Updated: Aug 23, 2021
Into Crypts of Iniquity
Brynn wished he had more men with him. Not many, just a few. The best. Warriors. His Brethren. He knew the men he wanted. Or rather, he had known them. The terror of campaigning on the spiteful continent of Pelgarod once more clenched his heart in its habitual icy clutches. He bit his lips. To refrain from howling in madness at the horror confronting their stupefied minds, as well as to prevent his jaw from trembling. The men he wished were now beside him, to guide him, to make some humour out of this disgrace to the command sorcery could have over nature, had all died alongside him on previous campaigns. He needed their great experience and stolid presence. Now, the men here were looking up to him for those same qualities. This being his first adventure as leader and captain of a quest into the sinister realms of the foreboding land mass, lair and kingdom of the dreadful enemy. He had to keep a grip. Before them lay the object of their exploit, an immense marble brooding crypt of the Lord Incubus Hollowshale, foremost among the Demonic Warlocks. Primary mage of the Circle of Seven. An evil coven of powerful sorcerers fallen into the folds of bleak, illicit witchcraft. Each one bent upon their collective purpose of gaining complete dominion over all humanity. To this forsaken place these ready warriors had ventured to destroy the monstrosity presently laying recumbent within the pillared, marble hall before their appalled stare. Brynn and his men were a raiding party of the War-isle. Men known as the War-bred. Bastard warriors born in the city of Arken's brothels, who chose to leave society behind at adolescence to pursue a tough life of adventure amongst the famed fraternity of freebooters. A well-respected, tight-knit, independent troupe of men, only bound by a code to protect the trade shipping of the empire they sprang from, by virtue of constant campaigning against the enemy, in exchange for regular supplies of all their needs. These men endured a rigorous lifestyle and instruction regime to stand as one among the companies of famed warriors. Each man became, through harsh yet necessary years of preparation; determined, adept, bold, resolute in their brotherhood, and absolutely committed to taking the fight to the enemy. Yet not one of them presently beside Brynn had ever expected to see anything as repugnant as the abomination holding their revolted fascination. They had talked and wondered as to the nature of the Brood-Mother, but no amount of imagination could have prepared their minds for the repellent sight burning itself into their memories with each heartbeat spent regarding it. "By the stars, we're in Hell now brethren." Hissed Omarif, Brynn's second-in-command, without turning his head. "Let's just do what we came to do." Brynn spat through gritted teeth. The entire continent of Pelgarod was referred to as Hell by the War-bred, due to the existence of a continuous knife-edge between life and death screeching down a man's nerves once he set foot there. A landscape of death. Every plant dangerous, if not deadly. All the natural creatures encountered were venomous, aggressive, menacing and hostile. Nine of Brynn's company had already succumbed to such endings on this mission, with another sixteen killed in combat against the guardians of the crypt they now stood in. Yet all the dreadfulness they had acknowledged formerly paled into insignificance in comparison to the revulsion offered by the disgusting nature and appearance of the Brood-Mother they had come to destroy, now they could behold her in the form Hollowshale had created to propagate his demonic seed. "How?" Omarif's query resounded from the walls, echoing away into a silence thick with expectation. His tone rang with the awfulness of the prospect. It told of the consternation the men felt as one, while each contemplated the grisly reality of the final act demanded of by the solemn oaths they had made to complete this present quest. Brynn considered the question, finding no obvious answer within himself. "However we can, with what we have." He growled. "Let's have at it." "Death is the only thing to be done here. We must finish this dire work." Omarif, abhorrence dripping from his words, said to warriors he knew stood trembling with anticipation and repressed nausea. Brynn nodded and moved closer to the horrendous ruination of nature that lay before them. The thing had the head and upper body of a dark-haired woman, although of giant proportions, the head itself being roughly five-feet high from chin to brow. The elongated chest had numerous pairs of breasts, each lower set larger than the pair above. The torso towered over them, erupting from a massive abdomen, many yards in length and width. A profoundly shocking sight, the belly had no hair and white, veiny skin, hugely oversized, stretched and extended out of all proportion. Useless legs, mere stumpy protuberances, flopped either side. A horrible array of ugly and deformed sexual organs in various stages of stimulation ran down the abdomen. Pulsating, jerking and shuddering with a constant round of warty, ejaculating members being thrust into grotesque, eager vaginas. The male organs ran along each side of the abdomen, aiming and thrusting at the row of female organs running down the centre. All were of the most horrible appearance and proportions. The rear of this repulsive, pulsating, bloated bag of writhing tissue seemed to be filled with inseminated embryos, in various stages of development. Dozens of twitching, glowing lumps writhed around inside the enormous bulk of the sickening mutation. A living factory of damnation, created by immoral use of forbidden sorcery to produce armies of Grim warriors. Simple autonomons Hollowshale used to wage his wars. Before Brynn's men, no-one had lived to bear witness to this sight. Even as they stood there, the creature kept up its sickening rhythm of arousal and climax. Without a word further, Brynn stepped forward and swung his massive glaive around in a big two-handed arc, cutting deep into the blobby folds of the baggy abdomen. The head appeared to gasp at them, having previously been drowsy and unaware. Now the eyes opened and the jaw began to move. The rest of the men hacked into the yards of flesh before them, becoming covered in blood within seconds. Large sacks of twitching, undeveloped forms rolled between the men's legs as they set about their ghastly task. Some stabbed at these until the twitching inside stopped. Men waded in gore so deep and so foul they knew none of them could ever talk of it to another who had not been there, without seeming to be a madman or a fool. One warrior found a way to clamber up a pillar and cut the throat of the creation before the mournful cries of its sad demise drove all the men to madness. He made the mistake of looking into it's beautiful, sorrowful eyes, holding her dying gaze for a few moments as the others stopped their dank endeavours and looked on. Then, flinging his sword aside, the cut-throat ran screaming out into the jungles surrounding the great temple complex, driven insane by the shock of coming face to face with the true nature of horror on Pelgarod. He had allowed himself to look into the tortured, deeply loving soul of the creature and feel the searing, unbearable pain of its corrupted, unnatural existence. * The frantic journey back to the coast became a headlong, pell-mell rush within an hour of the grisly deed. Drakes, Mandrakes, Manticores and Hell-hounds came for their blood first. These being among the swiftest of all the terrible beasts Hollowshale could send to wreak his dire retribution upon them. Men were picked off left and right, Brynn could do little more than maintain enough discipline to keep those remaining alive in concert for the duration of their rolling, tumbling escape to the coast. Using pre-set rafts and fast rivers, they made the return in three days, although these were the longest days of their lives. Filled with hazardous, sleepless hours, while being assailed and attacked with little respite, all along the way, from the land, air, and water. Only a handful of them made it to the coast unscathed. Scores were left behind, dead. The campaign had decimated the company. A costly, yet without doubt, a worthy victory. * Looking back at the dark landscape from the comforting, creaking decks of his warship, Brynn felt glad not a single man more had had to suffer the sights and sounds his men endured during the definitive awful act of their bloody campaign, despite the fact of its success. In particular, those men he had wished for when he first encountered the object of the quest. Men he had admired in life who perhaps would have been changed forever, their humour smitten from their breasts, had they been party to that terrible memory. He sighed, thanking Omarif, who handed him a brimming jar of frothing ale and a lit pipe, which he started puffing on with enthusiastic vigour. Blowing the perfumed smoke through his nostrils whilst holding onto the rail in the growing ocean swell, Brynn considered. Hollowshale's plans would be disrupted for some time. The Demonlord would need a new Brood-Mother, housed in a fresh and evermore secret crypt. This would take time. The unambiguous, highly-aggressive and swift campaign had ensured no great moves could be made against the Empire for a couple of years at least. It also demonstrated to the enemy a vulnerability to being hit hard and struck deep before they even knew it. Brynn puffed away again, letting the mild narcotic effects of the ale and herbal smoke combine to allow his mind and soul find some pacific balance from the whole experience. He had long understood his vocation involved some unspeakable and filthy work. The water sloshed and the ship swung on the waves, mixing his becalmed sensibilities with each yard sailed farther away from Hell, gently eroding the profane images and tormenting sounds from his mind. A mind which, toiling and brewing with it all for hours, finally reached a conclusion he would adhere to for the remainder of his days; Some things must forever remain secret.
Copywrite Francis Pendlebury 2018