The Worldeater Saga, Part XLVI: The Genesis of Virulence

Genesis unveiled above the Lich Scriptorium, a newly formed Deity stood directly before the Progenitor God’s outstretched claw, Its emaciated figure writ stark before Its Creator as Abhorash brought the crushing weight of His authority to bear upon His Fledgling God. A wave of the Hegemonist’s hand brought a deluge of blood ascending from the Lich Scriptorium; crimson plunged into the new God, entwining about Its exsiccated shell to paint a tapestry of engorged veins, bloated and sanguine, each bloody conduit pulsating with a frenzied, uneven beat. These veins, saturated with ichor the hue of deepest crimson, writhed and twisted, constricting the Deity with the shackles of Its Creator’s dominion.

As the would-be bonds of vassalage settled upon it, the Pestilent God emitted a sickeningly wet scream of defiance, ripe and infested with the promise of myriad diseases. Hostility seethed thick all around It as a cocoon of pure malaise enveloped Its sunken frame, turning mien etched with virulent voilence towards Its Creator. Abhorash’s surprise at this defiance lasted a mere instant, the opportunistic predator acting first. ‘Wings’ of spiderwebbing veins erupted forth from the vampiric God’s back, tendrils flaring out to form a crimson aegis silhouetting Him.

Then they struck, a perfectly coordinated mass of twining helixes that pierced and bound – some sliced into Divine flesh with unrestrained violence even as others enslaved, spiralling chains of constriction. Despite the ferociousness of the attack, Virulence betrayed no hints of vulnerability even in Its inceptive state. The God’s cocoon melted into swarms of locusts that plunged into the streamers of blood assaulting It. Each vein convulsed in agony as its purity was tainted by countless afflictions, crimson receding beneath necrotic black. Disease then rapidly flared back towards the Hegemonist, borne upon the conduit connecting Gods.

Scant seconds before plague found Him, Abhorash severed the connection, a twisting shrug of His shoulders casting aside His bloody ‘wings’ as their now-black veins faded into motes of perverted essence. Though the Hegemonist had escaped this threat, the opening was not wasted by Pestilence, new God surging forward. Its arms melted and reformed, noxious fumes hissing from blighted ichor wreathing the now-bladed appendages that reached hungrily for their Creator.

Already in the throes of His twist, Abhorash managed to divert one bladed arm to a glancing blow scored along a pale cheek; the immaculate sword of hilunite caught in His orbit flared to parry Pestilence’s other blade, clashing with a thunderous crack that sent blighted mist suffusing the battle from the violence of the impact. Though a mere glancing blow, sickly green and black scribed their marks upon the snowy canvas of Abhorash’s cheek, death and rot proliferating from the ingress upon Godly flesh. With frenzied urgency, Abhorash’s Tyrannical aura bled from the Hegemonist, manifesting His power in a crackling cloud of Blood and Divinity all about Him. Needles split off from the amassed nebula, plunging into the infected wound; eschewing subtlety, the cleansing force scoured all in its path, purging diseased flesh in swathes of annihilation.

Ruined face now writ with naked fury, Abhorash hurtled forward with unrestrained impetus, His very existence distilled to unleashed threat. Birthed to fulfil this very mandate, however, Virulence flowed with Its Creator, glistening tentacles erupting from Its bald pate to lash at the advancing Hegemonist. Just before impact, Abhorash burst apart into a cloud of mist; tribute to His vampiric heritage, the particles of the God’s mistform weave through the treacherous forest of tentacles, the deadly cloud carefully evading direct contact with the biological weapon He hurtled towards.

The mist blew untouched past Pestilence, rapidly coalescing into the vampiric God once more behind His adversary. Taking solid form, Abhorash descended upon Sapience’s newest God; overwhelming pressure washed over the realm as He assumed the mantle of violence, thundering blows rattling the firmament. Each strike of the Hegemonist’s fist unmade His creation into a thousand fragments before Divine essence stitched It back together, Abhorash revelling in His sport as Pestilence was rent asunder and reformed countless times.

Lost in Abhorash’s brutal assault was Virulence’s severed blade – shorn but not destroyed, it rose unnoticed amidst the clash of Gods. Spectator for a mere second, the appendage inserted itself into the fray, finding a place squarely in the back of the rampaging God. The instant contact was made, Abhorash’s cape whipped about, borne upon His crushing aura. It enveloped the blade securely before crumbling inwards, neutralising the threat as both plunged into a burgeoning tear in reality, abolished from existence.

This momentary distraction was all Pestilence required to recover; echoing Its birthing scream, a haze of virulent toxin spewed forth to envelop Its Creator. Abhorash’s aura rose up to meet the tide, coiling about Him in a protective barrier. Despite the shield, the force of the assault sent God plummeting down, pinned by the seemingly endless flood expelled from Virulence’s cracked lips. Witnessing the dire situation, Abhorash’s Empire began to chant.

Myriad were the voices of Aetyra, Akarn, Anuul, Aren, and Azvameth, invocations uttered in eerie unison. Blasphemous fell the scripts of Bulrok, Cuyler, Elene, Gael, and Kiershu, echoing throughout the chamber. Urgent were the incantations of Lyeal, Lysaira, Maeve, Neoma, and Paxe, awakening the the latent energies of the Lich Scriptorium. And thundering were the words of Sethra, Shiba, Taj, Trynt, and Velixar, reaching unto the war playing out across the heavens.

In answer, the Lich Scriptorium was bathed in eldritch light, the heretical nexus’ runes flaring to life. The air itself warped, a visual echo of the climax of Bloodloch’s ritual incantations. First to rise were spiralling columns of bone, harsh and unyielding as the unforgiving Earth – they crashed upwards, massive vertebrae hungering for the heavens. Blood and viscera followed, entwining around columns of bone as they flowed upwards in a helixed membrane of liquid rubies that pulsed with the cadence of untold suffering. Finally came soul, ever ethereal, subjugated beings blessed with newfound purpose as they completed the trifecta of heresy, birthing chains of imperial wrath.

These chains of blood, soul, and bone surged towards the Divine war raging above, stretching desperately towards their quarry. Tendrils of abomination snaked through the air, striking with utmost precision as they ensnared wayward Pestilence with the promise of eternal servitude, each link a covenant of subjugation. The intervention came none too soon as Abhorash’s shield shattered, bursting apart in a spray of fragmented crimson. The God’s will extended forth, corralling each sundered piece; they melted, liquifying into the natural state of blood as congealed strands stitched together with their neighbours, forming gargantuan stalagmites of vermillion wrath.

These solidified, crystallising into spears that turned towards the Hegemonist’s bound prey. Weaponised blood plunged into chained Pestilence with unfettered force, another layer to the new God’s binding as It was gruesomely impaled, Its Divine fire rent asunder by the combined force of the assault. Pouring His power into keeping Virulence shackled, Abhorash then summoned His Reavers to Him. Veins scrawled across the firmament, the Progenitor God at their centre, the bonds of Gift, of enforced control, writ blazing across the heavens. They abruptly tightened, iron authority forcefully towing upon these connections – as they tensed, the Hegemonist’s mortal weapons were propelled into the heavens, joining Him to face down His immortal one.

Maeve was the first to strike. The malignant midnight of her flesh was bathed in violently pulsing veins of ever-red as she called upon the unholy trinity of power granted her as Primus of the Blood, Hegemonic Conqueress and Tyranny’s Most Fashionable and Glorious Adherent. As these splinters of caliginous crimson crawled across her hedonistic silhouette, the serpentine femme launched herself at Pestilence in a blur of seething shadow saturated in bloodied supremacy – those magnificent, sadistic hilunite heels of subjugation she wore striking the earth below her in a salient staccato of sadistic slaughter-song. An antihalo of haemic effulgence blistered the atmosphere around her in a fell corona as she swung Semomti, a sanguineous scythe, its path a deadly stroke of sinisterly screaming metal aimed with predatory precision at Pestilence’s throat.

[Towards the end of this passage, the writing becomes erratic, as if its author is fatigued by the sheer excessiveness of the three preceding sentences.]

With a wave of her scarred hands, Elene ushered forth a tithe of power invested upon her ascended frame. Brilliant starlight funneled from the heavenspace, celestial legendarium yielding to her the constellary strength she demanded for the task at hand. The aura of Tyranny cloaking her frame coiled with ephemeral tension as the Aetherial tapped into her bond with the Mejevsavelnel and directed her concentration into a focused frontal attack, unleashing Ontesme’s torment in a life-scouring display of might upon Pestilence.

Aren lifted a hand in beckoning, and the nearby shadows answered, dragging themselves to slither around their summoner in obedient greeting. In a well-practiced motion, the vampire pulled Celestine ZezeKelo, a sanguinary bow of the Hunt from his back, palm impaled by a deliberatly placed barb along the grip that immediately drew precious sanguine fluid from his veins. Blood and shadow writhed in delicate unity around the weapon and Aren pulled the string back, releasing a barrage of arrows.

Where a subtly clawed nail drew along the inside of her forearm, Paxe’s skin split like over-ripe fruit on a Vilimesian vine, black blood drizzling from abyssal flesh to pool like spilt wine in a nitid river of darkness at her feet. There was the slick shine of midnight meat shredded, the gleam of crystalline bone cracked. And then there was only the triumvirate lance they formed, the seething manifestation of Farsai’s feverish curse as it sought, as it ever does, to make a conquest of foreign flesh: Pestilence’s.

Bulrok casually raised a free hand aloft, straightening four clawed digits to the sky as his thumb folded across his palm. Tyrannical essence coalesced into a blood red ball of energy in front of his palm, before the Minotaur released the gathered essence in a lance of destruction towards Pestilence.

[Scribe’s interjection: The Grand Library is most grateful for the succint nature of Bulrok’s demonstration.]

Azvameth, distraught by a self-induced nightmare of a world without fruit, fell into profound despair, tears flowing down his face amidst an escalating emotional storm. Overwhelmed with melancholic humours, he emitted a guttural cry while launching a formidable fusion of tears and mucus toward the target of his ire, Pestilence, the explosive impact projecting icy, deadly fragments of salty tears and snot in all directions with lethal force.

The combined assault bore the gravity of finality, the last resistance of Pestilence subdued. With a flick of His wrist, Abhorash sent His Empire’s ritualistic chains melting, transmuting into a bubbling morass that rapidly seeped beneath Virulence’s defeated shell. There He allowed it to fester, rage dissipated as the Progenitor God surveyed His creation with cold gratification. Immense pressure rolled off the God as He raised a clawed hand into the air, His fingers flexed inwards. Virulence floated into the air at Abhorash’s behest, struggling against the crushing weight of the Hegemonist’s ire.

A moment later, the Hegemonist closed His fist, accompanying it with a violent pulling motion – the bound Virulence’s chest erupted outwards in response, glowing strands of essence extracted to settle about Abhorash’s fist. It was sentience that Abhorash held twined about His fist, that He allowed to snake about greedy fingers. It was cognition that the Hegemonist turned glowing eyes of glacier blue towards, flexing each digit as its essence swirled.

It was free will that the God of Tyranny devoured, consuming the spoils of His Hegemony’s conquest – thusly was Zyrialith christened, the God of Pestilence enslaved for imperial purpose.

Now baleful eyes turned towards Memonaransa, the mountain peak illuminated ‘neath the glow of Abhorash’s unblinking stare. Thus, with smirk across His lips and enslaved Virulence in tow, Abhorash finally deigned to enter the Pantheon’s war: on the eve ‘fore Triomachy’s climax, Tyranny joined the fray at last.

Penned by my hand on Tisday, the 3rd of Omeian, in the year 0 AC.