It’s not a battleground the likes of which you’ve ever seen. A splatter of dead bodies lie on scorched earth, mostly torn off at their limbs, some still alive unwhole. The necrocosm stands with its reach of appendages dark and fume black and eyes neon red. And facing it, the last of my people, I.

Facing it with my beat-up shield, my crusted crimson sword. There’s gashes on my flesh, the deep, lethal kind. But I don’t care. These scars will not heal. Too late to worry about them. What’s at hand is the blackness, and there’s something that has to be done about it. Countless it has taken at the behest of the Snide Banterer. He laughs from atop the arena, sitting with whores in his arms, wine wet on his lips, smoke all around him. It hurt me to see that she whom I loved wholeheartedly once was one of the whores cuddling him. Clearly they’re all under the spell of his banter.

Drunk talk. Blood drunk. Battle swooned.

It roars, bringing with its moan torpor that induces me catatonic.

It thrashes, and the very foundations of this fresh pantheon quake.

It rushes, earnest gale in haste but a gale of night, not of day.

Its heads are many, as well as are its tentacles. In form it resembles the Kaijus, the Great Ones, but this is my personal Great One; the demon siphoned from the recesses of my mind. No mighty morphin rangers are gonna come and fight this fight for me, no hunters of the cathedral; it’s just me and my rusty sword and my will, and all three are faltering at the roar, the thrash, the rush.

Out of nowhere, out of despair is born sudden hope that it blinds the darkness of my mind, a hand holds out from a friend : He possesses me, the One, no other, channelizing in me the strength that I much needed in my moment of sway. The sword glows, the rust falling off of it; the wounds healing up, sealing up; the strength like a jolt quick rooting my feet to the ground. Come what demon may. My broken armor is fusen back together.

The Lord of Miracles, of the Ocean Parter, of the Water Walker,  of the Moon Splitter has come to my help. A force of an entire crowd comes into me — oh, those beloved bewitched of mine, they’ve not abandoned me after all! The Banterer’s banterings had been falling on deafened ears, deafened by magic. My magic. Except my magic is not solely my magic but His, the One.

Light still prevails as it did before night! I rap the hilt of my sword on my shield, root my foot with a hard kick on the earth– and the sound created is the battle symphony of the Bewitcher–, and I spot that my shield too has regenerated to its original splendor. The necrocosm is longer a thrashing creature; It’s a winged fiend, fiery eyed, fiery bodied, and its claws are the cauterizers of some deranged physician. It stomps the ground broken whilst towering me, covering everything with its huge shadow.  No matter how prevalent they seem, shadows are never permanent. I swoop the sword semicircle, slicing at its treetrunk legs. In its power-struggle to cover the skies in its terror, the necrocosm had forgotten about its vulnerable roots: where I had just now sliced it. It falls on its knees, our eyes eye-to-eye, and before I can plunge my blade into his heart I look him in his hell-windows and say, “go back to the darkness from whence you came!” Plunging my sword in him is like spading a spade in a mine: metal in rock. But he’s dead, amidst a thousand screams, he’s no more; his flame now fading embers.

The Snide Banterer, he’s laughing no more. My sword I hurl at him boomeranglike before he can banter his way out of here. He’s been known to do that. He’s the enemy of the One. My whirling dervish blade is guided by magic as it soars through the air hypotenusely, giving the whores around the Banterer a moment to clear away. They do, and before he can even think of following them hither or thither, the blade cleaves him in two. Clean, and yet there’s blood everywhere. Salvation blood. Blood baptism. Sacred is made that which was unsacred.

Thank you Crowd, I say. Forgive me for having lost faith in you for a moment there.

Bewitcher, the thanks is ours to give to you, not yours to us. You stood for us as we now stand for you. And faith is bound to falter. But only so that it will come back stronger.

Ah, well then, you’re welcome. I am not the last of my people, after all.

No, you are not. We are here.

The bloodmoon drowns in the wake of a freed sun. Aurn shifts in his sleep but with his winking/waking eye he makes it known to me that I did a good job. Redemption was mine if I wanted it. But there was work yet needed done. The next enemy lay in wait: Cloud Bewilderer, bewildering clouds to spray acid rain on the village of Laemun.

First I killed the necromother. Then I killed the necrocosm.  Come, and this is not an invitation, whatever evil may next.