Mayhem-- Wraith's Lament: Mayhem

Published Aug 14, 2021, 12:57:30 AM UTC | Last updated Aug 14, 2021, 12:57:30 AM | Total Chapters 1

Story Summary

Icefang 12627 and her rider, Morgan, take on the Rhakos, Mayhem.

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Chapter 1: Mayhem

Morgan slides Icefang’s bridle over her head, adjusting the straps two notches looser and then two notches tighter. The leather slips smoothly through the buckles. The wounds on Icefang’s flank are hardly healed, the skin sealed with a hasty application of magic from an exhausted mage.

Morgan never resented his lack of ability in the magical arts more than now.

Icefang stood quietly through Morgan’s efforts, allowing him to strap the tack to her without a single flinch or complaint. 

“I’m so sorry, sweetheart,” Morgan whispered as he cinched her girth.

The Rhakos incursion was unrelenting, allowing no time for rest or recovery at any step of the way. The moment one of them was handled, the next popped up like a nightmare fair game.

Icefang’s coat and wings were speckled with fresh scars and burns, remnants of the rhakos’ desperate, corrupted struggles to resist capture. Time to eat, visit a healer, and snatch a handful of hours of rest had been the best they’d managed for nearly four weeks.

Now, barely an hour after the start of their shift, Morgan and Icefang had been called to join the force managing a new threat.

A tan, ram horned rhakos who was prowling the docks, tearing out of the shadows to drag away unsuspecting merchants and dockworkers. Its location hadn’t been pinned down quite yet, but it seemed to be terrorizing the northern side of Sol’s docks.

Morgan had roused Icefang from her sleep a handful of minutes ago, and the lycan had been sluggish but willing as Morgan gently tacked her up and strapped her battle talons on. Icefang’s low-hanging head nearly had Morgan reporting them as recovery only status, but she’d perked up enough during the tacking that he’d relented and not flagged down an organizer.

Barely a half hour after they’d woken up, Morgan and Icefang were ready for battle.

The docks were a tide of fire by the time Icefang winged her way over the port. Morgan leaned low over her neck, his spear tucked up underneath his arm. The smoke burned his eyes, licking up around in acrid curls as icefang swept over the decimated ruins. Icy sneezed, shaking her head as she glided well above the chaos.

The rescue teams swarmed over the port below, picking through the wreckage and extracting survivors. Stryx wielding ice breath abilities tamped down the fires, swathes of frost cascading over the ash and flame.

Icefang brought her own breath to bear as she and Morgan skimmed past the rescue crews. The rhakos was still on the loose-- its corrupted form contaminating any stryx or person it managed to sink its teeth into. 

Icy was more than familiar with the objective of these hunts-- find and eliminate the rhakos threat. She barely needed direction from Morgan as she picked her way through the billowing pillars of smoke that the rhakos left as a trail of carnage behind it. Glowing red, corrupted wisps flocked densely around points where the rhakos lingered longer. Between lycan and rider, they tracked the rhakos itself down to the point where its trail ended. 

Mayhem, as common dialogue had named it, prowled low below the raised docks of the high tide Sol port. Its glowing corruption was blatantly visible from the low flight path that Icefang had taken at Morgan’s direction. With a hint of a leg signal from Morgan, Icefang swooped low, spiraling down through the pillars holding up the docks. She breathed deep, summoning the chill within her breast. The lycan’s freezing core swept across her form, sending frost spiraling across her saddle-- and up across her rider’s coat.

Morgan was more than familiar with the lycan’s powers, and simply hunched down deeper in his coat. He dropped her reins and threaded his fingers through the thick fur across her scruff, leaning low down and averting his face from the oncoming blizzard. 

Icefang snapped her glacier - like fangs, her maw yawning wide as she twisted sharply around to make a second pass by the glowing red corrupted rhakos. With a deep breath, she pulled back her head and let the power within her flow through her breath. A storming wind of icy, frost- chilled wind blasted through her mouth. The raging winds consumed a broad swathe of the sand, ripping up across the pillars and the dock like an unstoppable force of nature. The rhakos screamed, the corruption in its body melting only a tiny fraction of the oncoming blizzard as it tried its best to resist the power.
    But it wasn’t nearly enough to resist the lycan’s power. The frost overwhelms the lycan and the entire doc, freezing it in place in an insurmountable storm. Icefang crows a long, high howl as the rhakos freezes midstep. 

Morgan hollers, cheering and raising his fists.

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