the actual darkness from that entity. Just thinking of it make me shiver, the power and the size of it, it is beyond me, beyond any of us. I am afraid of it. But, this is not the time, I have to save Flaer.
I get myself ready and begin channeling the darkness out of her, firstly, any darkness that has spread from her wound returns to it and then it begins flowing from it towards my stomach. I direct it there, hoping that whatever the sphere does can save me. For now the darkness doesn’t seem to cause any pain to me, so when it all leaves Flaer’s body, I try to heal her using my blood. I bite my hand and let her drink it. She is unconscious, but it seems to be enough to trigger transformation. Her body is engulfed in black fire and lighting, transforming to become like me and Mercissa. She goes through it, still out of it, not regaining consciousness. I will have to hope she wakes up soon.
There was a considerable amount of the darkness and it was very concentrated. It seems to be so powerful, it darkened the blue glow coming from the sphere. I try to feel what is happening and I find that the darkness almost reached the centre of the sphere, where the glow originates. The foul power touches that point and the pain assaults me. Right, my demon power must be there.
I fall on the ground again, trying to withstand the agony, but before the pain reaches unimaginable heights, I pass out.
Now I am in a vision. I know this feeling, but it is different from when I was the dark God Gargoyle, there I was watching through his eyes, but now I am free to move around and to think for myself.
Around me, there is darkness. Above, on all sides, it’s just empty, endless void. Below me is also darkness, but it seems to be gelatinous and glossy, although there is no light sources here.
I look for anything else but find nothing. Not having anything better to do, I spread my wings and fly up. I fly very high, there doesn’t seem to be a limit. Out there is nothing, just the same darkness without end. I stop and look around me, and it seems to be the same, until I look down. At large distance away from me, down below the blackness ends and turns into pinkish white color. It makes a circular shape, the black circle being extremely big, miles and miles across. It almost looks like a… Pupil?
This is freaky. Did I just walk on something’s pupil? And what must be this big, to have eyes of that size? The situations unnerves me. Hoping to prove myself wrong, I fly higher and higher up, trying to see what it really is. As I ascend, I see that it really was a giant eye, the black pupil and the white of the eye. The higher so fly, the more obvious it is. The size of the thing makes me feel very nervous, but the next though sends me into panic.
It is focused on me. I am right in the center of the damn thing. I try to fly left, but the more I fly, the thing doesn’t seem to move, or it moves, but stays the same relative to me. It is centered on me. Fuck. This thing, just what is it?
Flying even further away, I can see that the eye is bloodshot, veins of different colors showing on the surface of the white parts. I don’t know how high I’ve been flying, but this thing seems to be as large as a planet. I must be a couple kilometers up and I still can’t see anything but this freaky eye.
I fly around, but being constantly follow makes me feel worried. This thing watches me. It knows I am here, it looks at me, it studies me. I can’t escape it. There must be a way. I dash towards the side again, hoping to make it stop looking at me. I follow the curvature of the eye, wishing to find the place where it will be stopped by the eyelid. My nerves are at their limit. This is too much.
I fly, fly and fly. I don’t know how long, minutes, hours or years, but suddenly I notice it. The eye is disappearing, the edge of the eye being covered in darkness. I look at it using my enhances senses and as I come closer I realize that its body is made of darkness, that is its eye lid. I did it, soon I will be able to hide from its gaze.
As I fly closer, I realize something else. The body of this thing is of slightly different color than the darkness around me. I can hardly tell the difference, but it is there. I push my senses to the limits, bringing out my fox power. And then it hits me. All around me there are two colors of blackness. The empty void and the darkness of this thing. The tendrils are coiling around me, parting to let me fly through and reforming behind me. Everywhere I look, there is this dark cloud. It’s like a dark nebula, an endless collection of black smoke, concentrated around this eye. The closer the pupil gets to the dark eyelid, the more I hope it will finally stop looking at me. I have to escape it. The stare. The massive eye. It’s too much.
When I can almost feel my victory, when the pupil is almost covered, leaving me to myself, the darkness of the body parts, once again revealing the pupil to me. I can’t take it. I scream, letting out my fearful, hopeless cry. This is too much for me. This void, where there is nothing but darkness, no sounds, no light, no people. The eye is looking at me, gazing at my puny form. I can’t run.
Seeing my display of weakness, the darkness all around me starts shuddering slightly, in rhythmic movements. It is laughing at me. It thinks I am funny. It thinks it is so much more powerful than me. But I will show it. In my stomach there is something that can consume you. I will consume you.
I dive towards it, flying down, gaining speed as much as I can. I feel the darkness and I pull it towards me, but there is so much that it is I who is being pulled. No matter, it is perfect. I will eat you, I will stop you from looking at me.
My speed is enormous, flying downwards like an arrow, I soon reach the surface and dive into it, making the eye dissolve into the darkness, parting the dark clouds, making them swirl around me. I begin draining all of it, making sure it will never be able to look at me.
Yes, it works, the black mist flows towards me, being sucked into my stomach. I take it all in, not caring for the pain. My body spasms from all the vile energy that I consume, but I continue, draining the energy, making sure to never see that eye again. I can feel victorious, my triumph is evident. I smile and finally relax, myself being alone in the darkness.
But I am not. The black mist around me shudders again, laughing. I scowl at it and suddenly I feel it. The gaze, at the back of my head. I turn to face it, but there is nothing. I growl at the darkness and once again I feel the sensation of being watched. I turn towards the new location, but there is only black smoke. Again and again, I feel the stare, but when I look there is nothing.
I eat all the darkness, my body long dead from the pain, completely covered in the vile smoke. I don’t know how am I still moving, but I continue onwards. After hours of this torture I give up and scream at my powerlessness. I can’t win. When the darkness hears me, it laughs again.
There, in the distance, too far for me to ever reach a giant eye forms. On my right, something moves. An eye is formed. Below me, too far for me to reach, another one. All around me, the darkness twists and turns into countless eyes. Looking at me, staring, watching me. I can’t win.
I scream and cry, shout and thrash about. I consume all the darkness, but there is always more. I slowly dissolve in the darkness, watched by the eyes, my consciousness seems to be fading. I don’t understand anything, only seeing the eyes wherever I turn. There is no escape. There is no triumph. There is no peace. Only the eyes. I can see the eyes, all that there is are the eyes. I myself dissolve into the darkness, my body slowly turning into the black smoke. I feel it consuming me, turning me, reforming me. I can feel my new circular body, floating in the darkness, looking. I am an eye…