Legends of Cobalt

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Arguments in the Dark

“Why is this one empty?” Phebes jabbed her thumb at an empty case.

“Father gave that sword to Benjamin before he left for Spinel.” William replied, “Every weapon in this room has some sort of enchantment or blessing that makes them better in combat. Can I tell my damn story now?”

Wyanet cocked her eyebrow. “I am curious how your people allowed this evil to spread and destroy this land?”

“Twenty years after Duke Highbrance founded New Horizon; Duke Boguslav Sofka, his son Iliya Sofka, Great-Grandfather Miles I, and grandfather Miles II set out from the Archipelago. They landed in Crescent Moon Bay and established Spinel. Three years into settling the city, Duke Boguslav died and Iliya succeeded to his throne.”

“Everyone knows how succession works,” Olivia scoffed. “You got me out of bed in the middle of the night to recount history that everyone from the peasants to the lords knows?”

“I’m getting there.” William rolled his eyes. “A few days after Duke Boguslav died, Duke Iliya adopted a little girl.”

“What’s weird about that?” Bucephalus took a step back toward the stairs. “He opened his house to an orphan, that sounds like a noble and godly act to me.”

“Three years after? Are you sure?” Olivia frowned. “Duke Iliya would have been fifteen.”

“Exactly.” William tapped his nose with a finger and pointed at Olivia. “Outside of a handful of courtiers and the serving staff, no one knew she existed. But, things get even more strange from there.”

“Let me guess,” I asked. “She tortured small animals?”

“No, but close. Things started small. Duke Iliya ignored some minor duties to spend more time with the girl. Then he became controlling of everything and ferociously protective of the girl. After that, servants started to disappear. Never in large numbers, but any servant that displeased Duke Iliya or the girl was never seen again.”

“That doesn’t mean something bad happened to them,” Phebes looked at me. “Does it?”

I shrugged.

“Two years after she arrived, great-grandfather witnessed her kill and drink the blood of a serving boy. Great-grandfather snuck away unseen. He ordered his family to pack their things that night. The morning after, great-grandfather confronted Duke Iliya at court. He demanded the girl be arrested and executed for murder. Duke Iliya laughed in his face. That afternoon, great-grandfather quit Spinel and headed North with his full house and a few hundred upset villagers.”

   “I am confused.” Wyanet asked, “Where did your family gain the ability to change into wolves?”

“Everything is muddy around that part,” William sighed.

“What we were told growing up,” Olivia interrupted. “Our great-grandfather found a wolf’s print filled with water in the mud. He was thirsty and drank the water from the mud.”

“According to our great-grandfather’s journal, the night he fled he swore to the gods he would come back and destroy the evil in Spinel. While he dreamed that night, an angel of the Raven Queen visited great-grandfather. The angel offered him the power he would need to stop the vampiric plague from spreading. The angle also warned that accepting the power would also curse all of his descendants to the same fate. Great-grandfather accepted the power without a second thought and the angel led him to the paw print.”

“That makes more sense than a nobleman drinking mud,” Olivia nodded.

“How are we supposed to help lift this curse?” Phebes looked around the room. “The vampire is in Spinel and we’re in Vercingetorix. Besides, it’s not like Nellie is the same vampire from Spinel. Is she?”

“For centuries, Nellie as you call her, has been trying to spread her plague as far as she can. Vercingetorix, my family, and the lesser nobles allied to us have held back the corruption for nearly a century.” William continued, “Last spring a plague ravaged the area we control which limited the number of crops we could sow. The year before that, the supernatural weather destroyed almost all of our crops. We won’t survive a third winter with the food we have left. Father and the people are growing desperate. We need to take some sort of action. If it destroys all of us, at least we tried.”

“Is that why father sent Benjamin South?”     

William nodded. “He wants to end the entire miserable affair. He sent Benjamin to meet a handful of warriors and kill the enemy once and for all, but they failed.”

“And you want us to go finish the job?” I asked.

“You somehow managed to hurt the enemy enough to make them run away from you. If we press the attack now, we could kill the enemy in their home soil and rid the world of it forever.”

“You want us to fight her, again?” Phebes’s alabaster complexion paled. “We barely beat Nellie last time.” She burped and clapped a hand to her mouth. “My mouth still tastes like bloody vomit.”

“The enemy is weak. If you leave before sunrise, you have a chance of catching her before she can recover.” 

“Why not raise an army and claim Spinel for yourself?” Wyanet asked, “Is that not how your politics work?”

“The plague weakened my father’s possibility of calling an army far more than he cares to admit.” Olivia confessed, “Even if we could gather an army, we lack the food, water and money to do it. That doesn’t even get into the violation of the multiple treaties creating a rebel army would cause. Vercingetorix is still a fiefdom of Spinel. If we failed in the assault, our bloodline would be wiped out and no one would stand in Nellie’s way.”

“Don’t you have friends, or a pack, or something to do it yourself?” Phebes pleaded.

“Father would never allow it,” William replied. “After Benjamin died, he put me on a short leash and won’t let me out of his sight.”

“You want us to fight a nigh-unstoppable, evil, little girl.” I marched up to William. “To put our lives on the line, to lift a curse from your bloodline. You ask us to die like we’re your subjects and you haven’t even known us for a week.” I stepped back to Phebes and Wyanet. “You don’t even offer anything in return. Nellie is stronger than us. Last time we fought her, we had three more people. One of the said people was a wizard and another a Dragonman of Drako, and we still lost. I don’t even have a sword anymore.”

“I’m not asking you to fight alone.” William took a small step toward us. “The enemy is weak, but I need time to gather more friends and allies, which I have to do in secret. You don’t need to kill the enemy outright. I’m asking you to put enough pressure on the enemy and their followers for reinforcements to arrive and finish the fight.”

“No,” Bucephalus snorted. “I’ve been down there already. I’m the last survivor of an entire company of holy knights, divine clerics and blessed warriors. Whatever half-cooked plan you have will fail and we will die for it. The only thing we should do right now is get me back to the Isle of the Gods. I’ll tell my superiors in the Inquisition everything that happened to me and is happening here. The Cardinal Conclave won’t ignore this evil. They will send a holy army to eradicate all the evil here and liberate those that evil has enslaved.”

“They’d murder my entire family.” William waved Bucephalus away. “Besides, how long would it take for them to get here? One month? Two? A year? My people are suffering now. We have a chance to finish this, and we can’t afford to wait for some saviours to rescue us. We have a chance and we have to take it. If we win, we’ll be written as heroes for the rest of history. If we fail, well… we can’t afford to fail, so we won’t.”

“Tell me, Father.” Olivia rested her hand on her brother’s elbow. “If a cock breaks its wing do you slaughter the hen for supper?”

Bucephalus puffed out his chest and crossed his arms. “Minotaurs don’t eat meat, it’s bad for our health.”

“That is the voice you are asking us to make. Nellie is at risk, but you would rather take an action that will kill the people who are trying to help you. The Inquisition is not known for its principles of nuance.”

“Your cowardice astonishes me.” Wyanet’s lip curled in disgust. “You would sacrifice the lives of thousands to protect your own. Are those the teachings of your gods? If they are, then your gods are cruel beings who deserve to be thrown from their thrones.” Wyanet turned back to William. “I will help you however I can.”

I clenched and unclenched my fist and bit back my frustration. “Guess that means I will too.”

Phebes reached for my hand, missed and wrapped her arm around mine instead. “I’m staying with them.”

“You’re all suicidal.” Bucephalus turned towards the stairs. “I’m not going. I’m going to find a way back to the Isle of the Gods and save Crescent Moon Bay the right way.” Bucephalus stormed out of the room.

William smiled. “I figured at least some of you would agree. I took some time this afternoon and secured you a ride further south. You can leave whenever you are ready.”  

The story will continue, July 30th,  2020.

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Written by: Sweeney (@oceansoul316 on twitter)

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Legends of Cobalt

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Vaulted Secrets

I snapped awake and grabbed the hand descending on my mouth. I pushed my assailant’s wrist as far as it would go and a little further. I kicked back the sheets, forced the attacker to the ground and planted my knee in their back. I dug my knife out from under the pillow. My attacker tried to throw me off. I shifted more of my weight onto their back. The point of my knife rested against their spine.

“Who are you? what are you doing here, and why shouldn’t I call for a guard?”

“Percy, it’s me. It’s William.”

I removed my knee and levered my attacker into an armbar. I shifted my knife to their throat and whispered the arcane word for light. William shielded his eyes with his free hand.

“Put that out, someone could notice.”

I let go of William’s wrist and snuffed the charm on my knife. “What are you doing here?”

“My father hasn’t told you the full truth.” William got to his feet and adjusted his shirt. “Get dressed. There is something I need to show you.”

“Why are you going against your father’s will?”

“I know you heard our argument. Which means you know I don’t agree with his lordship’s methods. Hurry up the others are waiting downstairs.”

William waited by the door while I pulled on my trousers and a shirt. We tiptoed through the dark house and stopped at a set of double doors. The doors opened into a dome-roofed room. Shelves crammed with books and artefacts lined the walls. A balcony circled the entirety of the room. Candles flickered in the centre of the room. William showed me to a set of iron stairs that spiraled to the floor below. 

Plush rugs ran between the shelves on the main floor. The soft glow of the candles guided us through the labyrinthine network of books. Wyanet, Olivia, Phebes and Bucephalus waited around a large table at the end of the maze.

“Why did you bring us here in the middle of the night, brother?” Olivia tapped the end of a cane against the stone floor.

“Calm down and I’ll get to that, sister.” William circled around me. “You can fill Benjamin in too when he feels up to it.”

 “Can I take the same option?” Phebes laid her head on the table. “I’d rather be asleep.”

“Unfortunately, no. Time is essential and in short supply.” William stopped beside the bust of a sour-looking old man.

“Get to it.” Bucephalus pulled a flask from his pocket and took a swig.

“Lord Tiarna has only given you -us- half-truths. Only he, Benjamin and now me know the full extent of his lies.”

“Of course you,” Olivia snapped. “He’s always favoured you and Benjamin over me, even more after mother left.”

“You don’t know the half of it, big sister.” William twisted the head of the bust. “Let’s head into the vault. You’ll believe me down there.” William plucked a candle from a sconce and pulled on it. The floor around the table dropped away and shifted themselves into a staircase.

“What is this?” Olivia’s gasped, “I’ve never seen this before. It isn’t even on any of the old building plans.”

“That’s because our great-grandfather wanted it kept hidden. He and grandfather built the vault in secret with the help of a few other lords.”

“Great,” Bucephalus drained his flask. “More dark narrow tunnels.”

“I will never understand why your leaders keep so many secrets,” Wyanet shook her head.

William handed a candle to Bucephalus. “It’s not bad down there. There has never been any undead in this house.”

Bucephalus took the candle. “Let’s get this over with.”

The stairs ended in a spacious room with a low ceiling. Candles flickered to life as we entered. Large portraits hung above various weapons cases. A tapestry depicting a pack of wolves running through a forest dangled from the front wall.

Phebes toyed with the lock on a weapon case. “What is this place?”

“This is the Tiarna family vault. This room contains the massed wealth,” William pointed to a stack of seven identical strong boxes stacked in the corner. “Our most powerful magic heirlooms and our true family history.” He stepped back from a pedestal supporting a large leather book.

“Why did you bring us down here?” Wyanet asked.”

“Because we’ve been keeping secrets for too long. With your help, I think we can finish what my great-grandfather set out to do. Great-grandfather cursed himself and his future bloodline for one purpose.”

“What do you know?” Olivia Limped towards the book. “Great-grandfather didn’t know what he was doing.”

“That’s what we tell each other, but it isn’t entirely true.”

I moved in front of Bucephalus. “Your whole family are werewolves?”

“Yes,” William nodded.

“No,” Olivia contradicted. 

“Come on, Olivia.” William rolled his eyes. “She’s close to puberty, that’s when our wolves surfaced.”

  “She hasn’t shown any signs of either transformation.” Olivia puffed out her chest.

“You’re in denial. You know as well as I do it’s a matter of time. She won’t be a little girl forever.”

“She might not have the trait. Father is insistent that it is based on our bloodline. The curse could have skipped her.”

“Since when do you listen to the old man?” William shrugged, “It doesn’t matter anyway. Father turned mom before Benjamin was born. He wanted to be sure all of us were the same as him.”

I stepped closer to the bickering siblings. “Are you talking about Ophilia?”

William and Olivia glared at me.

“She said something about her wolf this morning.”

“Can we return to why you brought us down here?” Wyanet insisted.

“I agree.” Bucephalus’s horns scraped the bronze ceiling. “As fun as it is to listen to you argue, I’d rather get a drink or two and go back to sleep.”

“Right,” William replied. “Olivia, you can read the book later, but I’ll tell you the important parts now.”

The story will continue, June 25th,  2020.

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Written by: Sweeney (@oceansoul316 on twitter)

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Creating original content in an online space is a time-consuming process. If you find it in your heart, please donate a few dollars at the link above. Thank you, you are appreciated!

Show us your fan art at us with the hashtag #CobaltLegends on Instagram and Twitter for the chance to be featured on one of our posts.

Legends of Cobalt

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Morning Arguments

“This wouldn’t have happened if you let me go with them!” William’s muffled shouts roused me from a dead slumber.

“You don’t know that! You can’t know that!” Lord Tiarna’s elevated volume snapped back, “I’ve already lost one son to the enemy, I can’t afford another.”

“I might not have stopped it, but they would have known what they were fighting!”

“It wasn’t worth the risk! How could I have known the enemy was here? If the general public finds out about the enemy, our enemy, it would be chaos. Thousands would die.”

“Thousands would die? As opposed to the thousands who are already dying? Do you even hear yourself? Your secrets nearly killed that Elf girl. Fredrick, a man you’ve raised since his childhood, is alive through divine intervention. Olvia, your own daughter, sleeps on the brink of death because your misogynistic ideas don’t even let you include her in your secrets. Secrets I only know, because they killed Benjamin.”

“Don’t you use his death as a weapon over me. Olivia made her choice. She’s old enough and strong enough to protect herself regardless of what I tell her or not.”

“She can protect herself? Right, that’s why the enemy that she didn’t even know existed managed to almost rip her throat out.”

“Remember your place, boy! You will listen to me and follow my orders. I am your father and your pack leader, you will show me the respect I deserve.”

“What if I don’t? What if I challenge everything you order me to do? What are you going to do? Kill me? Banish me? I might live a long and full life if I’m not around you.”

A door slammed followed by shattered glass. The soft feather bed and warm blankets beckoned me back to sleep. The japes of the argument below me continued to play in my head and kept me awake. I sat up in the bed letting the blankets fall away. The brace of cold air hitting my bare skin silenced the blanket’s siren call. 

I could feel someone or something in the bedroom with me. I slid my hand back under my pillow and closed my fingers around the hilt of a dagger. I moved my eyes about the room, looking for what made me uneasy in the clouded twilight.

“I’m sorry,” A young girl’s voice chirped. “I didn’t mean to wake you up.”

My heart started racing. My eyes darted around for the source of the voice. “You didn’t wake me up. It’s hard to sleep when people are shouting.”

“They woke me up too.” Ophilia stepped out of the pool of black shadow beside the wardrobe. She clutched a cloth toy to her chest. Her bare toes poked out from under her oversized nightgown. “It’s scary when daddy and Will fight.”

“Do they fight often?” I loosened my grip on the dagger.

“Not before Benji left. After Benji left, daddy made Will help him more. They think I’m dumb and don’t hear them, but I always do.”

“And you run in here to hide?”

Ophilia nodded. “You’re the first guests we’ve had in a while. Normally this room is empty.”

“I’m sorry I intruded on your hiding place.”

“That’s okay!” Ophilia smiled, “You’re a nice adult, like Livie. You brought some new friends for me to play with. You can come here anytime you want.”

“You’re very fond of your sister, aren’t you.”

“Yup! Livie and Will and even Fred all teach me fun stuff, like hunting and fighting.” Ophilia flexed her non-existent muscles and dropped her toy. “One day, I’ll be big and strong like them.”

I stifled a chuckle. “I can already tell you’re going to be one hell of a fighter.”

Ophilia’s face lit up. “You really think so? Livie’s and Will’s lessons are funner than the history and manners lessons daddy forces me to take.”

“Fighting was always my favourite too. Can you tell me the name of your dog?”

Ophilia snatched her stuffed toy from the floor and clutched it to her chest. “It’s not a dog, it’s a wolf.”

“My apologies. It’s hard to see in this light. What is the name of your wolf?” 

“Benjamin,” Ophilia whispered into her feet.

“Did you name him after your brother?”

“Uh ha. Benji gave him to me before he left. He told me he might not be back in time to meet my wolf, but this way I’ll always have him with me.”

“Your wolf?”

Simon wrapped his knuckles on the door and let himself in. He carried a lamp and started lighting the candles around the room. “Breakfast will be served in an hour. Your clothes have been laundered and mended as we speak. A fresh set of clothes will be provided to you until yours are ready.” Simon spotted Ophilia in the centre of the room and gasped. “ Lady Ophilia, what are you doing here? I do apologise  if she disturbed you, Master Percival.”    

“It’s alright, Simon, Ophilia didn’t disturb me.”

Simon wagged his index finger at Ophilia. “Your governess is frantic searching for you, my Lady. Come with me. It’s time to get you cleaned up and ready for your daily lessons.”

Ophilia groaned and walked toward Simon.

“Lady Ophilia,” I bowed my head to the girl. “I enjoyed our conversation this morning. It was quite informative.”

Ophilia smiled and curtsied. “I hope we get to talk some more, Mister Percival.”

Simon placed a firm hand on Ophilia’s shoulder. “Do not miss breakfast, master Percival, your attendance is required.”

Simon marched Ophilia out of the room.

***

Wyanet, I, and the rest of our party filed into the dining room. Lord Tiarna sat at the head of the table with Will in the first seat on his left. The two chairs on Lord Tiarna’s right sat empty. The five of us claimed chairs around the opposite end of the table and a servant spooned thin porridge into bowls in front of us.

“Does anyone want to tell me the exact details of what happened last night?” Lord Tiarna gulped from a large gold goblet.

“The part where a ghost-witch tried to kill us, or the part where your daughter turned into a wolf?” Wyanet shoved her porridge away.

Lord Tiarna leaned into the arm of his chair. “How could I have possibly known there was a vampire there? The church told everyone that vampires are extinct. If I had known one still lived, and in my city nonetheless, I wouldn’t have allowed my daughter to go with you.”

I turned in my seat to watch Lord Tiarna. “You didn’t know the enemy had come here?”

William leaned back in his chair and hid a smile behind his hand.

Lord Tiarna stared into me, the corner of his mouth quivered. “What was that?”

“The floors speak.”

Phebes scooped a spoonful of porridge into her mouth. “It’s a good thing Per-ow!” The table jumped a few inches and she reached down to rub her leg. “What was that for?”

Bucephalus scowled and shook his head.

“You can trust me with secrets, Father, you know my daughter’s affliction. I trust your discretion in reporting it to your superiors, and I hope you can trust mine.”

Bucephalus kicked his chair back and leaned on the table. The table creaked and flexed under the minotaur’s considerable weight. “It’s funny, my company came to Crescent Moon Bay to hunt down a pack of Lycanthropes.”

William slid to the edge of his seat. “We’re all friends here. Let’s not be hasty.” 

Bucephalus pulled his chair back and sat back down. “But we’re not in the business of political assassinations.” 

Simon breezed into the room and whispered into Lord Tiarna’s ear.

Lord Tiarna tossed his napkin onto the table. “We will continue this when everyone’s tempers have cooled. William, we have business to attend to.”

The story will continue, June 18th,  2020.

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Written by: Sweeney (@oceansoul316 on twitter)

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Creating original content in an online space is a time-consuming process. If you find it in your heart, please donate a few dollars at the link above. Thank you, you are appreciated!

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Legends of cobalt

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Blessed Light

Percy bashed the side of Nellie’s head with Bucephals’s war hammer. Light flashed from the impact and Nellie tumbled across the floor. Percy turned and walked toward her.

“You are supposed to be extinct!” Nellie lunged toward Percy.

Percy blocked Nellie’s claws with his sword. He twisted the war hammer in his hand and drove the spike into Nellie’s ribs. Light flashed again. Nellie screamed and pushed Damian away. She tried to fly away. Percy slashed his sword across Nellie’s back and black blood splashed the stone floor.

“Wy, where are you?” Phebes cried, “Wy?”

“I am here.” I pulled myself across the floor with my good arm.

“What’s that light I keep seeing?”

“It is Percy. He is fighting Nellie.”

The giant wolf whimpered and crawled toward Fredrick.

Percy flapped his magic eagle wings and flew into the air. He flew after Nellie and cut her off. Percy threw all of his weight behind a double strike. Nellie fell back to the ground, her bloody and bruised body smashed several benches. Percy flew toward her like a hawk. He pinned the little girl’s body to the ground with his sword.

Phebes coughed up blood. “Is he winning?”

“He is for now.”

“That’s good.” A bubble of blood popped from her lips. “At least someone will live.”

I tried to crawl faster. “We will all survive this.”

The vibrating snap of breaking metal echoed off the walls and roof. The dyed glass windows shattered and swarms of bats flew in. The bats flew in a tornado around Percy. He swung the war hammer and the bodies of dead bats littered the floor. The bats flew away from Percy and out the broken windows.

“Where did those bats come from?” Phebes coughed.

I closed my fingers around her hand. Percy landed opposite me. He fell to his knees and closed his wings around us. Percy cradled Phebes’s head like a child and rested his other hand on the wound in her stomach.

“Hey,” Phebes whispered. “The wings are cool. When did you get those?”

Light flowed from Percy’s hand. Phebes’s breath grew more steady and came easy. Without warning, Phebes rolled onto her hands and knees. Blood filled vomit sprayed the floor from her lips. Percy ran his fingers through Phebes’s hair and held it away from her face.

Icy, necrotic pain shot through my arm and I winced with the pain. Percy closed a hand around the wound in my arm. Light flowed from his hand again. A calm warmth washed over me like a hot spring bath in winter and pushed the creeping cold of death from my body. Percy let go of my arm and I rubbed the healed skin where Nellie had slashed it.

“Go help Bucephalus.” Percy rubbed Phebes’s back as she spat more blood onto the floor.

I shifted back to my knees and stood up. “The dragonman is in poor shape. I do not know if he will survive.”

“Go ahead, I’ll be…” Phebes vomited again.

“I’ll see what I can do.”

***

I inched towards the unconscious body of Fredrick. A bear-sized wolf sat by the dragonman’s head. A low growl emanated from its throat. I kept my hands in front of me and knelt beside Fredrick. I extended my hand to a slash wound in his clavicle. The wolf flashed its teeth and barked, but let me proceed. Radiant light flowed through me and into Fredrick’s scaly flesh. After a brief eternity, Frederick’s chest expanded with air. His eyes fluttered open and he jolted up missing my head by a hair’s breadth.

“Lady!?”

  “Easy, everything will be alright. We’ll find her “ I put my hand on his chest and lowered him back down.

The wolf licked Fredrick’s cheek. He met my gaze and Fredrick’s eyes rolled back. The wolf stood opposite me and licked my face from chin to eyebrows. It laid back down and rested its head on Fredrick’s chest. 

I rocked back onto my feet and looked around the ransacked sanctuary. Phebes continued to heave and vomit blood. Wyanet’s stout figure supported Bucephalus’s hulking frame. Jacquelin rocked back and forth in a ball towards the altar. The young woman from the island comforted Jacquelin. The woman smiled at me, nodded, then vanished. The radiant wings on my back faded and I felt colder after they vanished.

“Where’d the blood-sucking bitch go?” Bucephalus limped toward me with Wyanet’s help.

I helped Phebes back to her feet. “I don’t know.”

“I bet she ran away when all those bats got here.” Phebes clapped a hand to her mouth, her eyes opened wider. 

“It doesn’t matter. We need to find Olivia and get out of here. It’s going to be a long walk to anywhere safe we can rest.”

“She is here.” Wyanet glanced back at the wolf. “ Can you heal another person the way you did for Phebes and Fredrick?”

“I don’t think so. I used all of my power on the three of you.”

Phebes pushed me away and vomited again. “By the Wildmother, the Winter Maiden and the Dawnfather, when will this stop?” Another torrent of red vomit shot from her mouth.

“I can still do something.” Bucephalus pushed Wyanet away. “Where is she?”

Wyanet pointed to the giant wolf guarding Fredrick.

“We came here to hunt down a pack of lycanthropes, and here I am working with one,” Bucephalus chuckled.

The wolf bared its fangs at Bucephalus then batted its snout with its paw. The wolf whined and twisted. Its fur fell away and its snout retracted. The wolf’s paws grew into hands and feet. Thirty seconds of crying and contorting metamorphosis transformed the wolf into Olivia. She sat naked on the floor, her body covered in pink slash marks.

“That won’t be necessary, Father.” Olivia covered her chest with one arm and lifted Fredrick’s head into her lap with the other. “My wounds heal faster than most. Although, if you wouldn’t mind, could someone please find me something to cover up with?” 

I unclipped my cloak and draped it around Olivia’s shoulders. A sharp, shrill, tin whistle blasted into the vestibule of the sanctuary accompanied by the sound of splintering wood. A chorus of matching whistles accompanied the first in the damp night air throughout the city.

“Took them long enough.” Olivia struggled to her feet and held the cloak closed.

I offered my arm to help hold Olivia up. “Who’s here?”

“Before my wolf took control, I managed to get a message sent to the constable general for help.”

Dozens of men and women wielding short clubs and daggers flooded into the sanctuary through the doors and broken wall. A woman with iron-black skin and vibrant eyes pushed through to the front of the constables. A heavy stone club and a sabre hung from her belt. Epauletts dangled from the woman’s shoulders. 

“What happened here?” The constable general’s voice sounded more like tumbling rocks than human speech.

“We found a cult, and came to break it up and got beat up instead.” I pointed at Olivia with my thumb. “If you don’t believe me, ask her.”

“Constable General,” Olivia smirked. The Constable General and the surrounding constables snapped to attention. “My associates and I need a ride back to my manor.”

The story will continue, June 11th,  2020.

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Written by: Sweeney (@oceansoul316 on twitter)

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Legends of Cobalt

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Failing Light

Nellie slashed through my shield. Her claws dug down to the bone in my arm. Icy, necrotic pain pulsed through my veins. Nellie shoved me to the ground and stepped over me. I crawled toward the rows of benches on either side of the walkway. 

Damian attempted to stab Nellie. She caught his sword. Damian countered with a spinning kick. Nellie grabbed his ankle and hurled him across the room. 

Phebes shot an arrow at Nellie. Nellie flew at her and pierced her hand through Phebes’s gut. 

A line of orange light streamed out of Olivia’s stick. Nellie burst into flames. She hissed at Olivia and threw her through a wall after ripping her chest open.

The Dragonman screamed and took a deep breath. Nellie jumped on him and a bolt of lightning shot from his mouth into the roof. Nellie tore at the Dragonman’s face, neck and chest.

Jack hugged her knees to her chest and cowered beneath a statue of a woman holding a sword and a key.

I whispered a prayer to the spirits and wrapped my fingers around my tattered arm. The healing energy of the spirits stopped the bleeding and fixed the rotting flesh, but the muscle still ached. I ignored the throbbing pain and pulled myself towards Phebes. She gasped for air in a growing pool of blood.

A slender wolf the size of a bear padded through the hole Olivia made. The wolf kept its head low and bared its teeth. It circled Nellie, a growl in its throat.

I pulled myself up and braced my back against the benches. A warm light glowed where Damian had landed.

“The bitch appears.” Nellie climbed off the Dragonman and stomped on him. “Your brother tried to fight me alone too.”

The wolf barked and sprinted at Nellie. Nellie flew into the air as the wolf lunged for her throat. The wolf stood on its hind legs and knocked Nellie back to the ground. Nellie slashed her claws across the wolf’s face. The wolf yelped and jumped back.

Nellie hurried to her feet and attempted to fly away again. 

The wolf snarled and closed its jaws on her ankle. The wolf shook its head back and forth and threw Nellie like a squirrel. The wolf ran over and pinned Nellie to the ground. Nellie struggled against the beast’s weight. The wolf snapped its massive jaws at Nellie’s throat.

The glow from the front of the room grew brighter.

***

Warm water lapped at my skin. The boiling sun beat down on me and the salty breeze tousled my hair. I sat up and looked around. White sand beaches trapped between an emerald forest and an aquamarine ocean stretched as far as I could see in either direction. Gentle music drifted from the trees and played with the steady rhythm of the tides. Overhead, an albatross called to the world.

I stood up and the warm sand begged me back. I studied the tree line and spotted a smooth stone path winding into the jungle. I took a last look at the ocean and followed the winding stone path. Monkeys chattered and played around me. Birds sang their sweet songs and flitted about. A monkey carrying a mango scampered onto the path ahead of me and offered me the fruit before running back into the trees.

I continued walking along the path. The sun never changed its position. I came to an open-air temple deep in the jungle. Waist-high flower beds filled with blue and white flowers surrounded a small pool at the base of a gentle waterfall. A woman close to my age sat on a stone bench with her feet in the pool.

“Hello, Damian.” The woman patted the bench beside her. “Or do you prefer Percival?”

I sat down beside the woman. “Where am I?”

“Right now,” The woman took my hands in her warm, soft ones. “You are standing in a cathedral, preparing to attack a dangerous vampire disguised as a child. Your friends and allies lie bleeding around you. One of them has little time remaining before she meets the Raven Queen.”

An image of Phebes getting stabbed filled my mind. “Why do I remember this place?” I waved my hand at the temple and the jungle around us.

“This is my home. This is where I and many of my followers come to find peace. We are safe here.”

“Why am I here?”

“I needed to speak with you and my time is limited. You must return to your friends soon.”

A harsh voice in my head shouted something I didn’t understand and punctuated with a crack of lightning. I jumped to my feet and looked for the source.

“Damian.” The woman slipped her warm, tender hand into mine and pulled me back to the bench. “Your father has unlocked a dormant power that has hidden within you for many years. I wanted him to do so sooner, but now you need that power to save your friends.” She took my face in her hands. “This power will allow you to accomplish great things, but it will also turn you into a beacon for darkness.” She pulled me to my feet and kissed my forehead. “I couldn’t be more proud of the man you are and will become. Now go, your friends need you.”

I stepped into the pool up to my waist and turned back. “Who are you, and will I ever see you again?”

The woman smiled back at me the way a mother does a frightened child. “My true name and the names of my kin aren’t known in your world anymore. On Cobalt, I am called Everlight. As for seeing me again, I have been by our side for many years. Our paths have crossed many times already, and they will many more. Until they do, Damian, go with my blessing.”

I slipped my head beneath the surface of the pool and a flash of light blinded me.

***

    “Damian?” Phebes coughed and a line of blood ran down her lips. “Please. Wyanet? Where are you guys?” Her tears mixed with her blood. “Please, I don’t want to die. Not here. Not alone. Please guys, where are you?”

“I am here, Phebes.” I fell to the ground and crawled to her. “Save your energy, I am here, we will be fine.”

Nellie braced her feet against the stomach of the wolf and kicked it away. The wolf landed on another bench, smashing it. The wolf got to its feet and ran at Nellie again. It closed its jaws on her arm and smashed her against the floor. Nellie dug her claws into the side of the wolf and pulled. The wolf yelped and dropped Nellie. Nellie hit the wolf with her other hand. The wolf whimpered and backed away.

“I am sick and tired of adults ruining everything.” Nellie closed her hands into fists and battered the wolf’s head. “And your family is the worst!” 

The wolf collapsed and tried to crawl away from the child.

Nellie grabbed the wolf by its scruff and rolled it over. “You mutts are strong. Maybe if you lived longer you could beat me.” Nellie put her claws on the throat of the wolf. “But there is one thing you need to win that you never have.” Nellie tightened her grip. The wolf whimpered and tried to break loose. “Your pack.”

Percy walked up behind Nellie. Eagle wings made of pure light grew out of his back and his eyes glowed with a warm radiant light. In one hand he carried his sword and in the other, he held Bucephalus’s war hammer.

Percy smashed the hammer into Nellie’s head. Light burst from the impact and tossed Nellie away. “I don’t need a pack.”

The story will continue, June 4th,  2020.

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Written by: Sweeney (@oceansoul316 on twitter)

https://ko-fi.com/sweeney

http://bit.ly/2tUG9va

Creating original content in an online space is a time-consuming process. If you find it in your heart, please donate a few dollars at the link above. Thank you, you are appreciated!

Show us your fan art at us with the hashtag #CobaltLegends on Instagram and Twitter for the chance to be featured on one of our posts.