Childeen stood in front of the library building in Coral City. He took a deep breath not knowing what result he hoped for before walking in. He asked to speak to one of the scholars, whomever was most knowledgeable in demons and demonic possession. When they met him he would politely ask if it were possible to have some artifacts identified? Artifacts which have certainly been exposed to concentrated demonic energy.
He was led into a small library. While the Tyr’ani had been gifted a full city block in coral city, they had only filled one long hall of corridors so far. This was not for lack of trying…the scholars here were working full time copying books from the home library to fill this outpost of knowledge as the Tyr’ani viewed all their temples. But right now it looked like there were only five fully recognized scholars, the other twenty scribes were just on their initiation into the faith.
He was led past the corridor of books, past the five chambers with one scholar teaching four scribes in each. And finally he was led into a dark dank room, that smelled rank, and was filled with a single mass of undulating tentacles and growing retracting spines. Childeen was surprised he was taken to a Nightmare, then remembered that the Tyr’ani were founded by an Intelligent Nightmare.
The undulating mass formed a mouth and said, "Welcome Childeen Blackheart, many of your secrets are known to us. I say this not to give you fear of blackmail, or threat. I say this so you know you may speak freely in my presence. I am Thornton Shog, and I was born from the darkest fears of a sentient much like you in the year 1000 of the Peace of Falos. I ate my creator, an act I would soon regret, when I learned that I lived and was fully self aware and self realized, and to live is both joy…and suffering.
I was taken in by the wandering Nightmare Lord Bhuzu, and kept as a pet, and knew many masters. I thought my years performing for the Nightmare Lords were my most pained and horrible. But I was wrong…so wrong. My latest masters, and his entire race, was wiped out by the bloody rages of the Warmonger throught his puppet, the K’ias Emperor.
But I was lucky, I guess. To be placed in a specimen jar, and stored by the K’ias Conquerer, Vul the Negamancer. Then I knew suffering that made my time with the Nightmare Lords seem but a pleasant dream.
After that…I was stored away and luckily so, or I would have died in the purges that the Earthers made on this planet in the formative years of their colony. But when I was discovered it was by my faithful friends within the Tyr’ani, and they introduced me to a world where a Nightmare might find peace…
For that I am ever faithful and ever grateful.
You too fear your future will never allow for peace? Tell me more of what afflicts you and I will render a judgement and a presciption for treatment if needed…?"
“You mention artifacts, surely you speak of the corruptors you bear? The pistols that even now are seeping energy into your Leyas aura?” asked the Nightmare slyly, it seemed Thornton Shog had a strange way of answering a question.
Childeen was taken aback for a second at dealing with the intelligent nightmare but the feeling quickly passed. He would be lying if he said this conversation was the weirdest he had lately. “Scholar Thorton Shog thank you for seeing me at such short notice.” Childeen undid his jacket and slowly drew out the pistols. Laying them down between them muzzles oriented away from the both of them. The pistols had polymer grips the body of the guns being a sleek modern design and covered in a black plastic. Diabolic runes glowed and flickered on the guns as he set them down oscillating from a disconcerting purple to an ominious green.
“I was there when the Da’humb queen died. It was a clients hair brained scheme that led me there. His ridiculous plan was to kill the queen and use her brain as the CPU to some sort of bio computer.” Childeen shrugged, “She didn’t fight it in fact she gave him one shot before she defended herself.” Childeen shook his head, “She believed without the descended around her existence put reality out of balance. I tried to convince him not to but he took the shot. If he had walked who knows what would have happened but instead I got to witness the bloody execution of the Dahumb matriarch.”
Childeen shuddered, “He was covered in the blood and where it touched runes like those appeared. I was able to avoid most of it but my guns were covered in the blood.” He said pointing to the guns.
“Killing the queen may have destroyed my timeline, the only source of information I have regarding that is a rogue unity cyborg hunter whom set the chain of events in motion.” He shook his head swallowing down a fiery blast of anger. “I am still looking for the flaws in this one, the ways it is different.” He shrugged not knowing what else to say about the possibility his timeline was so gone it may never have existed.
“So thats where I stand, I need to figure out how dangerous to me those pistols are. I have been to a few different hell dimensions as well as a few stays measured in hours in unity hellscape stations like the one which crashed landed here.” Childeen smiled a thin lipped smile, “I am also not nearly enough of a saint not to worry about being possessed and not even realizing it.”
An eye formed in Thorton Shog’s extended tentacle and looked closer.
“Good news, this is the closest actual remaining timeline to your Leyas aura’s signature. A lucky, lucky occurrance for one who has crossed the threshold of time, seen it ripped apart and woven back together. I hear when it is done properly it leaves a blue afterglow? Is this true?”
"The bad news, the very nature of these weapons have been utterly and completely changed. They are alive in a way, not sentient in the sense of speaking but…they have a will and a mind. Imagine a pair of conjoined twins removed by surgery, yet they physically are apart they feel as if they are together.
The worse yet news, as their bearer when they were born, these twins have taken aliking to you. They will feed off of you, like a surrogate mother. But you are not corrupted yet enough to feed them. Your choices might lead you there. You have certainly experienced enough trauma to fall that way, which gives the twins increased desire to feed on you.
They will try and draw you to corruption until you fall to become a primal descended…if you fail in your willfulness. if you fall to weakness and the ease of cruelty that comes from pain, instead of forging your heart with courage and standing proud and tall in the face of the evil that threatens the planet and the people you love."
“Great another pair of mouths to feed.” Childeen mused, “So either I break bad and feed the weapons or they what? Starve if I am a saint?”
Thornton Shog made multiple smiling faces in his nightmare flesh. Childeen could tell he was trying to be reassuring but it wasn’t working. Thornton Shog continued, “Yes, to put it in a nutshell. But more overtly, the Twins cannot feed on Undead, Descended, Vampyrs, Bandits and Nightmares. So there are some targets you could unleash them on with less worry. But yes, every day will be choice of course. But the twins may make some worse choices seem the better.”
Thornton Shog asked, “You are…what you are…this doesn’t change that. How are you assuaging those needs…if it is not impolite to ask?”
Childeen smirked, "No its quite alright, right now I am finishing up the last loose ends of my current contract. Between the giant nightmare city that eats you to gain entrance, this one with the crashed hellscape station attached to it I have plenty of fear to go around. Add in the victims of the station who are being rehabilitated and the islands creator, whom many of the residents have to agree with thanks to illegal unity technology, being well on his own way to fully descending. Plenty of fear to go around here.
When I leave here I will either lend my services to another conflict zone where fear is always abundant, or go back to managing my company. If its the latter I make sure to do tons of unannounced spot inspections. They keeps me in touch with what my company does and for people who have never seen true evil the big boss showing up and asking questions is one of the most terrifying things that can occur. Also I generally only take my briefings from the most junior salaried person in the room, which seems to cause a lot of apprehension as well.
Thornton Shog smiled with uncounted mouths, "Yes I can see those spot inspections raising quite a bit of fear in those relying on a paycheck for survival.
Though on an unrelated note I had hoped to ask. This city has recently gone through two major uphevals. The first major upheval was the Rabble learning that Ryuk controlled them using the illegal means.
The second was the recent take over by Holys and his Hivemind. The Rabble are angry and upset, for good reason I may add.
What I had hoped to ask was could the Tyr’ani hire the services of your company for times when our Scholars are traveling from here to the shores. With the state of chaos here, I am worried our Scholars might be targeted by angry Rabble and others…"