By feebadger 1 Comments
Learre had been unable to attend the meetings since the first. She had not the strength to rise after that, though the calling was so strong she had tried each time. I had been able to calm her and return her to her bed whilst I, enthralled in the call song as all of my people were, went to kneel and pray to a God I could not even comprehend. Now, Learre rode upon my back, her legs too weak to carry her frame, her mind flitting in and out of fevered delirium as we approached the great temple of Kaan. My people, the tribes of Iguaam were already there, unburdened as they were, on their knees, awaiting the beginning of the prayer that would send the power of our collective faith into the heavens above. Yet, as we entered the great square that stood before the mighty spire, I instantly sensed unease, a disturbance rippling through the crowd. As my eyes rested on my people before me, I saw their eyes averted to the steps that led to the temple doors, the place from which the Silver one had conducted his great sermons. Gathered on those great stone steps were the Pious, their black drapes billowing around them, their aged, weak bodies hunched from the burdens of bureaucracy. Yet, to my amazement, there stood the Silver one, his arms crossed, his ears being barraged by the insidious reasoning of the Pious.
Learre had become increasingly heavy upon my back as I made my way through the restless crowd toward the front, yet as I grew closer I saw clearly the face of the stranger, his brow furrowed first in confusion and then, in flashes of furious anger. If the Pious had any inkling of this, they showed no sign for then, just as I reached the front of the crowds, I saw the stranger explode in a gesture of complete rage.
“ENOUGH!” He bellowed, the crowd around me recoiling in terror from the power of his words, the Pious sent tumbling down the steps, yelps of cowardice squealing from their mouths, “YOU WOULD DARE TO BARTER WITH THE GODS!?”
His whole body crackled with energy as he slowly began to step toward the black shapes of the Pious before him, their tortured frames wrapped in the finery of their position as they crawled and whimpered from him.
“In your greed and your immorality, you would seek to barter with one such as I? You would seek to gain monetary gain for a gift from the gods? Does your wickedness know no bounds?”
I gently lowered Learre to the ground and cradled her fevered body in my arms. Fear gripped me, absolute and complete as I watched the Silver stranger rise into the air before us, his rage unabated and his entire body glowing with a furious brilliance. I watched as he rose above the great temple of Kaan and hovered in terrible silence before reaching out his hand and pointing a finger of divine power at the Pious laid below him.
“You, who would think yourselves worthy of ruling over a people, of depriving them of their gods and of their lands! You, who would seek to gain from that which you cannot understand, now you will see the harvest from your sins. Now, you will see the true power of your gods!!!”
And I saw, we all did as he turned, his form engulfed in pure energy, his hands raised toward Kaans’ great temple itself and in that moment I realized… I realized why that great temple had been constructed and if I had known what was to come next, perhaps I would have bellowed a warning to the Silver one. Instead, I watched, helpless as great bolts of energy, pure cosmic energy flew from his body and crashed into the temple, its masonry exploding all around us, while it crumbled as if made from clay.
Yet, then I saw the strangers face falter as massive explosions came from within the crumbling form of the temple itself. Without warning, great plumes of flame flew upwards into the heavens from the falling rubble and caught unawares, the Silver One suddenly found himself caught in a great coil of energy. It rushed upward from the temple at speeds unknown and unable to move in time , the stranger found himself caught within its asperity, held within the grasp of a great leviathan. It held him there for what must have seemed a lifetime, a scream emanating from him which still echoes to this day, the smell of burning flesh filling the air and then, without warning, it released him and he fell. The energy then rose above us all, spreading itself out to the horizons, the screams and wails of the Pious being the only sound as it suddenly dissipated and fell, softly, almost gracefully to the ground around us. As far as the mind could travel, all across our barren lands the energy fell and where it did, the land started to shift and crack beneath it. Water suddenly flowed from long dry ground and a silent fan of green began to spread before our very eyes. My people watched from the gates of the city of Kaan as wherever the falling energy touched, life returned. Trees bore fruit, produce sprouted from the ground and in my arms, my dear, beloved Learre opened her eyes and smiled. She sat upwards, her fever broken and with complete innocence asked of me what had transpired.
Not knowing what to answer, I left her there a moment as, trembling, I approached the fallen form of the Silver One. His body laid recumbent upon what remained of the temple steps, the area surrounded by rubble and smouldering fire. As I approached I saw no movement and fearing the worst, I knelt and cradled him in my arms. No apprehension did I feel in touching him now, only a joy, an eternal gratitude. Yet, what I saw in his face when I looked down shocked me to my very soul. Never had I seen such fear. Never had I seen such unholy fear as I saw in his face that day. I then realized that he had not been lying still but had been struck with fear to such a degree that his body lay rigid. I asked him what was wrong and yet, he could nbot answer me, his tongue stilled by whatever lay in his mind, behind his eyes. Beginning to feel the ruminations of fear myself I grew frustrated and raising my voice I asked of him what was wrongs and, finally, he turned his eyes to mine.
“I… I remember everything… All I have done… All that had been blocked from my mind for so long… I remember everything… The chains around my mind have finally been freed.”
I held him firm and tried to speak, though his terror stil permeated my senses. I told him of how this was joyous news, of how grateful we were for having saved us from the dread tyranny of the Pious. Yet he grabbed at me, grabbed at me hard and in his fear, spoke in tears.
“YOU DO NOT UNDERSTAND! I have not saved you! I have saved none of you! All I have brought you is death, for you and all your people. Your entire planet is doomed! Don’t you understand? I have been freed of His chains and He knows this! He will come for you now! There is no stopping Him! There is no stopping the coming of Galactus!”
Then the heavens roared above us and it was surely the sound of death approaching.