Wrath, the Bow of Rage
My fingers ache with inexpressible energy. The bones crack in a grip, the skin shaken with lumps of shadows that I know to be of the Void. But what of this burning sensation deep in my black veins?
The light around me recedes, leaving behind a trail of gray mist that blurs the surrounding environment. The time for it to clear is minimum. And when it does, I recognize this place as the Black Chasms.
The Boundless Flame is here.
I proceed away from the remnants of the light and meet a naked being with an unbalanced stature. Smothered in scars, short hair of gray hue, and pitch black eyes. Features that clearly indicate whom I see.
He bows before me “Welcome back, sister.”
I smile, “Death. Such a pleasant sight you are. What took you so long?”
He straightens up and chuckles, “Same as ever. Sorry for the delay. I was a bit preoccupied with some guests here.”
“This is the chamber of the Boundless Flame. I can assume the Necrelim.”
“Indeed” he replies. “Well fought. Tedious at times, others tiresome and maddening. But it was worth it, little sister.”
Whispers and roars interrupt the exchange. Death glances behind me, leading me to do the same. Two more clouded figures emerge from the light, both naked as well. One built with hair of black fire and full red eyes, the other skinny and bald as can be with glowing green eyes.
A smirk presented itself on my expression, and I now feel myself to be complete yet again. Not just the bond but the power between us. But there is something there, something indescribable. I cannot quite put my finger on it.
But I linger on this ascending feeling no longer. Death and I bow to the other two as the light concludes its presence.
“Hello, brothers” I calmly speak.
“Sister” they bow to me then nod towards Death, “Brother.”
I look into those red eyes and hiss, “War. How lovely it is to see you again.”
He steps towards me and puts a hand on my shoulder. The whispers follow his voice, “And we you, Wrath.”
War steps away to greet Death while I walk over to the other and touch his bald head, “I’ve missed you, Swarm. It’s been far too long.”
“It has, sister” his voice tailed by multiple roars. Touching my hand, he continues, “Malice and disease, such pleasantries. This one has missed it all.”
Screams interfere in our reunion, shaking the walls of the Chasms “Enough of this distasteful gathering. The Bloodborn have work to do.”
“Very well. What does the Calling of the Void command of us?” I ask, staring into the blank space above.
“The Alsern and the Damric. Stop them from falling. Balance must remain.”
“The Old Ones… Falling?” I’m slightly confused for a moment but it does not take long for the matter at hand to register. “Why would they perform such an act?”
“Life” the Calling replies. “Life is what they desire.”
“They seek to create life” Swarm cuts in. “What foul goal do they plan to achieve with such calamity. Do they know not of the balance of existence?”
The Calling answers, “Which is precisely why they yearn for an end to our reality. The balance is all they know. Creating life will give the task of equilibrium to others; they tire and falter.”
“What do you propose we do?” I ask. “Our previous encounter between the Old Ones resulted in the slaughter of our old bodies. Such a shame too. I loved that body.”
The Void howls, “Then I suggest you gain no attachment to this one, Wrath. You may hold the power of the Flame in your veins but the task ahead holds no guarantee to persevere.”
Though the Void is demanding, I could not resist the words he speaks. This is what I have been feeling since reawakening. That strange and disguised sensation in my blood is the gift of the Boundless Flame. What madness could’ve overcome Death to use the purity of the light? We exist for balance, not personal gain.
I turn to Death in disbelief “You used the Flame for our return?”
Death remained unaffected by my question “The Void demanded it. Why, I do not know.”
“Such power can—“
He interrupts “Corrupt. I know of this. This was not a decision I considered lightly but my will is that of the Void. I cannot resist what it demands.”
“It is only a matter of time before we undergo this corruption” I hiss of what my brothers already know. I look to the empty space above the Chasms and speak to the Void again, “This is sheer lunacy. The capacity of the Flame rivals that of the Old Ones. Why should we not persevere?”
“Your brothers may survive this, Wrath. But you, however, will most likely not.”
“Dare I ask…” I hiss for an answer that I am sure of what is to come.
The clouds of the nothing above shift to form a single entity, “Your task is to seek out your previous destroyer, the First of the Alsern, Elthstor. We know him as the God of Retribution and Atonement.”
“And what burden must I bear when I unearth the First?”
“Do you not know? Wrath is the Bloodborn with subtle abilities. Use your rage to gain favor.”
I know of which it speaks. My resurrection is of no attachment to the Void; simply a pawn in this game. But to implement my prowess will cost me more than I can comprehend. This opposes our purpose yet I cannot assemble myself to speak otherwise. Is this the corruption settling? Or is it the bidding of balance?
I continue “But to do so will more than likely result in the passing of this body.”
The Void speaks uncaring, “A necessary loss. Now seek out Elthstor and exchange your mind with his own.”
Wrath, the Bow of Rage
What nuisance awaits me before I exit the expanse of the nothing. On one hand, I have the fate of the balance resting heavily on my shoulders. On the other, a great offering of myself to said balance. Dying is easy; it’s residing within the emptiness afterwards that comes despicable.
Such misery I find it to be. Hollow as the edge of the Black Chasms and no fulfillment for the decay I undergo after a passing. It’s just myself speaking of nothing but an illusion I’ve used to stay my rationality. Oftentimes, I would search for my brothers, gradually lingering about howling their names without a voice.
The Calling of the Void still screams to me, not literally but in memory. To exchange my mind with Elthstor remains beyond my comprehension. The previous time I exchanged with another being, I was trapped in the foul body for years. But to try with one of the Old Ones? A grasp of unbelievability.
“Do you doubt the Void?” the Calling questions. “Your mind is open and free for the viewing. A simple task cannot trouble one such as yourself.”
My body carries me through the dark valleys leading to the portal between dimensions, known as the Orbalyss Galito, the Gate Within the Abyss. On the other side is the Luminesce Plateaus, home of the Alsern and where they walk about to exhibit their profound power amongst the lesser including the Bloodborn. An expanding city of gold and silver shining bright under the light of infinite stars.
I ignore the words of the Void and concentrate on this constant rising power inside my blood. I do not fear the corruption. But I cannot embrace the unexpected. I already feel myself changing mentally and physically. What has the power of the Flame done to me?
Before I realize, I find myself standing before the portal. A ring of light and shifting sparks encircling a waving visual representation of the Plateaus.
Reminding myself of what shall occur, I look back to the nothingness of the realm, gathering it all in. I do not fear the Alsern or the Damric nor do I cower in the presence of any exceeding my greater ability.
“This must be done. Otherwise, life will begin” The Void reminds me. “Do not fail this task given to you.”
I walk through the portal, the familiar touch of shifting between dimensions engulfing my skin and newly found armor. My eyes squint at the sudden appearance of bright light from above. The city itself reflected the shine of the stars showering its elegant essence, some towering structures glowing brighter than others.
My eyes adjust quickly. But this sudden urge to begin chaos suddenly plagues my settled mind. This power flooding through my veins is overwhelming and I feel myself beginning to lose control of my better impulses.
A voice I do not recall strikes me, one I know not of the Calling of the Void. It’s far deeper and greater. Something about it is troubling yet comforting to my changing thoughts. What is this entity?
“They rule because it is certain and live because it is demanded. The life they seek is easy; the life they live is difficult. This is when Wrath decides to control or walk.”
“Who are you?” I whisper.
“We are you. Your deepest instincts that reside beyond the reasoning. We have always been, we have waited, we have decided.”
“Is this of the use of the Flame? Is this what is happening to the Bloodborn?” I ask, pulling my staff from my back. “Is this corruption?”
“Is it corruption? Or is it native? There is no distinction. The Flame has simply rallied who you are within. What lies beyond us is of no consequence.”
“But…” I pause to collect my thoughts. “Why would the Bloodborn need control of the First?”
“Have you not figured it out? The Void does not seek balance. It strives for final dominance. The tasks given to you and your brothers are of no mere coincidence. Life is not the end of balance, but the beginning.”
“I do not know what to do. The Bloodborn have always existed for balance. We have served the Void since our birth, yet I do not understand what is asked of us. Why am I so conflicted about duty?” I grip my staff in both hands, dropping my head in confusion. “Is this corruption changing me before my very eyes? I cannot see it.”
“Change is emerging. You will lose what you are now and become something greater. But within all beginnings comes malice and shadows. Embrace it because it is inevitable.” The new voice fades, leaving my thoughts hollow.
This power is taking over and behind it is the corruption. The Flame itself has changed the Bloodborn. I only wonder what is becoming of my brothers and how they fare with this upcoming transformation.
Pain randomly consumes me. A burning sense peels at my skin, my mind is shifting towards a dark place, and my eyes light up with hunger. The gray area between the light and darkness becomes desolate.
The Void is absent of me and my purpose. We have been used for far too long to endure such tenuous atrocities. I exist for myself, my brothers, the balance, and the power of the Boundless Flame.
I smirk at the sight of the golden city. It’s lustrous reflection seemingly quiet as the nothingness between dimensions itself.
I stab my staff to the ground, summoning hundreds of thousands of black tendrils around me. They wave about in the clean, crisp air that blackens under the now dimming light of the stars.
I will obtain control of Elthstor, not for the Void but for start of true balance.
With his infinite power, I will help life begin. With his mind, I will see over the Alsern. With his body, I will annihilate them all.
Wrath, the Bow of Rage
The sky darkened fast under the darkness of my full unleashed capabilities. The tendrils gathered to form monstrosities of my own making, most of which I do not identify. The light dissipated completely, showering the city of silver and gold in a blanket of shadow. From above and within, the structures disappeared into an unending gloom that reshapes the matter of the Plateaus.
Xalthariel, Goddess of Absolution and Forgiveness, attempted to stop me. But the power of the Flame in my veins proved her efforts futile and foolish. Her presence mirrored my own in strength and cunning, but she was narrow minded. Eyes set upon merely myself, she was oblivious to the tendrils surrounding her. My success to fell one of the Old Ones proved my power worthy of godhood.
Preparation has met perfect opportunity.
Her fall summoned worlds in the vastness of dimensions. With an Old One given over, life is beginning to form itself. I knew it would not take long before the Calling of the Void screamed its severe anger towards my disobedience.
“What are you doing?! This is not what was asked of you! Worlds have formed from this treachery! You exist for balance!”
I smirk as more black tendrils emerge from my staff, “And balance will prevail.”
“You are allowing life to become!”
“And life will come. Balance will begin with creation. But I will destroy the Alsern and prove that I AM WORTHY!”
“You are giving the Gods and the Eternals what they seek. Do not disobey the Void!”
I let out a long deep breath, “I no longer serve.”
Ignoring the Void’s demanding manner, I proceed towards the innermost area of the golden city.
Only the weakest of the Alsern were willing to face the new power of the Bloodborn. Where have all the others wandered? Surely with such a noise, the others would appear in the blink of an eye.
Some time passes before I reach the silver glass temple in the center, all whom are well aware that this structure is the home of Elthstor. The city behind me is flooded with the darkness ushered from redesign.
And yet, still no sign of the Old Ones. The shadows follow me to the doorway that required little effort to shatter. Inside rested a rather large gleaming orb that prevented the darkness from moving further inward. I know not of this manifestation, but I can feel it in my bones that Elthstor is not too far.
My mind hisses at the recurring screams of the Void. Such a worthless entity that bawls like a newborn for my lack of cooperation. The Bloodborn do not answer, a trait that it can sense from beyond the portal.
The feeling grows stronger; not of the power but of the First of the Alsern. He is here.
A soft and confident voice speaks, “What is a Bloodborn doing wandering the Plateaus? Not lost, are you?”
I turn around to the former to see Elthstor standing calm and firm amidst the black tendrils that separate in his presence. Smothered in absurdly brilliant armor and a small winged creature I do not recognize resting upon his shoulder, his expression is unsettling and calm. But I do not allow such presentation to faze one like myself.
I am a God now. I fear not.
I huff, “Lost… Not lost but found. I found exactly what I am searching for.”
“I assume you mean myself?” He says before the small creature leaps from his shoulder and flies back outside with a soft roar escaping it as it does so. “Why would Wrath search for the First of the Alsern? An unscheduled greet indeed. I feel this will not be pleasant.”
I chuckle and firmly grip my staff in one hand, “Oh, correct you are, your grace.”
Elthstor discards his cloak, fully displaying his armor underneath. He unsheathes a large silver blade from his hip, immediately pointing it in my direction.
“I sense something different of you. I feel… power. Great and inconceivable power” He squints his eyes to focus. “What have you done?”
“Resurrection. I was brought back with the power of the Flame.”
“The Bloodborn used the Boundless Flame for personal gain? Monstrous!” He shouts with a shocked expression. “You were to only exist for the balance. With what the Alsern and the Damric seek, this is sheer chaos.”
“The Bloodborn ARE the balance. And this is how it will begin” I conclude my end and direct my staff to the First. “With your mind for my control.”
State now solemn, he reconfigures his stance and asks “Shall we?”